Guiltless Granola Bars

Granola bars were always a go-to snack growing up. However if you turn the box around to see the stats, you may be shocked to see how much sugar is packed into such a small bar. Here’s a date-based granola bar recipe to help you make a convenient snack that is refined-sugar free but still packs a lot of flavor and texture.

First, chop your favorite nuts and dried fruit. This time around I used walnuts, almonds, pistachio, leftover trail mix, prunes, figs, raisins, and grains & seeds from Trader Joe’s. You can also add honey, sweeteners, chocolate chips, granola, rolled oats, or really anything else you like in granola bars. The ratio of dates to mix-ins depends on how much of a date-taste you want. Just make sure there are enough dates to bind everything together. I used a large container of medjool dates from Costco and the same quantity of mix-ins.

Then gather spices and extracts. For this batch I used vanilla and orange extracts & ground cinnamon, nutmeg, and cardamom. Save the fleur de sel to sprinkle on top of the bars before cutting them.

Chop dates into small pieces and add spices and extracts to taste. Try to make the pieces uniform so they melt evenly. Toss the dates and spices/extracts so everything is evenly coated. 

Melt dates by heating in the microwave in 2-minute intervals and mixing between until you can mash the dates without any large pieces left.

Add in all of your mix-ins (nuts, seeds, grains, dried fruit, etc)

Mix the date and topping mixture until everything is well incorporated.

When slightly cooled, spread the mixture on an oiled or wax paper lined plate or pan. This is a standard cake pan, which is perfect for cutting bars. After the mixture is spread on the pan, sprinkle and press fleur de sel on the top. Let completely cool.

Remove from the pan and cut into bars or squares

Individully wrap bars/squares in wax paper and store in a container.


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