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Healthy Homemade Breakfast Bars

5 July 2010 10 Comments

Wow, I have kept up with the Insanity workout program each day, but the real insanity was outside this weekend. I live in a tourist town, and it literally exploded this weekend with people. Our little town of oh, about 2000 or so full-time residents (with three stoplights total and one two-lane “highway” that runs through it) expands to an estimated 30,000+ on busy weekends. We attempted to hibernate, but it was futile … just too much going on.

But, my husband brilliantly found a wide open park with only about 50 people at it, where we could see the fireworks beautifully. It is just a 10 minute walk from our home, and we were able to avoid the packed beaches of people. I love him.

How was your 4th? Did you see the fireworks?

We went to a neighborhood barbecue on the 4th, and I brought these …

Not my typical healthy fare, but yummy! I posted the recipe for these Apricot-Raspberry Crumble Bars (dairy-free and soy-free) here on One Frugal Foodie. I may try to “healthify” the recipe later, for an at-home treat.

Back at home, I was still chipping away at those apricots, so I made some healthier Apricot Breakfast Bars (dairy-free and soy-free). Yes, we had some of the bars above, but these were a better choice for breakfast and morning snacks! Each morning over the weekend, my husband and I enjoyed one of these bars (very filling) with a pot of tea (each – his: black, hers: green).

I really like the concept of this recipe, and in general, we enjoyed them and had no problem in finishing them, but I think I want to work with the recipe some more. They came out quite moist and dense, and a wee bit too tart from the apricots. Nonetheless, I think it is a decent recipe (I adapted it from Recipezaar), and wanted to share it with you here, in case you want to give it a go, or experiment a bit. Plus the recipe is so darn easy! I added some of my notes on what I might change on the next go …

Nutty Apricot Breakfast Bars

As suggested in the original recipe, I chopped the walnuts in my food processor, removed them, and then used it to chop the apricots. But you can easily do this by hand.

  • 1-1/2 cups chopped nuts (I used 1/2 cup cashews and 1 cup walnuts)
  • 1 cup diced apricot (I used 4 or 5 – a well packed cup)
  • 1/2 cup honey (can sub agave to make them vegan if you wish)
  • 2/3 cup whole grain spelt flour (can sub wheat flour if you wish)
  • 1/2 cup wheat germ
  • 2 tablespoons oil (I used melted coconut oil)
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon orange zest (optional)

Preheat your oven to 350ºF and grease an 8 x 8-inch baking dish.

Place apricots, almonds and walnuts in your food processor and chop.

Place all ingredients in medium sized bowl and mix well.

Spread the rather thick mixture into your prepared dish and level it out.

Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until firm. Let it cool completely before cutting and removing from the pan.

What I might do differently next time:

  • I thought the recipe needed some salt. I would start with 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon.
  •  The apricots and honey didn’t quite balance for us since apricots can become quite tart when they cook. I would like to keep the honey/sugars low, so I would probably use a sweeter fruit or add in some dried fruit.
  • These wouldn’t hurt from added flavors – maybe spices, vanilla, etc.
  • I may play around with the moisture level, either reducing the OJ or upping the flour, but, I kind of liked them moist and dense on the same hand.

Yields 8 to 12 bars

 

Fitness Log:

Friday – About 40 min Insanity Pure Cardio. If I recall, we logged about 3 miles of walking too.

Saturday – 42 min Insanity Plyo Cardio Circuit. Again, trying to remember, but I think it was 2 miles of walking.

Sunday – Rest day, but I did log about 4 miles of walking with my husband.

Monday – 40 min Insanity Cardio Power & Resistance, a little over 3 miles of walking and a 1 hour hike in the forest with husband and a good friend. (I was about to hit publish, when my husband asked me to go for another walk, so up that to 4.5 miles!)

10 Comments »

  • Simply Life said:

    YUM! Those bars look delicious!

  • Kelsey @ CleanTeenKelsey said:

    Oh wow, those look intense. Moist and dense breads are my favorite!! I don’t have apricots.. I wonder if peaches would work?

  • Katie said:

    Apricots are tricky in baked goods, from what I’ve read. I haven’t ever tried them though.

    You are a serious walker! Or should I say and INSANE walker. *Wink*

  • Meg said:

    Wowza these look amazing! I’d have to make a gluten free version of them, but that’d be totally worth it. Anything with dried fruits, nuts and honey is delicious :)

    Love all the walking :) hiking is one of my favorite forms of walking, actually! So fun!

    Enjoy your night!
    Meg

  • Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) said:

    those look awesome. i love that they are moist and dense looking! too tart? add more sugar!!! I would have skipped the orange zest and possibly OJ and added sugar. But you know me, I have a nice sweet toooth!!!!
    xoxo

  • Pure2raw twins said:

    These look great! Moist and dense ; )

    You always remind me to get walking…I used to walk a lot, I need to get back into it.

  • alisa (author) said:

    Kelsey – I think peaches would be better!
    Averie – Your version would no doubt be sweet and yummy!

  • Lori said:

    Those bars look amazing. Really amazing. I want one. ;)

  • Kelli said:

    Hi Alisa!
    I tried this recipe this morning but with a few “tweaks” of my own that yourself and others might find helpful.
    I used a cup of chopped dried apricots instead of fresh. They were not as tart as you described but the bars were far more dry. Next time I’m going to try soaking them in orange juice first.
    Because I was using dried fruit, I also increased the amount of orange juice – a whole freshly squeezed orange. I didn’t measure – just squeezed away. I might use two oranges next time, again to moisten the apricots. I also used the zest from the entire orange but I’ll keep that measurement the same next time around.
    I used my new favourite baking ingredient to replace the spelt: coconut flour; and replaced the coconut oil with macadamia nut oil. I also replaced the honey with maple syrup. And as you suggested, I threw in a 1/4 tsp of salt.
    All in all, the results were delicious, albeit more dry than I wanted – I really like how your bars look: moist and dense. But its always fun to gobble up my “misses” when I’m experimenting!
    Congratulations on your lifestyle change!
    Thank you for your blog…another one I will definitely be following!
    Kelli

  • alisa (author) said:

    Thanks for the feedback Kelli, that is awesome! Glad you enjoyed tinkering with the recipe. The coconut flour probably sucked up a good bit of moisture too. You might want to reduce and use a little starch (like tapioca)? Or even use part coconut flour part ground nuts or seeds as a flour.

    So glad you like the blog!!

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