Again, a concept recipe....my favorite. So easy and nutritious and great to pop into the lunchbox! These come out crunchy/chewy/sticky depending on how long and hot you boil the sweetener. If they are too sticky, just keep them in the fridge. The rice crispies make them...well...crispy! You could try another cereal too. Customize these bars however you like. Next time I plan to add some spices to them - cardamom and coriander maybe? Cinnamon is always a pleaser! Try some cayenne for a little kick. To make it more Lara Bar-like, you would swap dates for the sweetener, leave out the rice crispies, throw everything into the Vitamix and voila!
These were adapted from a recipe here - http://glutenfreecooking.about.com/od/glutenfreesnackrecipes/r/glutenfreeenergybars.htm
- 1 cup nut butter
- 1 cup liquid sweetener (I like rice syrup and maple syrup. Honey is also good. When I used agave they were super-sweet!)
- 1 1/2 cups or more nuts and/or seeds (almonds, pecans, walnuts, macs, brazils, sunflower, sesame, pumpkin, etc.) I used brazil nuts, macadamia nuts, sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds.
- 1 cup unsulphured dried fruit (cherries, cranberries, blueberries, apricots, pineapple, coconut, Elizabeth's homemade raisins, figs, etc.) I used tart fruit such as cherries, cranberries, and then a few blueberries for variety.
- 2-4 cups GF brown rice crispy cereal. I used unsweetened Erewhon Organic Crispie Brown Rice.
- 1/2 teaspoon or more salt - to your taste (I like a little hint of salt in my sweet treats.)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- spices if you like
Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
Pulse nuts and seeds in a food processor to coarsely chop.
Pulse dried fruit in a food processor to coarsely chop.
In a LARGE pot, heat liquid sweetener over medium low heat until boiling. Stir often to prevent scorching and to keep the heat evenly distributed.
Stir in nut butter and heat until it bubbles. Cook for about 1 more minute.
Stir in salt and vanilla.
Use a large spatula to mix in nuts, dried fruit and cereal. Coat all ingredients well.
Scrape mixture on to the parchment line baking sheet. Place a piece of parchment paper over the top and press down. Use a rolling pin to smooth the top of the mixture and spread it evenly on the sheet using the sides of the baking sheet to help you get an even thickness to the bar. Shape the sides if you like.
Place covered in refrigerator for about 2 hours before cutting. Wrap each bar and store in a covered container in the fridge.