Granola bars are always an easy go-to snack, that are perfect for a busy lifestyle. Besides the fact that some protein bars are almost $3 a piece, many times they have a list of ingredients that you cannot pronounce and mostly likely cannot find in nature, let alone the grocery store. Therefore, I decided to make a healthy granola bar that is packed with protein and all natural ingredients that are heart healthy and the ideal snack to get your through the day.
The ingredients used, provide multiple benefits that will fill you up and provide the nutrition your body needs. No processed sugars or hydrogenated oils added.
Raw almonds are filled with healthy fats. While they do contain a small amount of saturated fat, most of the fat in almonds is monounsaturated fat, which is known for its ability to promote healthy cholesterol levels and cardiovascular health. Nuts play a role in decreasing cholesterol levels, especially when you eat them instead of less healthy snacks like potato chips or cookies.
Roasted Cashews provide 13 g total fats, including about 10 g unsaturated fats, per ounce, which can lower your cholesterol levels when you eat them instead of saturated fats. Roasted cashews are also heart-healthy because of their potassium, which supports a healthy blood pressure.
Coconut Oil can positively affect our hormones for thyroid and blood sugar control. Coconut oil can boost thyroid function helping to increase metabolism, energy and endurance. It increases digestion and helps to absorb fat-soluble vitamins.
Dark Chocolate may contribute to improved cardiovascular health. Packed with natural antioxidants, dark chocolate and cocoa sit in the same good-for-you category as green tea and blueberries, when eaten in moderation, with a healthy diet and lifestyle.
Unsweetened Coconut Flakes are packed with fiber, which improves digestion by facilitating absorption and elimination of metabolic wastes. It also improves consistency of blood sugar and decreases fluctuations that contribute to glycemic disorders such as diabetes.
- ½ cup roasted cashews (you can use raw, but I was unable to find them in my grocery store)
- 1¼ cup of raw almonds
- 2 cups of Medjool dates (pitted and quartered)
- 4 Tbsp. coconut oil
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes or shredded coconut
- ¼ cup of dark chocolate (set aside for melting/dipping later)
- In a food processor, combine the cashews, almonds and dates.
- Allow to process until a sticky dough is formed. This takes about 2 minutes, so be patient.
- Add the coconut oil and vanilla and process until well combined
- Add coconut flakes, pulse until just combined. Do not over process at this point.
- On a cookie sheet lined with parchment/wax paper, form equal sized bars or roll into granola bites.
- Refrigerate for 30 mins
- Melt dark chocolate in the microwave in 30 second intervals, until smooth and creamy.
- Dip one side of each granola bar into the chocolate. You can also use a spoon to evenly spread the chocolate over the surface of the bar if you don’t have a shallow bowl to dip the bar into.
- Place the granola bars back onto the parchment paper, chocolate side facing up
- Refrigerate for 5-10 minutes to allow the chocolate to harden.
- Granola bars should be kept refrigerated in an air-tight container or wrapped in parchment paper or plastic wrap.
- Enjoy within 10-12 days