I’m always running behind schedule.
It doesn’t matter how long I give myself to get out the door in the morning, we are always down to the wire.
With two young ones, I need quick and easy grab-and-go food options to bring with us when we head out of the door in a hurry. Fresh fruit always makes it in the lunch box as a snack option, and I usually have vegetables cut into strips ready to go. What was quickly becoming a go-to snack was a healthy granola bar that I was buying at our local natural food store.
The ingredients were great, the convenience was needed, but the cost was high. I was paying over $1 per tiny granola bar, and with two boys who were at times consuming 2 each a day, I needed to cut the cost by making them myself. I checked out the ingredients, removed the few added preservatives, played around with the ratios a bit and voila! 5 ingredient, no bake, granola bars for a fraction of the cost.
I also soon realized that these granola bars weren’t just for the boys. Because they are inexpensive, and so easy to make, I have been filling my freezer full and it allows me to have a quick bite when I am hungry and short on time.
And what mom isn’t short on time these days? I don’t get to sit down and enjoy a meal when I’m hungry, but I do have enough time to consume a bar or two on the way to the library or park.
So what are you waiting for? Chances are you have these ingredients in your pantry, or can pick them up at your local grocer next time you are there.
Don’t waste your money on store bought granola bars that contain unnecessary ingredients. Instead, take 10 minutes and be ready to surprise yourself!
- 2 1⁄4 cups rolled oats (find our favorite brand here or here)
- 1 1⁄2 cups dates (pitted)
- 1/3 cup local raw honey
- 1/3 cup of unsalted almond butter (find great deals on almond butter here)
- 1⁄2 tsp unrefined sea salt
- Possible addons: chocolate chips, shredded coconut, nuts, dried fruit, seeds. (find wholesale prices on these items here)
- Line an 8”x8” glass baking dish with nonchlorinated parchment paper and set aside.
- Warm almond butter and honey in a small saucepan on low.
- In a food processor, process the dates. Depending on your machine and the freshness of
- your dates, you may need to add 2 tbsp of water. It will help your processor blend them. High end processors shouldn’t need the liquid (or the full amount). Continue processing until the dates have been chopped into tiny bits that form a dough.
- Mix the dates, salt and oats together in a large mixing bowl. When the almond butter and honey mixture is smooth, add them to the bowl as well. Mix together until the ingredients are well blended and there are no visible clumps of dates.
- Pour the mixture into your lined pan. Using a fork, press firmly.
- Place in the fridge for 30 minutes. Remove and cut into preferred size.
- These no bake bars can be stored in the fridge for up to a week, though they won’t last that long :) They can be stored in the freezer for longer. I store them in an airtight glass container and wrap them in individually in parchment paper when packing them with a lunch.