Last night I was in a random mood. I found myself experimenting in the kitchen – a rarity to say the least! I’ve recently been reading a lot about making your own granola bars/balls. So I decided to try my hand at the idea.
Here’s what I had on-hand last night:
– Adams natural creamy peanut butter
– Medjool dates (from bulk section at Winco)
– Homemade apple butter
– Lime Juice
– Coconut flakes
The first five ingredients found their way into the food processor and formed a sticky mess. I then rolled the dough into small balls and rolled into the coconut flakes for an outer coating. I then placed in the refrigerator and enjoyed a delicious treat several hours later.
Needless to say, these little gems are easy to make, convenient to eat when you’re on the go and are a great alternative to sugar-laden, preservative-packed granola bars at the grocery store. There are also a TON of different varieties to add to adjust your bars/balls to your liking.
You could add:
– Raisins, craisins, dried apricots, dried blueberries, any dried fruit
– Raw nuts: peanuts, almonds, cashews, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, pecans, walnuts
– Peanut butter, almond butter, cashew butter
– Applesauce, applebutter, yogurt
– Coconut flakes
– Lime juice, vanilla, cinnamon, cocoa powder, lemon zest, orange zest, almond flavoring
– Oats, bran, rice crisp cereal, pretzels, graham crackers
– Avocado, shredded carrot, pineapple chunks
– Chocolate chips for the folks with an extra sweet tooth (but only add a few!)
So what makes these gems so fabulous?
– Fiber: through the dried fruit
– Healthy polyunsaturated fat: through the nuts or nut butter
– Less Sugar: natural fructose (slow digesting sugar – better on your blood sugar levels) found in the dried fruit compared to added white sugar, high fructose corn syrup or honey
– Antioxidants: through the dried fruit
– Whole grains: through the oats
– No preservatives
So…get in the kitchen and get creative! Enjoy 🙂