When you’re in a rush or when your fuel reserve dips, you’re probably tempted to grab one of the many varieties of energy bars to keep you full or revive your spirits. High fructose corn syrup, an overload of sugar or artificial sweeteners are the mainstays of most energy bars that are available in the market, and they aren’t as fortified with vitamins and minerals as they should be. It essentially means that they aren’t as healthy as they claim to be, and are nothing more than an attractively packaged source of quick calories. Our homemade energy bars recipe is healthy, vegan and gluten-free, and above all easy to make! No baking, no cooking and no fancy technique required. Give it a go!
1 cup almonds, roasted or raw, loosely chopped
1 cup dates, pitted
1 cup raisins
1. Combine the almonds (or any other nut), dates (acts as a sticky binder and naturally sweetens the bar, no sugar added) and raisins (or any other dried fruit, maybe cherries) in a food processor. These ingredients will make the energy bar nutty and chewy. You are free to add other ingredients according to your taste and preference. Popular additions are oats, ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, chocolate chips, chia seeds, and salted peanut butter.
2. Make sure the almonds, dates and raisins break up into finer chunks, without allowing the dates to clump together. You can open the mixer to give the ingredients a good stir and make sure nothing is sticking to the sides or to the blades. Process and pulse again.
3. After you process for more than two minutes, you will notice that the mixture begins to resemble a dough-like ball.
4. Place a wax sheet or parchment paper on the work surface so that the dough doesn’t stick to the platform. Transfer the energy bar dough onto the sheet.
5. Knead and press the dough with your hands to form a thick square. Wrap the parchment paper around the square dough. Refrigerate for an hour minimum, or at best, overnight. If you are looking for a shortcut, you can put them in the freezer for 15-20 minutes.
6. Then, unwrap the energy bar dough and place it on a chopping board. Cut the dough into long bars or smaller squares, as you desire.
7. You can consume a bar immediately. Otherwise, wrap the bars in plastic wraps and store them in the fridge for several weeks. For a longer shelf life of two-three months, store them in the freezer.
Image courtesy: Shutterstock
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