Every year the month of February rolls around and the first thing that comes to mind is Valentine's Day. Store fronts emit a reddish-pinkish hue and women all over the country anticipate what that special day might bring for her. This year I wanted to make a healthy treat for my fiance to show him my appreciation, so I came up with Berry Love Healthy Granola Bars. I've made many different kinds of granola bars in the past. For these bars, I wanted to use dried fruits that are red to stay with the theme, so I chose cherries, cranberries and strawberries. Then I went with yogurt covered raisins to throw in the color white. What I didn't anticipate was the sweet flavors of this combination to become a flavor explosion in your mouth. I give Berry Love Healthy Granola Bars an A+ and a golden star sticker seal of approval!
I thought about adding red food coloring to make them red in color. Would that have been strange? eh, maybe not.
How are you celebrating Valentine's Day this year?
Chewy Berry Granola Bars
makes 8 servings - prep time: 10 minutes - cook time: 30 min
- 1 1/4 cup dry oats
- 1/4 cup flax meal
- 1/4 cup each dried cranberries, dried strawberries, dried cherries and yogurt raisins
- 1/3 cup each of raw almonds, cashews and macadamia nuts (I used unsalted and crushed macadamia nuts)
- 1/2 cup brown rice syrup
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line an 8 x 8" baking pan with parchment paper and spray lightly with cooking spray. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine oats, nuts and dried fruit. Pour syrup in microwave safe bowl, heat for 15-20 seconds, then pour over dry ingredients. Mix well with a large spoon.
- Pour batter in to baking pan. Press down firmly with wet paper towel or oiled hand.
- Bake the bars for 25-30 minutes for a chewy bar. Bake for 35-40 minutes for a crunchy bar. When the bars come out of the oven, press them again using a wet paper towel. Allow the bars to cool completely in the pan before slicing. The bars will firm up as they cool. Remove the bars by pulling them out using the excess parchment paper. Place on cutting board and slice in to 8 bars. Store in air tight container or wrap them individually in saran wrap for a quick gran-n-go snack.