I'm always looking for pre-workout bars that are satisfying and nutritious... so when I came across this recipe in my "Grazing" cookbook (by Julie Van Rosendaal), I decided to give it a try. As most of you know, I tend to look at a recipe as the starting point, but I certainly don't feel restricted to use only those ingredients already laid out for me. This recipe is case and point. I love peanut butter, but I ADORE almond butter and so I decided to start with that simple swap... and then changed up some of the other options and ended up with this tasty treat. Make it your own - use whatever catches your fancy, or whatever you have in your pantry (dried fruit of any type, nuts that you prefer). Enjoy anytime of the day... and beware - the batter is just as good as the end result!
1/2 c. packed brown sugar
1/4 c. almond butter (smooth or crunchy, your choice)
1/4 c. skim milk
1/4 c. dark molasses
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 c. whole wheat pastry flour (all purpose will do as well)
1/2 c. oatbran
3/4 c. oats
1/2 tsp. b. soda
1/4 c. dried cherries, chopped
1/4 c. dried apples, chopped
1/2 c. dark semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/4 c. sliced almonds or pecans
1/4 c. sunflower seeds
Preheat the oven to 350 F.
In a large bowl, mix the b.sugar, a.butter, s.milk, molasses, oil and vanilla. In a smaller bowl combine the flour, oatbran, oats, and b.soda.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients along with the cherries, apples, chocolate chips, almonds and sunflower seeds. Stir until well blended.
Spread the batter into a 9"x13" pan (already sprayed). I usually spread it out using my hands - I wet them with water, since the batter is quite sticky (thanks to the molasses).
Bake for approximately 25 minutes, until golden. Cool in the pan on a wire rack.
I also will place the cooled pan into the freezer and get the bar really cold. This makes it much easier to cut.
The batter yields about 18 bars.