Friday, May 10, 2013

Fit Friday - Apple Pie Bars

Happy Friday!

Okay, you're probably starting to notice that I am obsessed with really into making my own homemade "Larabar" creations.  But come one, what's better than being able to make your own healthy, super delicious snacks?  You know everything that goes into them, you control the portion size, and you get to lick the bowl when you're done.  It just doesn't get much better than this.

I have to say, I really nailed this recipe.  These bars seriously taste like heavenly bites of apple pie - and who doesn't love apple pie?  The only thing I would probably do differently when I make them again is increase the oatmeal to a full cup (I only used a half cup when I made these).  They could use just a little more backbone.  But otherwise..... these are so awesome!

Apple Pie Bars

13 dates, pitted and chopped
80 grams Trader Joe's dried apple rings (about 20 rings)
1/4 cup cashew butter (or other nut butter)
1/2 to 1 cup dry oats
1 teaspoon cinnamon, or to taste
splash vanilla extract

Give all ingredients a whirl in your food processor until they are well combined and there are no obvious pieces of any one ingredient.  Press into a pan lined with parchment paper and store in the refrigerator.  Cut into 12 bars.  Each bar will yield between 120 and 135 calories, depending on how much oatmeal you use.  Not bad, huh?  And they are so delicious!  Cashew butter works great due to its sweet, mild richness, but you could certainly use almond butter or even peanut butter.  You could always play with your amounts of dates and apple rings (and if you can't get your hands on dates, use an equivalent of raisins, about 1 cup).  I love TJ's dried apple rings because there is no added sugar.  Its just apples.  Awesome!

I hope you have an awesome weekend planned!  And don't forget to show your mom some extra love on Mother's Day.  Presents and flowers are nice, but you know what moms really want?  I can tell you from experience - we just want to know we're appreciated.  Since becoming a mom, I have learned very well that it truly is a thankless job at times.  Sometimes when you've worked so hard with your child, you can only pray that you will see the benefits later on in life in the person he/she becomes.  But when someone notices that you cleaned the house, put away the laundry, fed your child, went to the grocery store, managed to brush your teeth, etc, all in the same day, it's awesome.  You certainly don't become a mom with the expectation of thanks for every little thing you do, but it sure is nice when little things get noticed.

See you soon!  And I have something different for you this Sunday - my husband will be posting for Sweet Sunday!  I can't wait to see what he's whipping up for me.  The only stipulation I gave him was that it had to be blog-worthy.... that might sound like cruel pressure, but hey, the guy ate through my special stash of chocolates, so it seemed fair.  Get ready!