Now that school has started are you in a quandary about what you can include in your child’s lunchbox that will be delicious and healthy? These apricot granola bars from Adrianna Adarme are easy enough for children to make or help you make.
2 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup flax seeds
1/2 cup diced dried apricots
1/2 cup pistachios
1/2 cup sweetened carob chips
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
Pinch of cardamom
1/3 cup olive oil
1/3 cup good-flavored honey
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
2 tablespoons light or dark brown sugar
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a square 8 x 8-inch or 9 x 9-inch baking dish with parchment paper, being sure there’s slack on opposite sides. (This will help with removing the granola bars.) Lightly grease the pan with olive oil and set aside.
In a medium bowl, mix together the rolled oats, flax seed, dried apricots, pistachios, carob chips, salt, cinnamon and cardamom. In a small saucepan, add the olive oil, honey, maple syrup and brown sugar. Heat over medium heat and stir until the sugar is dissolved, about 2-3 minutes. Pour the olive oil mixture into the dry ingredients and mix until thoroughly coated.
Spread the granola bar mixture into the pan, pressing firming into the corners and edges. (I’ve always been victim of granola bars falling apart so I suggest pressing firmer than you would normally think to do. I’m talking press it down!)
Transfer to the oven and bake for 30 minutes until the top is lightly golden brown and the edges are golden brown. Remove from the oven and cool completely, about 1 hour before cutting. Note: Since I was a bit paranoid about them falling apart, I opted to put them in the refrigerator for about 15 minutes prior to cutting. Use a sharp knife (I used a serrated knife), and slice granola bars into nine.
Yield: 9 granola bars