Oats Granola Bars

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I’m not a big ‘snacker’ but sometimes I’m hungry enough to grab a snack between the lunch and dinner period and that’s when I pull out a granola bar.

I started out, like many of us, snacking on those store bought granola bars which are chuck full of refined sugars and preservatives and a host of other ingredients that don’t sound like food and definitely have you tongue-tied when you attempt to pronounce them. But once I learnt how to make granola bars myself and control what kind of sweetener I use and what I put in ’em, it was bye bye store bought bars.

So today I’m going to share with you, how you can make your very own bars; it takes literally 20 minutes to assemble and you only gotta wait about another 30 minutes till you’re enjoying a nutritious snack full of fibre from the oats and protein from the nuts and seeds. If you don’t care to wait that long, no worries, these can be made in batches ahead so whenever you’re ready for one, just grab and go.

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I used exactly 5 ingredients for the base which is really all you need to make this bar and I added 3 more ingredients to the top just for a little added crunch and flavour. So the base included:

  1. Raisins, which I pulsed to a sticky consistency till it could form a ball.
  2. Toasted oats which I toasted till nice and golden brown (toasting the oats adds such a great flavour and actually smells so yum).
  3. Honey+almond butter+course sea salt, all heated together. Its sweet and just a bit salty. Vegans can substitute honey with maple syrup or agave syrup.

The toppings:

  1. Lightly toasted sliced almonds+lightly toasted pumpkin seeds+dried cranberries, a sweet and crunchy combo.

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I harvested my own pumpkin seeds from a pumpkin we got from our family in St. Elizabeth. I scooped the guts out, separated all the seeds and toasted them till they were soft enough for me to pull apart and reveal the little green seeds within. If you’ve got young, curious kids in your kitchen, let them be in charge of this, minus the toasting part; they will have a blast!

Our pumpkin vines are gearing up to give us some beauties this season; they’ve got little blossoms appearing all over. Can hardly wait to harvest seeds from my very own pumpkins!

Next I toasted everything that could be toasted and heated the honey, almond butter and salt (don’t let it boil or bubble), then pulsed the raisins in a small food processor (but you could even process them by hand in a pestle and mortar).

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Then I combined all 5 ingredients, including the toasted oats to form a sticky, oatsy, raisiny, dough? What I mean is, it all came together as one, like dough does.

I pressed it into a parchment paper lined pan using a cup and topped it with the pumpkin seeds, sliced almonds and dried cranberries. Covered it with another layer of parchment then popped it in the freezer for 15 minutes. I sliced them up, then into the freezer again for another 15 to set them in place.

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Oats Granola Bars are crunchy, sweet but not too sweet and a bit salty, which is my favourite part. If you want these chewy, just decrease the amount of oats (see recipe).

I’m enjoying making my own bars and this is definitely one of my favourite recipes. They are a super delicious, healthy snack that can be stored in air-tight containers for a good 1-2 weeks in the refrigerator and much longer in the freezer but I doubt they’ll be around for more than a few days.

I hope you love this one as much as I do.

Scroll down to get the recipe!

Oats Granola Bars

  • Servings: 10 bars
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

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These are fantastic on the go snacks that satisfy that little hunger you have between lunch and dinner. Healthy and nutritious.

INGREDIENTS

1 cup raisins (I re-hydrated mine in water for 15 minutes)

1 1/2 cups old fashioned oats

1/4 cup honey or maple or agave syrup

1/4 cup almond butter

1 teaspoon course sea salt

1 tablespoon pumpkin seeds

1 tablespoon sliced almonds

1 tablespoon dried cranberries

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Pulse raisins until they are mushy and come together in a ball. Add a bit of water if needed.
  2. Toast oats and nuts. Set aside.
  3. Warm honey, almond butter and salt in a small sauce pan, stirring until thin and warm.
  4. Add the raisins, oats and honey mixture (while still warm) to a bowl and stir with a spoon till it all comes together.
  5. Line a freezer safe square pan with parchment paper and place the mixture into it. Press it out a bit with the back of a spoon to even it out and add the pumpkin seeds, sliced almonds and dried cranberries on top.
  6. Place another piece of parchment paper over the mixture and use the bottom of a cup to flatten and even it out. Do not press too much, just until the mixture covers the base of the pan evenly.
  7. Cover properly with a layer of plastic wrap over the parchment paper and pop it into the freezer for 15 minutes.
  8. Remove and cut into 10 bars. Put it back in the freezer for 15 more minutes.
  9. It is ready when the bars are firm.
  10. Store in air tight containers in the refrigerator or freezer.
  11. Enjoy!

I hope you shine today!heart

 

 

 

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