This week's Craving Ellie in My Belly recipe was very exciting for me; I'd been wanting to try these bars for a long time. These Energy Bars, selected by Liz of My Table, Their Table from Ellie's The Food You Crave book, are a tasty, healthy way to get a granola bar fix.
I am definitely no stranger to the fun of making homemade granola bars. I do it quite often; in fact, I always have a bag of them individually wrapped in my freezer, ready to be taken out in the morning whenever I need one. And it just so happened that I was beginning to run low when this fabulous Ellie recipe came up in the rotation! So, I eagerly embarked on the preparation for these bars.
I never knew you could prep all the ingredients by simply throwing them all in the food processor! Seriously, I thought this was genius. It could not possibly have been easier! No chopping of nuts and dried fruits, and no big chunks of anything in the finished bars. Everything is tiny and uniform in these bars, and the flavors all come together and meld wonderfully.
Now, normally I am the only one in my household who takes advantage of the full stock of granola bars I keep in the freezer. However, that all changed with these bars. My 22 month-old son is addicted to these things! He scarfs down half of a bar, then shoves the other half into his mouth all at once, so eager is he to get to all of that goodness. I'm so happy to be able to share my granola bar love with him. My husband thinks they're awesome, too, so I have to make sure I keep my eye on the rest of this batch!
I do have a confession to make, though. I didn't stick exactly to Ellie's recipe. Based on my own preferences and what I had on hand when I made them, the add-ins changed a bit. I used golden raisins, dried cranberries in place of dried apricots, pumpin seeds in place of sunflower seeds, and then I threw in a bit of dark chocolate and a touch of butterscotch chips. I know, I know, that made them slightly less healthy than they were intended to be, but my, were they scrumptious!
If I had any complaints about this recipe at all, it would be that the bars are way too small to be satisfying. That was our opinion, anyway. I cut 18 bars instead of the 24 Ellie called for, and I still found them to be super tiny. Still, if that's the worst thing I can say about this recipe, then I'd say this was a great success!