Homemade Granola Bars

Like all mothers, I want to feed my children well. I’ve spent many hours in the kitchen and many more hours in my head trying to figure out the right diet. We’ve tried many things – no dairy, no wheat, vegetarian, raw, GAPS diet, making our own cheese and butter, making our own fermented veggies, making kombucha and water kefir for probiotics – the list goes on.

Food is a big deal for most parents. So to make life a bit easier and let you know you’re not alone, I’m going to post recipes and tips from time to time. If you like these posts, let me know and I’ll do it more often.

By special request from my friend Bobbie, here is a recipe for no bake granola bars.  I like them without the chocolate, but my kids favorite part (surprise!) is the chocolate chips.

Everything tastes better and is better for the environment when it is local and organic. Organic food is often grown with more care and fewer pesticides and chemical fertilizers making it better for the land, the farmers who grow it, and you. Plus it really does taste better most of the time – so go for it when you can.

  • 4 cups rolled oats (quick are my favorite but any thickness will do)
  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup virgin coconut oil
  • 1/2 – 1 cup sorghum, maple syrup, or honey
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (optional)
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 cup sesame seeds
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips
  • 2 Tbsp cinnamon
  • 2 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1-3 tsp salt

You can just throw everything in a big bowl, mix as long as you can with a spoon and then use your hands. We do it that way often.

Slightly easier is to mix the peanut butter, sorghum, and coconut oil (it becomes a liquid at about 80 degrees F). Mix all the dry ingredients together and then pour the liquid into the dry ingredients.

Vary the recipe to your taste, pat the mix into a 9×13 pan and refrigerate. They will harden into bars that keep nearly indefinitely at cooler temperatures.

Enjoy!

 

 

Quality Time Doesn’t Have to Be Expensive

Use the chart below and the tips which follow to figure out if you really need to buy something new or if you could do just as well (and maybe even better) by saving your pennies. Connection doesn’t have to be expensive.

Quality doesn't have to mean "new"
Quality doesn’t have to mean “new”

 

Play More and Spend Less with these practical, simple tips.

Expensive Old Way Lower Cost New Way Added Benefit of the New Way
Going out to movies Make your own entertainment: sing and play music together, read aloud, play a game, create art More connection and stronger family bonds while developing skills and imagination. Get outside. Move. Play. Do projects together.
Buying new clothes, toys, and tools Shop at Thrift stores, trade with friends, and craigslist Reusing means less trash goes in the landfills and oceans. Supporting thrift stores supports valuable charities like stray pets, addiction recovery, and epilepsy research.
Eating out Make your own meals from whole ingredients Homecooked meals are notoriously lower in fat, sugar, salt, and processed food additives helping you both feel and look better.