Lunch Box Cereal Bars

And here is yet another lunch box recipe. These cereal or granola bars are full of fiber, vitamin A, and complex carbohydrates, helping your children to stay focused and energized, without the sugar highs and subsequent lows of so many commercial snack foods out there. Despite them being loaded with dried apricots, even Freddie, my fruit phobic middle child, loves them, which says a lot. They are super easy and quick to make, and keep for at least a week when stored in an air tight container. Once they’re out of the oven, let them cool completely in the pan before cutting, otherwise they’ll turn into crumbly granola instead.

Brown rice syrup, which is available in health food stores and well-stocked supermarkets, has a mellow sweetness and does a fantastic job keeping all ingredients sticking together. It’s much stickier than maple syrup on it’s own, so best not to skimp on it.

Ultimate Energy Cereal Bars

 

 

Ingredients

  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup almond meal or freshly ground almonds
  • 1/4 cup sesame seeds
  • 1 cup dried unsulfured apricots, roughly chopped (raisins, sultanas, cranberries or a combination will work just as well)
  • a pinch of sea salt, ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg and ground ginger
  • 1/4 cup canola, walnut or almond oil
  • 1/4 cup brown rice syrup
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup

Directions

Preheat the oven to 180 C. Line a 8” square baking pan with parchment paper, letting a bit of excess paper hang over the sides.

In a large mixing bowl, mix oats, almond meal, sesame seeds chopped dried fruit, salt and spices. In a smaller bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients and then stir them into the dry ingredients.

Put the mixture in the prepared pan, smoothing the top with a rubber spatula and pressing down gently.

Bake for 25 minutes or until evenly browned. Remove from oven and let cool in pan.

Remove to a cutting board (the parchment paper makes this quite easy). Cut into individual bars.

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