New York greetings for the day! I am seated on a plush hotel bed, a bag of homemade granola bars to my right, and a window overlooking TriBeCa on my left. I’m here as a result of your votes for my roasted cauliflower lentil tacos. I greatly appreciate it.
I was flown here to the USA Dry Pea and Lentil Council’s event. Because of the significant advantages that pulses (beans, chickpeas, and lentils) have for our health, the economy, and the environment, the United Nations declared 2016 the International Year of Pulses. Together with farmers, chefs, and magazine editors, we’ll celebrate tonight. Let the lentils party!
I can attest to these granola bars’ portability because they made it through the journey undamaged. Lilly commented on my recipe for cranberry orange granola and inquired as to how to transform the granola into granola bars. This gave me the idea to make a cranberry orange variation of my almond chocolate chip granola bars.
We’re here because I offered some advice but couldn’t get Lilly’s concept out of my head. Cranberry-orange granola bars that are filling, honey-sweetened, and made with lots of nutritious whole grains, nuts, and seeds. If you prefer to roll the dough between your palms to form one-inch balls, these no-bake granola bars also make fantastic “energy bites.” You’ll adore these if you enjoy muffins like cranberry orange ones.
Thank you to Lilly for coming up with this idea and to all of you who visit and leave comments with your thoughts, queries, and recommendations. I read each one and make an effort to respond to each and every one. And i always talk about how wonderful you guys are. I appreciate your support for my tacos as well. If you want to follow along, you can find me on Snapchat today under the handle @cookieandkate.
- 1 cup chopped pecans
- Pepitas, 1/3 cup
- Dried cranberries, 2/3 cup
- Quick-cooking oats, 1 3/4 cups (or old-fashioned oats, pulsed briefly in a food processor or blender to break them up)
- 1 teaspoon, preferably organic, orange zest (from 1 large orange)
- 12 teaspoon of cinnamon powder
- If your almond or peanut butter is already salted, reduce the amount of salt to 12 to 34 teaspoon.
- 1 cup packed creamy unsalted almond or peanut butter
- 1/2 cup of maple syrup or honey
- Vanilla extract, 1 1/2 teaspoons
- Two crisscrossed parchment paper strips, cut to fit neatly against the base and up the sides of a 9-inch square baker, should line it. You’ll find it simple to slice the bars later thanks to the parchment paper.
- The pecans and pepitas should be heated in a medium skillet over medium heat, stirring frequently, until fragrant and the pepitas begin to make small popping sounds, about 5 minutes. In a food processor, add the toasted pecans and pepitas. When all the nuts and cranberries are broken up, add the cranberries and then run the machine for about 10 seconds. Your bars will be more difficult to cut through and more likely to crumble at the edges if you skip the food processor step.
- Oats, orange zest, cinnamon, salt, and the contents of the food processor should all be combined in a mixing bowl. Combine by whisking.
Blend the almond butter, honey, and vanilla extract thoroughly in a smaller mixing bowl.
- The liquid ingredients should be added to the dry ones. Mix them together thoroughly with a large spoon until no dry oats are visible. Although it requires some arm strength, you can do it! If combining the ingredients was simple, you should add more oats. Sprinkle in more oats until you run out of room to add more.
- Place the mixture in the square baker that has been prepared. Use a spoon to spread the mixture out fairly evenly in the baker, and then pack it down as tightly and uniformly as you can using the bottom of a flat, round object (such as a short, sturdy drinking glass) covered in a small piece of parchment paper.
Also read: Perfect Steel-Cut Oats
- For best results, leave the baker in the refrigerator overnight or at least for one hour. To avoid being sticky, the oats need time to absorb some of the moisture. When you’re ready to slice, grab both parchment paper pieces by their opposite corners and lift the bars out of the baker. The bars should be cut into 1″ strips with a sharp knife, then cut in half through the middle.
- Individual bars can be wrapped in parchment paper or plastic wrap for portability. Bars keep well for a few days at room temperature, but for the best flavor, I suggest freezing individually wrapped bars in freezer-safe bags.
Recipe adapted from my healthy chocolate chip granola bars.
MAKE IT VEGAN: Use maple syrup instead of honey.
MAKE IT GLUTEN FREE: Be sure to choose certified gluten-free oats.