Nutty Energy Bars

These nut bars are a favourite in our house!  They are refined sugar-free, tasty, filling, and great for a mid-afternoon energy boost with a cup of tea for us adults.  Or an ideal snack for hungry little toddlers.  The recipe originally came from a magazine clipping (perhaps Waitrose magazine??) that my mum sent me, and has been adapted along the way.  We first tried them when mum brought a box of them to Italy for a family holiday last June because she thought that Little Whisk might like them.  They are topped with chocolate so obviously they were an immediate hit!  At that time Little Whisk was loving anything that she could hold and feed herself so these were perfect, albeit a little bit messy.  If you want to avoid the messy chocolate however, then I am sure they would be equally delicious without.

Anyway, Little Whisk still loves these snack bars and so does everyone else who tries them.  Enjoy!

RECIPE

Ingredients

Bars:

200g Cashew Nuts

150g Pecan nut halves

75g Porridge oats

30g Sunflower seeds

30g Pumpkin seeds

20g Goji berries

20g Dried cranberries

9 Pitted Medjool dates

100g Peanut butter (I always use one that is just peanuts - no added oil, salt or sugar)

2Tbsp Coconut oil

2 Tbsp Honey

1 Tbsp Vanilla extract

1/2 Tsp Salt (optional)

Chocolate topping:

100g Dark chocolate (70% cocoa)

1Tbsp Coconut oil

1 Tbsp Cocoa powder

2 Tsp Vanilla extract

Method

Put the nuts, oats, seeds and fruit in a food processor and whizz to a chunky mixture.  Add the remaining bar ingredients, whizz again until just combined.  Transfer to a deep 20cm x 30cm tray lined with baking paper and press into an even layer with the back of a spoon.  Chill whilst you make the topping.

For the topping break the chocolate into small pieces and melt with the coconut oil in a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water.  Once melted stir in the remaining ingredients until well combined and all lumps are gone.  Spread over the nut mixture.  Return to the fridge to set for an hour.  Cut into squares.

Store in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.