When you have children there is a never-ending call for snacks. Their growing bodies require frequent munching, car rides go more smoothly with food in tow, you want to send a birthday treat to school, and the list goes on.
Busy parents often rely on the grocery store to supply options for easy snacks for their children. While we have come a long way in what the store shelves offer, many snacks can be made quickly at home. Making your own snacks cuts down on the salt, sugar and unhealthy fats that are found in most packaged goods. Granola bars are a perfect example. Usually loaded with refined sugar and fat, the homemade version uses healthy fats from nut butter and sweetness from honey. Best of all, they can be tailored to fit what your family enjoys and there is no baking required!
2 1/2 cups quick cooking oats
1/2 cup organic, juice-sweetened dried cranberries
3/4 cup pumpkin seeds
2/3 cup honey
2/3 cup unsalted, sugar-free peanut butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
1. Stir together oats, cranberries and pumpkin seeds in a large bowl.
2. In a small bowl, mix together honey, peanut butter and salt. Heat slightly in the microwave for 30 seconds or until the mixture loosens up.
3. Add the honey mixture to the oat mixture and stir together until everything is well coated. If the mixture seems too dry, add additional honey, 1 teaspoon at a time.
4. Line a 9-inch pan with parchment paper. Press the granola into the bottom of the pan. Cover and refrigerate until set, about 4 hours.
5. Once set, turn granola onto a cutting board and cut into small squares.
There are endless combinations for this recipe. Agave nectar can replace the honey, almond butter can stand in for the peanut butter, or try swapping slivered almonds and dried cherries for the pumpkin seeds and cranberries. Whatever you decide you can feel good knowing you’ve given your family a healthy snack and you didn’t have to spend all day in the kitchen.
Jessica is a stay-at-home mother of three. She enjoys learning how to make things from scratch. She can be found with her nose in a book or sharing her life on Daftly Domestic.
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