Last week I got it into my head that I really needed to make granola bars. I love eating bars but I can’t stand the crazy amounts of sugar and preservatives and general not greatness you find in commercial granola bars. I’ve always wanted to make my own, but hadn’t yet.
A lot of the recipes I’d seen in the past were held together with dates, but I’ve never had dates on hand. They’re just kind of expensive-looking and I never knew what I’d use them for. Weeeelll last Saturday I went to Trader Joe’s and decided that the day had come to bust a move with some dates. I bought a 16 oz. package and decided to look up some recipes.
Well, turns out all I could find online were a bunch of granola bar recipes that were cooked, or just not quite what I was looking for. I wanted a bar that was crunchy and naturally sweet and chock full of deliciousness. And I wanted it to be raw… don’t ask me why, it just felt right. I don’t know much about the raw lifestyle, but I really appreciate the creativity that goes into all of the raw recipes I’ve come across.
Plus, why cook a granola bar when you can just mush everything together?
So since I couldn’t find exactly what I was looking for, I decided to just check it out for myself. I pulled together this little recipe and have been so unbelievably pleased with it. It was a total experiment that luckily panned out well. I’ve been munching on these little babies all week, and unfortunately don’t know how much longer they’re going to last.
This may have to become a new staple… because I’m going to be super bummed when I eat the last one.
Raw Date Granola Bars
-2 cups dry oatmeal
-1/4 cup chopped craisins (or any dried fruit!)
-1/4 cup chopped walnuts (or any nuts!)
-1/4 cup little pieces of banana chips
-about 15 dried dates (or a little over 8 oz.)
-1 tbsp honey
Make it Happen:
1. Mix oatmeal, craisins, walnuts, and banana chips in a mixing bowl.
2. Chop dates and then mush them in your hands (yeah, it gets messy, but you want to turn them into a sticky ball.
3. Knead the oatmeal mix into the date ball. It’s kind of a process, but basically you want to get it all mixed together until you have a kind of dough ball. At this point I added the tablespoon of honey to help with the consistency.
4. Line a pan with wax paper, and then spread the date/oatmeal dough into the bottom with your fingers.
5. Stick the whole thing into the refrigerator to chill for at least forty-five minutes.
6. Finally, pull it out and cut into bar pieces and then individually wrap in wax paper.
They’re so great, I’m seriously crazy about them. They’re supposed to be nice little snacks, or a good, filling addition to an on-the-go breakfast or lunch… but instead I just want to eat them one after the other all day long. And, yeah the process is messy, but isn’t it more satisfying to eat something after you’ve gotten your hands and clothes and countertop all funked up in it?