“MOM MOM, Can I have a snack?”
How many times do you hear that in your house? It is a constant echo around mine. I just want my girls to have something healthy. They would love to walk around with Cheeto stained fingers if I let them. I don’t want them to glow in the dark when they go to bed so I often opt for a healthy snack instead.
Ok kids just go have a date bar. Date bars you ask? Who eats dates? Aren’t dates just the more glamorous cousin to the dreaded old lady prune? Dates just haven’t quite committed to the Centrum silver and reverse mortgage yet. Dates should be cool again because they are TASTY.
My friend Lucy Williams (super smarty, healthy cooking and once tried out for Martha Stewart’s Apprentice) dropped a few of these off the other day and I couldn’t believe what I was eating. They tasted just like Larabars. You have seen these in the protein bar section of every health food market and grocery store. They aren’t cheap. But they are good. Their slogan is “Just fruit and Nuts”
But the homemade version that I made was WAY better. I could not stop eating them. They have the most wonderful flavor. You will love these.
Look at just the pure awesomeness of these ingredients. Dates, cashews, almonds, unsweetened coconut, vanilla (not pictured) and coconut oil and a touch of water. The dates that I used were Medjool dates. It says they are the best dates under the sun. I don’t know about that but they were delicious. They did have pits in them so I just squeezed them out with my fingers. If you accidentally leave a pit in you will know immediately by the horrible sound your food processor makes and you will have to throw away the batch and start over so your children don’t crack a tooth on your healthy snack.
Take the cashews, almonds and coconut flakes and put them in a food processor and pulse until totally ground.
Then add the dates, coconut oil, water and a tsp of vanilla (optional). Pulse the processor until the ”dough” forms a ball around the blade. It will be very sticky.
Smoosh (yes smoosh) the dough out on a parchment lined cookie sheet or pan. My dough was so sticky I dusted some more coconut flakes on top. Functional and yummy.
Now pop the tray in the fridge for at least 2 hours so they get hard enough to cut. I used a pizza wheel, which worked great. I stored them in a wax paper lined Tupperware in the freezer and they are ready to go in a lunchbox or a happy kids mouth.
Not including the fridge time these took all of 6 minutes to make. Well worth it.
You can totally vary this recipe by keeping the dates and oil and substituting your choice of nuts, maybe some chocolate chips. Lucy made some with pecans like tasted like pecan pie.
If you want to skip the bar cutting process just roll them into bite sized balls and freeze on a sheet pan until totally frozen then place them in a Ziploc bag just like these other No bake energy balls I made that were a hit in my house.
Coconut Cream Larabars recipe adapted from my whole food life
15 Medjool Dates 1/2 cup almonds 1/2 cup cashews 3/4 cup shredded unsweetened coconut 2 T coconut oil 2 T water 1T Vanilla
Mix the almonds, coconut and cashews in the food processor until fine. Then add the dates, oil and water and pulse until a dough forms. Line an 8X8 pan with parchment paper leaving enough room for some to come out the sides. That way, the bars will be easy to remove and cut with a pizza cutter. Press down the down so that it is packed well and place in the fridge to set. It will take an hour or two. Slice and eat. These should keep in the fridge for a couple weeks.
I’m totally trying these. I just shelled out 6 bucks for 4 Larabars, These look much better anyway. Thanks, Wendy!
Yum! These sounds delicious! I can’t wait to try them.
Oh my goodness these sound amazing! I eat a Paleo diet and this is completely Paleo-friendly so I’m going to give it a try!