I always laugh when I hear things like “I have the body of a 20-year-old”. Well, I have the back of an 85-year-old. Now and then it just decides to wreck me for a few days, thus curtailing things like exercising and… cooking.
Luckily, before I got hit with Vertebrae.Fail I had a chance to make these bars for Offspring #1. She has thrown off all vestiges of her mother’s way of cooking and opted for a more totalitarian healthy approach. Ok, so maybe not totally wheat grass and lentils, but at least a more wholesome approach to food, which I applaud her for.
Anyway, I thought I’d help out in my own way and get a handle on granola bars, which I intend to eventually morph into more of an all-out health-food-centric energy type of bar for her. But I wanted to at least be able to get proportions down correctly for everything before getting too crazy with bee pollen and wheat germ add-ins.
And actually, I will have to say that I ate a few of these myself. What I really like is how completely customizable they are.
Now, I did use actual butter in these. Like I said, I was looking for proportions, and I had butter on hand. You can feel free to substitute whatever canola-oil-whipped-into-a-solid-form-and-sold-as-butter product you prefer. There’s also a decent brown sugar substitute out there if you’re looking to cut back on sugars.
I used all of her favorites in these, and they were a huge hit. They will most definitely be on the list of things to make the next time we camp or go on any lengthy car trips. And I’ll keep you posted on any bee pollen/wheat germ renditions in the future.
Strawberry Coconut Mac Bars
1 ½ cups old fashioned oats
½ cup macadamia nuts, chopped
½ stick butter (or equal amount of butter substitute)
¼ cup brown sugar
¼ cup honey
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup Rice Krispies
½ cup yogurt covered pretzels, chopped into small pieces
¼ cup dried strawberries, chopped
½ cup unsweetened dried coconut flakes
½ package white chocolate chips
2 tsp butter
1 Tbs milk
Heat oven to 350˚. Spread oats and nuts evenly out on baking sheet and toast in oven, just until oats begin to turn golden, about 10 minutes. Lightly butter a 9 x 13” glass baking dish.
Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add brown sugar and honey and allow to come to a simmer. Continue to simmer about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Allow to cool slightly.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the oats and nuts, Rice Krispies, pretzels, strawberries and coconut flakes. Slowly pour butter mixture over the top. Using a spoon, mix slowly to combine.
Pour mixture into baking dish. Press down firmly with hands (it might help to use a little butter on them, too!).
Allow to cool. In a microwave safe bowl, combine chocolate chips and 2 tsp butter. Microwave about 30 seconds, stir, and microwave another 30 seconds. Stir until chips are completely melted. If mixture is too thick, add a little milk. Drizzle chocolate mixture over bars and allow to set. Cut into bars.