Homemade Chocolate LARABARS

This post was written before Callan came along. In fact, I was writing this while in labor! Turns out, these were the BEST snacks to have around in the early weeks of having a baby. I had no idea how hungry breastfeeding would make me. I would wake up in the middle of the night desperate for food and these were perfect bites of healthy calories.

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I’m still working on stocking up freezer meals and snacks for Baby Ruf’s arrival. My focus last weekend was quick snacks packed with energy. I made Granola Chews, LARABARS, and Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Bites (recipe coming soon).

Chocolate-LARABARS

My baby doc appointments are in Annapolis which is just over an hour drive from our house. Every time I have an appointment, I have to stop at Trader Joes to stock up. This time, in addition to my normal purchases, I was in search of ingredients to make homemade LARABARS. Really, I just needed some nuts, dates and figs. Somehow, I walked out with nuts, PRUNES and figs. I swear I had dates in my hand!

So, in my attempt to make LARABARS which are typically made from dates, these ended up with prunes. I knew the flavor would be slightly different but the texture should be fairly similar. And since my next appointment isn’t until after my due date, and I’m not making another trip to TJs, I figured I’d give it a whirl.

Success! Next time, I’ll try dates but this is a good substitution, especially if dates are hard to find. I also want to try different flavors and various consistencies. Coconut, cherries or peanut butter would be awesome!

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 C raw, unsalted, mixed nuts (I used a combination of pecans, cashews, almonds, and Brazil nuts)
  • 1 C prunes
  • ½ C figs
  • 1 Tbls coconut oil
  • 2 Tbls cocoa powder
  • 1- 2 Tbls water
  • pinch of salt


DIRECTIONS

  1. Add nuts to food processor until finely chopped.
  2. Add prunes, figs, coconut oil and cocoa powder. Pulse until fully combined.
  3. Add water, 1 tsp at a time, until mixture starts to come together.
  4. Press mixture into a mold. (mini muffin tins, casserole dish, cookie sheet, etc.)
  5. Refrigerate for 2 hours.
  6. Remove bars from mold and slice to desired size (if needed).
  7. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator or freeze.


NOTES
Adapted from Colorful Palate and Avocado Pesto.

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Sweet and Salty Trail Mix

This is our favorite trail mix. It’s super healthy, sweet, and salty. You can vary the ingredients based on your taste, pantry, or dietary requirements. I’ve listed the ingredients we (mostly) use.

trail mix

Sweet and Salty Trail Mix

12 1/4 C. servings

260 calories per servings

INGREDIENTS

1 C. raw pumpkin seeds

cooking spray

1 tsp. canola oil

1 C. whole almonds, unsalted

1 C. pecan halves, lightly salted

2 Tbls. maple syrup

1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg

1/2 tsp. ground allspice

1/2 tsp. sea salt

1 C. dried cranberries (or any dried fruit)

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Preheat the oven to 350. Coat a baking sheet with cooking spray. Put the pumpkin seeds in a bowl and coat with the oil. Spread the seeds on the baking sheet and roast for about 20 min, stirring several times.

2. Place the pumpkin seeds, almonds, and pecans in a medium bowl and stir in the maple syrup to coat. Mix the cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and sea salt in a small bowl. Add to the nuts and stir well.

3. Spread the mizture on the baking sheet and roast for 15 min, stirring occasionally, until dry. Check often to avoid burning. Cool in the pan for 20 min.

4. Place th emixin a bowl and stir in the dried cranberries.

*Adapted from The New Abs Diet Cookbook