This quinoa bar has all good, natural ingredients with the good type of fats, proteins and oils from the nuts and a few carbs from the dried fruit.

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This is becoming one of my favourite recipes.  While definitely not low-calorie, it’s all good, natural ingredients with the good type of fats, proteins and oils from the nuts and a few carbs from the dried fruit.  The original recipe called for the bars to be topped with melted chocolate.  Dark chocolate for the extra ‘health benefits’.  I haven’t done this but not due to any lack of want for chocolate … just because I figure it’s already good enough!

I have made this recipe MANY times – maybe I just love the combination of peanut butter and dates with the substance of nuts and quinoa.  I have tried the following substitutions with success every time:

  • Substitute cashews, walnuts, pecans, peanuts for the nuts as well as the almonds, or just use almond meal
  • Substitute almond butter or cashew butter for the peanut butter
  • Substitute oats or puffed rice (crushed rice cakes) for the quinoa 

It’s generally a good idea to process the dates first into a paste, then add the other ingredients.  But, if you’re patient enough with your food processor, just process them all together at once.  Feel free to add more peanut butter, maybe some honey/maple syrup if you like things a little sweeter, dip it in chocolate for a real decadent treat.  The sky’s the limit!

Quinoa peanut butter bar
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Quinoa peanut butter bars

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup quinoa pre-rinsed
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 150 g dates or other dried fruit
  • 1/2 cup raw almonds or other mixed nuts
  • 1/3 cup natural crunchy peanut butter

Instructions

  1. Add quinoa and water to a small sauce, cover and bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer and cook approximately 15 minutes or until all water has been absorbed. Cool to room temperature and refrigerate at least 2 hours...overnight will work.
  2. Using a food processor, add dates and pulse until they form a ball. Remove dates and place in a medium mixing bowl.
  3. Add almonds to the food processor and pulse until finely minced. Be careful not to turn the almonds into paste - you want the nutty bits.
  4. Add fruit, nuts, peanut butter and cold quinoa to the food processor and pulse until ingredients are well combined.
  5. Spoon into a loaf tin lined with parchment paper and smooth the top. Chill in the refrigerator or freezer before cutting into bar form (or squares, depending on how many you want to make!)

Recipe Notes

I keep these bars in the freezer and try to make sure I eat them straight out of the freezer. Once they soften at room temperature, the taste just isn't quite the same ... but to each their own!
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