I really like this idea – you can control the ingredients and reduce waste – from GuyGourmet:
Granola could use a good PR team. Big brands have slandered its wholesome name in recent years, sullying it with highly-processed iterations. Search for a decent granola bar in your supermarket and you’ll find only candy bars masquerading as health food, snacks that will fill you with empty, fast-burning calories that spike your blood sugar. Yes, it would seem that the iconic potpourri of grains is suffering from some image issues.
But this wasn’t always the case, and granola didn’t rise within the world of health without reason. Before being corrupted by low-cost sweeteners, the granola bar was a humble yet substantial foodstuff. Built of grains, nuts, and fruit, it offered a potent, hunger-staving blend of fiber, plant protein, and antioxidants.
Fortunately, in its new health-focused cookbook, Mindful Eating, Miraval Arizona Resort & Spa has created a 110-calorie bar that meets these specifications. Unlike brittle, prepackaged versions, these peanut-buttery bars are made from all-natural ingredients and break as softly as fresh-baked cookies. Plus, they’re easily customizable. Sub in your favorite fruits and nuts, add coconut or vanilla, or pour in protein powder to convert them into post-workout bars. They make a quick and inexpensive breakfast or, wrapped in cellophane, a portable snack that will survive a day in your bag without refrigeration.
Call it a comeback?
Miraval Multigrain Nutrition Bar
Recipe by Chad Luethje, Executive Chef at Miraval Resort & Spa
What you’ll need:
2 cups rolled oats
¼ cup sesame seeds
2 Tbsp almonds, chopped
1 Tbsp cashews, chopped
1 Tbsp ground flaxseed, optional
½ cup water
½ cup multi-grain cereal, like this one from Bob’s Red Mill
¾ cup creamy peanut butter
½ cup honey
1 cup mixed dried fruit (raisins, cranberries, cherries, apricots), roughly chopped
Pinch kosher salt
How to make it:
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Combine oats, seeds, nuts, and flaxseed, spread onto a sheet pan, and bake until light brown, about 10 to 12 minutes. Pour the warm mixture into a large bowl.
2. Boil water in a medium saucepan and remove it from heat. Add the multi-grain cereal and allow it to absorb the water, about 2 minutes. Stir in peanut butter and honey, and set the mixture over medium-low heat. Stir constantly until the mixture thickens and pulls away from the sides, about 2 minutes.
3. Mix the fruit and salt into the peanut-butter mixture, then immediately pour into the bowl with the grains. Using a rubber spatula, stir until the grains are evenly coated.
4. Grease an 8×8-inch baking pan with cooking spray, transfer the mixture to the pan, and press it into a uniform ½-inch thickness. Move the pan to the refrigerator and allow it to chill for at least two hours.
5. Cut into 1½-inch by 1¼-inch bars. Serve immediately or wrap individually in plastic wrap. Bars will keep for two days at room temperature or four days refrigerated. Makes 30 bars.