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Quinoa Granola Bars

If you’ve ever made granola bars, or power bar type recipes at home, you’ll know that it’s difficult to find the right balance between healthy ingredients and having the end result taste good enough to eat. A colleague of mine sent me this recipe because she was going to give it a try and wanted to know what I thought about it. I warned her that if she tries to make a recipe that’s too healthy, the end result might not be something she truly wants to eat, and could ultimately not get eaten; which defeats the entire purpose, right? A balance must be struck! And when in doubt, drizzle with chocolate? All that to say, surprisingly enough these bars don’t need chocolate. Yep, they’re that good! I would happily enjoy one for breakfast most days of the week.

Quinoa Granola Bars

1 cup peanut or almond butter

¾ cup honey, agave or maple syrup

2 eggs

1 tbsp ground cinnamon

1 tsp vanilla

1 cup raw quinoa

2 cup rolled oats (not instant)

½ cup hemp hearts

¾ cup green pumpkin seeds

1 cup dried fruit of your choice

¼ cup chia seeds

¼ cup poppy seeds

¼ cup flax seeds

In a large bowl, combine the nut butter, syrup eggs, cinnamon and vanilla. Stir well. Add the remaining ingredients and mix until everything is evenly distributed and all the dry ingredients have been moistened.

Cover a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and grease the paper lightly. Pour the granola bar mixture onto the greased paper and press evenly across the pan. Using the back of a large metal spoon may help. Really press and pack the mix into the corners of the pan and oress down well as you smooth the back of the spoon across the surface until it is even, smooth and solid.

Bake at 325° for 20-25 minutes until the edges and underside are deep golden brown (you can lift it by a corner of the paper to check).

Allow the bars to cool completely in the pan before cutting. Cut into 30 bars. Refrigerate leftovers for up to a week or freeze, individually wrapped in plastic, for up to a month.

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