With tons of quick and easy energy bar recipes out there, the options are endless! Nourishing bars that give energy and saves you money from the processed versions? Sign me up!
I am getting on a kick with making granola bars lately (as you can see in my first post). They are so versatile and easy, and makes no excuse for skipping breakfast! These bars include sunflower seed butter and dried cranberries, but you can substitute for any nut (or seed) butter and other dried fruits like apricots or raisins. Just make sure the butter spread is unsalted and the dried fruit is unsweetened; who needs the extra salt and sugar really?
I learned a few lessons from this recipe. I needed to add an additional 1/4 cup of honey to make the bars stick more, but at the same time was trying to cut the sugar. I have been reading other blogs about energy bars and a lot of bloggers are trying pureed dates or figs to make the right cohesiveness. Next time!
Honey has many health claims, but most of these still need proven research evidence. Honey has been shown to ease the common cold, treat wounds, and promotes the growth of our healthy gut flora. Antioxidants, and minerals including potassium and iron, are also naturally in honey, but are reported to be more concentrated in the form of raw honey. No matter the benefits, just remember that honey is still a sugar and should be consumed in moderation.
No-Bake Cranberry Almond Energy Bars
Makes 8-10 bars
You will need an 8×8 pan and cooking spray, or parchment paper for lining the pan
Total Time: 15 minutes
1 1/2 cups rolled oats
1/4 cup dried unsweetened cranberries
3 tablespoons chia seeds
1/4 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
1/3 cup toasted (or raw) almonds, chopped
1/4 cup all natural honey
1/2 cup unsalted sunflower seed butter
1. Place all of the dry ingredients in a large bowl and mix together. If toasting the almonds, you can do this while the almonds are in the oven. Chop the almonds after toasting (much easier I promise).
2. Mix together in a microwave safe bowl the honey and sunflower seed butter. Put in the microwave for 1-2 minutes on high to make a thinner liquid.
3. Mix in the liquid mixture to the large bowl with the dry ingredients.
4. Transfer the sticky mix to an 8×8 inch lightly greased pan using olive oil spray and pat down flat until evenly distributed. (The olive oil spray can be replaced with lining the pan with parchment paper to prevent stickiness).
5. Refrigerate the mix for at least three hours to harden. Cut into squares and keep refrigerated to keep them firm. Should be fine for up to one week refrigerated. Enjoy!