So I’m doing a juice & food cleanse right now. I’m SUPER excited about it because as you may already know I freakin’ love doing them. It’s not that I think they’re great in the moment, it’s just that I really love how I feel afterwards. The benefits? How clear my skin looks, how much great sleep I get and how differently I end up thinking about food.
I’ll have updates for you on the cleanse soon; in the meantime I’ve been staring at these bars on the counter all of yesterday. I made them last week for Tony because he’s all like I need to get in shape for baseball season — this is as he continues to eat chocolate covered doughnuts for breakfast. I think he could eat just about anything and still look good. No joke.
Anyway these bars are everything I’ve wanted to make for a very long time. My granola bar obsession peaked when my friend Maegan and I traveled around Kansas City. We had the most incredible coconut granola bar at Kaldi’s coffee and ever since then I’ve been dying to make my own.
The wonderful part about granola bars is that you can basically add anything to them that you’d like. This one is fairly simple. The base is made up of oats, honey and a nut butter. The rest? Up to you! You can basically sub any kind of nut for the cashews and whatever kind of dried fruit you’d like for the cranberries. Personally, I think cherries would be fabulous. Or if you want to get real delicious, add some mini chocolate chips. GOD THAT SOUNDS GOOD. ALL OF IT SOUNDS SO GOOD.
Sorry about that caps. Did I mention I’m writing this late at night and dreaming about my usual late night snack of peanut butter, banana and chocolate chips? Also, remember the juice/food cleanse. Forgive me for any spelling errors. I love you.
And… I hope you love these bars! They are FILLING, nutritious and wholesome. If you make them be sure to tag #ambitiouskitchen on Instagram so I can check ’em out. xoxo.
- Serves: 16 bars
- Serving size: 1 bar
- Calories: 207
- Fat: 11.7g
- Carbohydrates: 23.4g
- Sugar: 12.9g
- Fiber: 3.1g
- Protein: 5g
- 1 3/4 cup gluten-free rolled oats
- 3/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
- 1 cup unsalted cashew halves
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds (optional)
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries, coarsely chopped
- 1/2 cup honey (brown rice syrup if vegan)
- 1/2 cup unsalted creamy almond butter
- 2 teaspoons coconut oil
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Line a 9-inch square pan with parchment paper. In a large bowl combine oats, cashews, coconut, chia seeds and dried cranberries.
- Place medium saucepan over medium low heat and add in honey, almond butter, coconut oil, salt, cinnamon, and vanilla; stir until warm and coconut oil is melted with almond butter. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir well to combine and coat the oat/cashew/coconut mixture. Transfer mixture to prepared pan and press firmly down to pack bars tightly and ensure they stick together. The harder you press, the more they will stick together -- so press them in very firmly!
- Place pan in fridge for 1-2 hours or until firm. If you'd like to speed up the process, place the pan in the freezer for 10 minutes. Cut into 16 bars. Bars will keep at room temperature for a week, or longer in the fridge. I like to individually wrap my bars in plastic wrap for grab and go snacks during the week - or keep a few in my car for post workouts.
Feel free to sub another nut instead of cashews and use any type of nut butter you'd like in place of the almond butter. These granola bars are very adaptable! Try dried cherries or apricots instead of cranberries!