now eat the bar

In my last two posts we talked about raising the bar (on your gift-able crafts), lowering the bar (on your halloween costume) and now we are going to eat the dang bar.

{But before we head to the kitchen, I need to mention this theme was undoubtable inspired by the work of Gretchen Rubin. Her podcast Happier is on my list.  She talks about how raising or lowering the bar can lead to greater happiness. I say homemade treats can also lead to greater happiness!}

Raise it lower it Bars

I love a recipe that is like a map and leaves lots of room for personal preference and what is actually in your fridge or pantry. This map was drawn from the snack bar recipes in Cooking Light(Sept. 2015.)

The dry part:

  • 1 1/4 c. puffed millet 
  • 1 c. rolled oats
  • about 1 c. other dry goodies like: chopped nuts, dried fruit, coconut flakes, chocolate chips, crystalized ginger. This is where it can take a serious turn from healthy snack bar towards delicious cookie. The millet and oats are inexpensive, so don't be afraid to get something nice like dried cherries. You can also cut them with raisins which are less expensive.
Dried fruit can really clump, so take an extra moment to make sure all your dried goods are evenly mixed before adding the gooey mixture.

Dried fruit can really clump, so take an extra moment to make sure all your dried goods are evenly mixed before adding the gooey mixture.

The warm gooey part:

  • 1/3 c nut butter (I've been using tahini because we bought a case of it when I was in a hummus phase, but when it runs out I'll probably just use peanut butter.)
  • 1/3 c honey
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp salt

This gets warmed on the stove until it bubbles a bit. Keep stirring so it doesn't scorch. The original recipe had microwave instructions, but I don't have a microwave. See? Make your own map, get off the freeway and take the scenic route!

Coat your well tossed dry mixture with your warm gooey mixture then press into a pan. I line my pan with parchment paper so the clean up is easy. I start with a silicone spatula and end up using my hands and then finish with the spatula. 

Sprinkle super seeds chia and flax on top for bonus nutrition. 

Bake @ 350 for 10 minutes. Let cool completely and cut into bar shapes.

If you want to raise the bar, search Pinterest for cute ways to package these. Think hand stamped labels, vintage tins, and colorful butcher's twine. If you want to lower the bar, you can stick 'em in a ziplock bag.