Sunday, January 10, 2010

Refined Sugar-Free Granola Bars

These are really yummy and easy to make. We love brown rice syrup. They are almost as good as our favorite store-bought granola bars (Cascadian Farms Chewy). I had this posted on the side-bar, however, the author made her blog private. I do have a protein bar in it's place on side-bar, if you're interested. So here's the recipe:

2 Cups Rolled Oats
1 1/2 cups sliced almonds
1 cup raw pecan halves
1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
1 cup brown rice syrup (found at health food stores)
3 tablespoons local, raw honey (most grocery store honey is heated at high temp, depleting nutrition).

Line a 9-inch square baking dish with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Spread oats, almonds, and pecans on a rimmed baking sheet. Toast in the oven for about 5-7 minutes, until the almonds are just beginning to turn golden. Add the coconut and put the baking sheet back in the oven for another couple minutes, until the cocount is golden brown. Keep an eye on it. The coconut will brown very quickly. Transfer to a large bowl and stir in salt. Combine the honey and the brown rice syrup in a small sauce pan. Cook over low-medium heat for 3-4 minutes JUST until syrup thins out (do not boil-basically warm it up). Remove from heat and pour over the nut mixture. Stir well until everything is well-coated with the syrup.

Spread granola evenly in the prepared pan. Place another piece of parchment paper on top and press the granola into the pan. Be sure to pack the whole thing down really well, all the way to the edges. Refrigerate until cooled completely. Transfer to a cutting board and peel off the parchment paper. Using a sharp, heavy knife, cut the square into 5-6 strips, then cut the strips in half crosswise to make 10-12 bars. I keep them covered in the fridge and serve chilled so they are less gooey. If serving in lunch box, you may want to wrap them individually in waxed paper so that they're easy to grab and take to work. If I am sending my husband off to work with these, I freeze ahead of time so they aren't too gooey at lunch time.

Note: I am allergic to almonds, so I use chopped walnuts and pecans.

Additions: I will sometimes add organic ground flax, bits of dark chocolate and/or dried fruit (i.e., cranberries).

1 comment:

Katie said...

I'm going to try this. One day. When I have time. I swear....

sounds great!