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These fast treats came about one morning when I opened the freezer and alas, no lunch box fillers.  No time to bake, what could I do but invent a nut free, healthy no bake muesli bars?  QUICKLY!

 

Why are they so healthy?

Well the oats are a nourishing, high fibre, nerve supporting food.  The seeds and coconut provide good fats, protein and energy (of the slow release kind).  The cinnamon further stabilises blood sugars.  If you use brown rice syrup, they are also sugar (fructose) free.  These simple treats will sustain, satisfy and nourish your body – they are the perfect healthy snack.

 

Why these are SO much better than any supermarket breakfast or muesli bar…

Here I go, getting on my high horse again.  But the health claims on these bars just make me shudder.  A warning would be more appropriate in many cases.  Many commercial bars have almost as much sugar as a chocolate bar, alarming amounts of polyunsaturated fats (find out why you need to avoid these here) and ‘fruit’ that is more a product of chemistry than nature.  My simple invention is whole and nourishing in ways that any supermarket or even health food brands could never be.  For my detailed analysis of why there’s nothing good or healthy about processed muesli bars, click here.

 

They are just too easy to make, so no excuses for processed bars anymore!

 

Makes approx. 15 squares

 

Ingredients
100 gram (1 cup) rolled oats
60 gram (½ cup) sesame seeds
60 gram (½ cup) pepitas
60 gram (½ cup) sunflower seeds
1 tablespoon of chia seeds or flax seeds, ground is best
60 grams (1 cup) desiccated or shredded coconut
1 teaspoon of cinnamon powder
125 grams of butter
170 grams (½ cup) of raw honey or brown rice syrup

 

Optional
Dried fruit or cacao nibs

 

Method

  1. In a small pot, combine the butter, sweetener and cinnamon over a low heat, stirring until combined (TMX 2mins, temp 90, speed 3).
  2. You have a couple of options here.  For a tastier slice, throw the oats, seeds and coconut into a large pan and toast over a low heat for 5-10 minutes, stirring often (the coconut will colour and the pepitas will start to pop).
  3. OR
  4. Combine the dried ingredients raw.
  5. Add the dried mix to the butter / sweetener mix, (plus dried fruit or cacao nibs if using) and mix until combined (TMX 30sec, reverse, speed 3 – you may need to scrape the sides). See tip below.
  6. Press into a small slice tin lined with baking paper (I use a wet stainless steel serving spoon).  Put it in the freezer for 10 minutes or until set.
  7. Remove from the tin and cut into squares.
  8. It is best to keep refrigerated or frozen.

 

Tip
For a slice that holds together better, use butter or ghee (coconut oil melts more rapidly) and process the mixture so it is finer and sticks together better (TMX 10sec, speed 5). Use the back of a big wet spoon really compact it into the tray. My kids prefer this to a chunky consistency and it is better for holding together in the lunchbox.

 

Variations

Dairy-free and vegan
Use coconut oil or ghee instead of butter.  If using coconut oil, you will just need to make sure it is kept cold or it will fall apart more quickly than the butter version.

 

Gluten and grain-free
Use quinoa flakes (may just need to increase the quantity slightly).

 

Low-fructose
Use brown rice syrup instead of honey.

 

Kids fuss over the seeds or consistency?
Either leave the ones they dislike out and increase those they do like, or grind them up.  You can even process the whole mix of dried ingredients to make a finer, less chunky slice.

 

Remember… to pack into insulated lunch boxes (with a cold pack) from frozen, it will be ready to eat by morning tea!

 

For more inspiring healthy advice and delicious recipes, visit www.wellnourished.com.au.

 

Well Nourished

Well Nourished  

Founded by Georgia, a mum, cookbook author, naturopath with 19 years experience and the creator of The Well Nourished Lunch Box Challenge, Well Nourished delivers wholesome, easy-to-follow recipes targeted to busy families. Readers flock to Well Nourished for inspiring health advice and free, nourishing, family friendly recipes. // www.wellnourished.com.au