Sunday, July 17, 2011

homemade granola bars

This has been a whirlwind summer. It's been social and fun, but between too many snack bar lunches and end of the day drinks with friends, my hard-earned journey to health has taken a nose dive. And so, before we embark on the second half of our summer adventures, I am making a concerted effort to at least keep healthful, delicious foods around the house. My kids will (thankfully) eat most anything I put on the plate, so really it's up to me to make healthful choices. In addition to reminding myself of my own little prep ahead mantra, I made a batch of these granola bars to have on hand as a quick afternoon snack before running out to play. They are energy packed, so easy, and satiate our cravings for a sweet treat.

Ruth's Granola Bars
(recipe by Ruth Fehr of The Palette Fund - from the Food Solutions event at Urban Zen in May) makes 14-16 large bars*

2 cups rolled oats
1 cup sliced raw almonds
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
1 cup dried raisins, cranberries or cherries
3/4 cup agave
1/4 cup neutral oil (expeller pressed canola or safflower)
3/4 cup almond butter or peanut butter
1 cup brown rice puff cereal

Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Combine oats, almonds and coconut. Pour onto rimmed baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes, stirring after 10 minutes. As soon as this comes out of the oven, add your dried fruit and mix well, placing the mixture into a large bowl. Place the agave, oil and nut butter into a small pot, stir to mix and bring just to a boil. Pour warm mixture over the granola. Mix well. Add the puffed rice and mix well, until the granola is coated. Cover a rimmed baking sheet with parchment and press the granola mixture onto it. Press firmly until an even layer covers the baking sheet. Cover with another piece of parchment paper and place in fridge until cool. Cut into 2x4 rectangles or 2x2 squares and store in an airtight container in the fridge.

* I cut the bars much smaller (2"x2"), as they're really sweet, and yielded about 40 bars. Here's the recipe in photos for those who like a visual the first time they're whipping something up!


Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Combine oats, almonds and coconut.

Pour onto rimmed baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes, stirring after 10 minutes.

While the oat mixture was baking I placed the agave, oil and nut butter into a small pot, stirring to mix and brought it just to a boil.

As soon as this comes out of the oven, add your dried fruit and mix well, placing the mixture into a large bowl.



Once the nut butter mixture was combined and just about to boil, I poured the warm mixture over the granola.



Mix well.

Then, add the puffed rice cereal, and mix well once again, until the granola is coated.

Cover a rimmed baking sheet with parchment and press the granola mixture onto it.

Press firmly until an even layer covers the baking sheet.

Cover with another piece of parchment paper and place in fridge until cool.

Cut into 2x4 rectangles or 2x2 squares and store in an airtight container in the fridge.

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