Monday, July 18, 2011

Nut butter granola bars

Last year, I posted a recipe that I got from my friend Kara. She brought me a batch of her Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Granola Bars after Colin was born. I blame this recipe entirely for not losing my baby weight. It's a delicious way to still be fat, by the way.

However, in the interest of wanting to fit back into my jeans before Colin turns *ahem* two years old, I have modified this recipe, gradually removing sugar from it without sacrificing the taste.

Now, I always take some of these to new mamas with the instructions to store them in the freezer, remove one before you start nursing, and then enjoy after you are done. Last week, I took a batch to Jessica (sans coconut), and I figure it's now time to post the new version of the recipe.

The changes from the original include cutting the brown sugar in half, using freshly ground almond butter instead of peanut butter with oil and sugar added to it, and using dark chocolate chips - a 1/2 cup instead of 3/4 cup. Sometimes I also use Earth's Balance sticks instead of real butter if I want to make them dairy free.

You can also include dried fruit, and I've got some candied ginger to try in my next batch. Something else I'm going to try is making it with freshly ground peanut butter made from honey roasted peanuts, then I'll cut the honey either completely out or in half. I'll never cut the molasses because I love the taste so much.

Without further ado, here is the modified version. Less sugar, still yummy.

Nut Butter Granola Bars

2/3 cup fresh ground nut butter
1 stick butter, softened
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup molasses
1/4 cup honey
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 cups uncooked oats
1/2 cup of dark chocolate chips
3/4 cup shredded coconut
1/3 cup wheat germ
1/4 cup ground flax seed

Heat oven to 350. Beat brown sugar, butter, and peanut butter till fluffy. Add honey, molasses, and vanilla- stir well. Stir in oats, chips, coconut, raisins, and wheat germ. Press into bottom of a 9x13 baking pan. Bake fifteen minutes. Put in the freezer to chill for 45 minutes or until firm. I then cut them into bars and store them in large Ziploc in the freezer.