When I’m stressed, sleep-deprived (thanks physics!) and hungry after a really long day, I’m definitely guilty of eating whatever’s in reach as soon as I get home. Most of the time that’s a piece of fruit or leftovers from recipe testing for the blog or book (aka a reasonably healthy option), but sometimes it can look a little bit less like an apple and a little bit more like half a bar of dark chocolate…
That’s where these come in – healthy, satisfying and super easy to make on a Sunday night. They’re so simple you can easily throw them together while watching Netflix – I speak from experience!
They’re also great as an on-the-go breakfast – while they do have a bit of sugar from the maple syrup and dates, they’ve also got lots of healthy fats and protein so munching on one of these before leaving the house is a much better option than skipping breakfast. You can even crumble one up over a bowl of nut milk or coconut yoghurt if you’d like.
Nuts, coconut, dates, a bit of dried fruit if you want + a mixture of coconut oil, maple syrup and almond butter to mix it all together = delicious homemade granola bars which you can jazz up if you like (in case you were wondering, a handful of chocolate chips in there is a really good decision). Add in some apricots, change up the nuts you use (pecans are amazing) or leave them simple – it’s your choice. Enjoy!
- 1/4 cup (60ml) coconut oil
- 1/4 cup (60ml) almond butter
- 1/4 cup (60ml) maple syrup or honey
- 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract or vanilla bean powder
- 2 cups (200g) raw whole almonds
- 1 cup (80g) unsweetened shredded/dessicated coconut
- 5 soft, squishy dates, pitted
- 1. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F and line a square baking tin with parchment/greaseproof paper.
- 2. In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the coconut oil, almond butter, maple syrup and vanilla until warmed through, stirring constantly. Try not to eat it all!
- 3. In a food processor, blitz together the almonds, dates and shredded coconut until you have pieces the size of breadcrumbs. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl, then pour in the liquid mixture and use a spoon or spatula to stir very well to combine.
- 4. Grab your lined tin and press the mixture into it very firmly. Bake for 25 minutes, until golden brown, then remove from the oven and let cool completely before cutting into 20 small pieces. Store the pieces in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week or the freezer for up to 3 months. Enjoy!