Okay, it’s official… I suck. Haven’t posted in like 2 weeks because well.. I’ve been busy.
Hubs finally returned from the trip-that-never-freaking-ends last Saturday so we haven’t spent the last week trying to remember who we are and what we are doing in life, and I spent every waking hour of the week before either at the gym, walking the dog, sleeping or working. So.. anyway enough excuses. My sister and I made these the other night and they are SO FREAKING GOOD. And not horrible for you!
Homemade Granola (minus the granola) protein bars!
- 1/2 cup almonds
- 3/4 cup pecans
- 3/4 cup cashews
- 1/4 cup shredded coconut
- 1/2 cup dates
- 1/2 cup dark chocolate
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1/2 almond butter
Line a 9×12 pan with parchment paper (baking paper).
In a blender, nutri-bullet, food processor whatever you’ve got combine the nuts (feel free to change these around to fit whatever you might have on hand or whatever is on sale, I think next batch I will swap cashews for walnuts) coconut, and dates until they are a coarse like sand. You could also add in dried fruit if you are feeling so inclined!
Melt together the honey, almond butter and vanilla, just enough that you can pour it and it will mix in easily with the other ingredients. Combine with the nut/date mixture. Stir in chocolate chips. Now this is where sis and I took a wrong turn. We thought, “oh, those are a bit big for chocolate chips lets add them to the food processor with the nuts..” “oh, that does’t look like very much chocolate… lets add more…”, well let me tell you that after we mixed it together with the warm honey/butter mixture the chip pieces all melted and now the bars are SUPER chocolaty this time. Don’t let the 1/2 cup fool you.. it’s plenty!
Anyway, once everything is mixed together, pour mixture into the prepared pan and smush it into an even layer. Place in the frige until cooled, remove, slice up bars into desired size (I made 12 from my last batch). You can either wrap them individually, or layer them in a container with wax paper or parchment paper between layers. I keep mine in the fridge because with all the chocolate in them they tend to get melty/soft if left out. If you didn’t double the chocolate and then melt it like I did, they should be fine left in an air tight container (mason jar individually wrapped and ready to grab perhaps??), in a cupboard or on the counter.
There really are a ton of different ways to change this basic recipe around, different type of butter (peanut, sunflower, nutella??), different nut combinations, dried fruit, white chocolate chips?? Obviously I was trying to go for the healthiest version I could with almond butter and dark chocolate.