New surreality + comforting granola bar recipe

March 26, 2020

Yesterday was hard. We’re all feeling it… the new surreality of living in crazy coronavirus times. Hunkering down at home, spending lots of time with those in our home, trying to navigate this new space of being in each other’s space. Every. Single. Day.

Comforting and nutritious granola bars

I am keenly aware that my family of four + a furry one have it fairly easy. My husband and I have jobs that allow us to work remotely (which is how we both work much of the time anyway). My elementary-aged kids started Zoom classes with their teachers and classmates one week ago. We are healthy. We have food to eat, a yard to play in and space to get away from each other when we need to. And, I try to remind myself of the many times over the past year that I wished the world would slow down so that I could spend more time with my quickly-growing-children. Still, this is a new and strange world for all of us, and yesterday was a hard one.

My almost-8-year-old daughter was literally clinging to my right leg in the morning. My dog was barking incessantly and loudly, mostly right next to me, warning me that someone–anyone–was strolling on the sidewalk. I missed a mid-day work call. My 10-year-old son only told me after his science class ended that he was unable to log in. Come evening, I was mentally and physically done.

So, today I practiced an extra dose of self-care: early morning yoga + baking. And, not just any kind of baking… granola bar baking. We love granola in our house. I baked a batch of granola cereal last week. Today, I whipped up a batch of granola bars to satisfy that afternoon sweet tooth for the little–and big–kids int he house. These high-protein granola bars are easy-to-make, nutritious and easily modifiable for whatever you have in your pantry right now. Plus, they contain quinoa for an added dose of protein, oats for B vitamins and nuts and seeds for immune-boosting vitamins and minerals.

Wishing you peace and good health during these crazy uncertain times!

Chocolate-Quinoa Granola Bars

These granola bars are easy to make and nourishing.
Prep Time40 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Servings: 25 bars

Ingredients

  • 3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 cup quinoa flakes (or toasted quinoa or steel cut oats)
  • 1/4 cup whole wheat flour (use almond or coconut flour to make gluten-free)
  • 1/4 cup roasted pumpkin seeds
  • 1/4 cup roasted almonds, chopped or sliced (double up on seeds to make nut-free)
  • 1 Tbsp. chia seeds
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4-1/3 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 1/3 cup canola or light olive oil
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 egg white
  • Shredded coconut or dried fruit, optional

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In a medium bowl, mix oats and next 9 ingredients (through chocolate chips); combine until well-mixed. Add oil, honey and vanilla; combine until mix is well-coated.
  • In a measuring glass or small bowl, beat egg white until peaks form; fold into mixture.
  • Spread on baking sheet. Using a small piece of parchment paper, press with hands or spatula on mixture to make top even and help mixture hold together.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until lightly golden. Let cool for 10 minutes. Cut into bars. Makes approximately 25-30 bars. Store in an airight container for up to 1 week.