Maple Almond Granola Bar

So, since I’ve been on a granola bar kick lately, I decided these would make a great addition to the recipe list. 🙂

Another accidental experimentation, these are one of the best bars yet! Filled with almond butter goodness, mixed with sweet dates and hearty oats, these granola bars are great for any time of the day. A dash of cinnamon makes them complete.

Almonds are a great nut! They are packed with vitamin E, healthy oils, and a decent amount of protein to keep hunger at bay. Unfortunately, people still shy away from nuts due to their high calorie count. However, I’ve read that at times the calorie count on the label for nuts is higher than what the body may actually use. This is due to the way that calories are measured. ( check it out here –> On Food Labels, Calorie Miscounts )

Pumpkin seeds are one of my favorite seeds (if you haven’t noticed them in half of my recipes already). These little seeds are packed with zinc ( healthy skin! ) and add a little crunch to the bar.

The dates are what keep the granola bar together. Not only do they add a nice amount of sweetness, they are a great source of carbohydrates and fiber.

Ceylon cinnamon is one of my favorite “species” of cinnamon. It’s harder to find and a tad more expensive, but I personally think it tastes better. In the ways of health benefits- Ceylon has a lower amount of coumarin which is a blood thinner. “Regular cinnamon” such as the Saigon and Cassia tend to have higher amounts of coumarin which may be harder on the liver and kidneys if consumed highly in daily amounts.

Oats are always a favorite of mine. 100% whole grain, high in fiber, and a solid source of protein and carbohydrates. Oats the soluble fiber in oats can be a key player in lowering cholesterol. As well as keep you full and satisfied. 🙂

Maple Syrup is by far my favorite sweetener. Brewed from the almighty maple tree, this syrup contains vitamins and minerals that no other sweetener can boast about. It has even been shown that maple syrup does not spike blood sugar and insulin levels as much as regular table sugar.

So enough of me blabbing away, here’s the recipe!

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Maple Almond Granola Bar

  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 1 cup dates
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 1/4 cup whole rolled oats ( gluten-free if you so choose)
  • 1/4 cup Justin’s almond butter
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1/3 cup raw almonds
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp ground vanilla
  • 1 tsp Ceylon cinnamon
  • pinch of salt

Set oven to 350F. Spread oats evenly onto cookie sheet and toast for 5 minutes.

Combine dates and water in bowl and soak for 5-10 minutes. (Until soft)

Use coconut oil to grease a granola bar pan. If you do not have a granola bar pan, line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.

Drain dates and press with paper towel to remove excess moisture. Put into blender or food processor. Grind until paste forms. Scrape down sides. Add almond butter. Mix until just combined. Add ground vanilla, cinnamon, and salt. Mix until combined. Scrape the rest out into a bowl.

In the bowl. Add the date and almond butter mixture with toasted oats. Combine with maple syrup and pumpkin seeds. *Add almonds.

*(optional) Break up almonds slightly with mortar and pestle.

Once everything is mixed, add to the granola bar pan. Or shape desired amount onto cookie sheet with parchment paper. Put into freezer for about 15 minutes until set.

Enjoy 🙂

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NaturallyLT

Hi! I’m Lauren, currently a Nutritional Sciences student at the University of Connecticut. My interest in food and nutrition started when I was about 13 years old. In some of my spare time I would research online the different food trends that were going on at the time. When my friends would come over we’d spend the day baking and cooking different creations we found on the internet or from our favorite cookbooks. At 13 though, it was somewhat difficult to decipher what was fact and what was fad. The internet is an endless virtual world of both legitimate and deceitful information. Throughout high school I took it upon myself to try and analyze what the best “diet” is to follow. I experimented on myself. Sometimes I felt great, sometimes I felt lousy, sometimes I was just plain hungry. I was in high school, I was following what the media and the internet told me to do. I didn’t justify it with facts, nor did I look for the hard science behind these “diets.” This is why I chose to go to school for Nutritional Sciences. I want the science, I want to know what the body does and how food nourishes it. I want to help people of all ages understand how nourishing your body and following a healthy lifestyle can change the way you feel. So they don’t have to struggle and experiment on yourself with the fad diets the media is constantly pumping out. I’m starting Naturally.LT to link you to articles, the studies, the passages to the books I’ve read all written by health professionals. I want to share with you recipes that I’ve found and created myself that are tasty and full of nutrients that will make you and your body happy. I will back up these findings with credible sources, there is no room for junk here. As you may have noticed on Naturally.LT, I have a link to running. Running has somewhat recently come into my life. Once I entered college, something just clicked. I loved the way running made me feel. I became happier, less stressed, and entered an awesome accepting community. Before I knew it I signed up for half and full marathons. Running is an interesting sport, both solitary and meditative, but can also be competitive and adrenaline pumping. This is something I want to explore on Naturally.LT. If you are a first time runner, or a seasoned veteran, I want to open discussion and help guide you with what can help you lace up your shoes or become a stronger runner and recover faster. So join me on this journey of nourishment and endurance.

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