It always cracks me up when I read the nutrition section of parenting magazines. Like if you shred carrots into pasta, your kids won't find them. Yeah right. Don't know about you people, but my son has an onion radar built into his system. No kidding. If there is an onion within a mile radius of his dish, he will not touch it. Don't ask me why, I couldn't even venture a guess. Anyways, one of the things that make me laugh in the nutrition column, is the way they try to make descriptions of healthy food sound much more exciting than they really are. Like "beans are packed with protein" Packed? Isn't that pushing it for a bean? Or more relevant to today's post- granola bars that give " a burst of energy." Aside from the fact that my kids do not need an ounce more energy than they already have (do we really need to peel them off the ceiling?), umm, burst of energy? I have this image of a lethargic child, with his head drooping, kind of like in an allergy commercial, take a bite of a granola bar, and all of the sudden turn into this Energizer bunny, and start running laps around the playground. Alright, enough of the imagery.Try making these granola bars. They are yummy, they taste like real granola bars, and they are an easy, relatively healthy snack to make. Ok? Oh, and also- they're not just for kids- at least I sure can use a burst of energy every now and then....
No Bake Granola Bars
4 tbs. butter or margarine
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup honey
2 cups plain granola (recipe to follow)
1 cup rice cereal (Rice Krispies)
1/2 cup Chocolate Cheerios
1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
Combine honey and butter in a saucepan over a medium-high heat. Stir in brown sugar after the butter starts to melt. Bring the mixture to a boil, then lower the heat to low, and simmer until the sugar dissolves, about 2 minutes. Remove the saucepan from heat. In a seperate bowl,combine the granola and cereal. Pour in sauce and stir gently until evenly coated. Stir in chocolate chips. Spread mixture in a 9x13 ungreased pan. Wet hands, and press down firmly. put the pan in the refrigerater until cooled and firm, about 15 minutes, then cut into bars.
Feel free to substitute the chocolate cereal and chocolate chips for whatever you like- raisins, M & M's, nuts, craisens, etc.
Adapted from Rachel Ray
2 1/2 cups old fashioned oats
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon oil
Preheat oven to 300°. Mix everything together very well. Spread mixture onto a 9x13 pan. Bake for 45-50 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes, until the granola is a deep brown.
Adapted from David Lebovitz