This is my journey in keeping my family happy and healthy.
In this day and age, what parent knows best what to do and how to care for their family?
There are so many conflicting ideas, so much wisdom, and so many paths.
It is here that I will compile information on what I have learned and the choices I am making.
Maybe my path will help others.... or not. Enjoy!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

HEALTHFUL RECIPES: My next attempt at a "Breakfast" Granola Bar

Okay so the first attempt at a "Breakfast Bar" was a good one, but not perfect, and not absolutely what I wanted to eat regularly. I want to make a bar that I can regularly add to my family's breakfasts or lunches, or just to snack on when nourishment was needed.

My next attempt certainly covered more of the bases I was looking for. This time I added puffed rice for a neat mouth-feel! I also eliminated the flour, bananas & yogurt, for making it less like a cake-bar and more like a granola bar. And of course I nixed the cardamom.

Here's my new recipe:

2 cups oats
2 cups puffed rice
1/4 cup flax seeds
1/4 cup pistachios
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup coconut oil (warmed)
1 tbsp vanilla

Some bittersweet chocolate
a dash of cream

To begin, mix all the dry ingredients together in a large bowl. In a smaller bowl mix the wet ingredients together. Then add the wet ingredients to the dry. Then oil a baking pan. I used a 9 x 13 and that was pretty good. I poured the ingredients in the pan and pressed down firmly and evenly. You really want it to compact and stick together.

I cooked it at 350 degrees F for about 15 minutes. Then cooled on the counter while I prepared the chocolate coating. I added the chocolate because the bars seemed to be falling apart easily. This seems to be the downside to using honey! To do the chocolate, I melted it in the microwave and added a bit of cream to thin it out so I could spread it over the bars. Then I chilled the bars in the fridge.

My complaint with this version was that the honey causes the bars to never solidify, so you have to keep them in the fridge or they will fall apart. I don't really want to use sugar, but I may have to, to get the effects I want out of my bar. Perhaps using an unrefined raw sugar would work? I will have to try that next time.

So the bars were not exactly perfect, but they were DELICIOUS! As my husband put it, "these are like CRACK."Try 'em and see what you think. What would you do to change them and make them better? The honey & peanut butter made it lip-smackin' good! And the crunchiness of the puffed rice fulfilled all my childhood fantasies. This is certainly closer to perfection.... but my quest continues....

This recipe is linked to Kelly the Kitchen Kop's Real Food Wednesday.


  1. Puffed rice is not considered to be a healthy food... per WAPF.

  2. Thank you, I will research that further.

  3. Have you considered using agave in place of honey? I wonder if this would be more successful.

  4. Well, I would say that all sweeteners are controversial in some way, honey included.

    The problem I find with agave is that it is super processed. While it is not as processed as HFCS, it's right up there. So even though it is low-glycemic, it still has it's down side. If you did want to use agave however, you would find that, like honey, it does not keep the bar very firm and rigid since it is a liquid, so you would have to use 1/2 that, and half some other sugar.

    Have you thought about coconut sugar at all?

    Something I have been trying lately is coconut sugar, which has many minerals and the added benefits of being low-glycemic like agave. It is also not processed very much. Plus because it comes as granules, it solidifies nicely like sugar does. I don't know if you use agave because of it's low-glycemic factor, but if you do, you might find coconut sugar a good replacement.

    Check out this info on coconut sugar:

    "The Glycemic Index of coconut sugar is 35 and is classified as a low glycemic index food. Coconut sugar has a high mineral content, being a rich source of potassium, magnesium, zinc, and iron. In addition to this it contains Vitamin B1, B2, B3, and B6. When compared to brown sugar, coconut sugar has 36 times the iron, four times the magnesium, and over 10 times the amount of zinc. The coconut sap, from which coconut sugar is derived, contains 16 amino acids. The amino acid which has the highest content in coconut sap is Glutamine."


    I still love using honey, because of the taste, and because when consumed raw, it has so many added nutrients, vitamins & minerals, plus is anti-bacterial & anti-microbial.

    The next time I try this recipe I plan on using 1/2 coconut sugar and 1/2 raw honey. While I will loose some of the benefits from cooking the honey, some of the goodness will remain.


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