Un-Granola Bars

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I was recently invited to the local launch of a Paleo-inspired food line.  The problem that I had was that the chefs creating this food were not Paleo themselves and made things much too sweet and used questionable amounts and types of sweeteners.  While I’m ok with the occasional sweetener, especially for kids, I’m not ok with just making “Paleo” versions of super sweet confections and eating them on a daily basis.  So, I decided to make my own, not so sweetened, version of a granola bar.  It turned out great!  Please know that you can use whatever variation of nuts, seeds and fruit you have on hand.  You can even omit the fruit altogether and it will turn out great.

Ingredients

1 cup raw cashews
1 cup raw walnuts
1 cup raw almonds
1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds (no shell)
1/2 cup raw pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
1/4 cup unsweetened raisins
1/4 cup unsweetened dried cherries
1/4 cup finely shredded, unsweetened coconut
1/5 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped (optional)
2 pinches of salt
1/3 cup coconut oil, melted (you can use butter if you can tolerate it)
2 Tbsp. vanilla extract
2 Tbsp. honey (optional)

Directions

  • In a food processor, pulse the cashews, walnuts and almonds until ground into large and small chunks.  Pour into a large bowl
  • Place the seeds and dried fruit into the food processor and pulse until finely chopped.  Add to the bowl of nuts.
  • Stir the coconut, chocolate (if using), and salt into the nuts and seeds
  • In a small bowl combine the coconut oil or butter, vanilla and honey (if using)
  • Pour over the nut mixture and stir until thoroughly combined.
  • Press into a 9×13 in glass baking dish or a 1/4 sheet baking pan.
  • Cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour.  You can place it in the freezer instead for half the time.
  • Slice and place in individual bags.  Keep in the freezer for up to 1 month.
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