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Sunday, September 9, 2012

Homemade "Lara" Bars

We eat more than our fair share of Lara Bars around here. Half my crew is allergic to gluten and Lara Bars don't have any. I love that they have only a few ingredients, are "raw" (uncooked) and unprocessed, and are easy on the go snacks.  I don't love how pricey they can be. 

My neighbors will be happy to hear that I finally got myself a food processor! And it's glorious ORANGE! I thought I'd try out this Lara Bar recipe at home and if the taste was comparable and the price lower, I'd make it another regular recipe. Note (I suggest getting your dates from Amazon.com, as they have them at almost a fourth of the price as my grocery store.) 

Two of our favorite flavors are Cherry Pie and Cashew Cookie, so those are the two I made. Note: I included sunflower seed butter only because I have a jar and my kids won't eat it any other way. If you don't want to use it or don't have any, just increase the nuts by 1/3 c.


Cherry Pie Raw Bars

Ingredients:

1 cup dates, pitted & roughly chopped
1 cup dried cherries (or dried cherry-flavored cranberries)
1 c raw almonds
1/3 c sunflower seed butter
1/2 tsp cinnamon 
olive oil (for your hands)

Directions:

- Blend the dates and cherries in a food processor until it forms a pasty ball. (Your processor might make a weird sound.)

- Remove the fruit paste and place in a mixing bowl. No need to clean food processor at this point.

- Pulse almonds until they are finely chopped (yet before they turn to almond meal).

- Oil your hands. Knead the nuts and cinnamon into the fruit paste until the nuts are incorporated.
- Shape into bars or balls and wrap. 

Note: I like to freeze mine so they last longer. I just pop them in my purse for later and they thaw quickly.


Cashew Cookie Raw Bars 

These are our favorites, and we think they are even better than the cashew Lara Bars!
Directions: Simply omit the cherries in the above recipe and replace the almonds with cashews. Add a sprinkle of sea salt before wrapping. Enjoy!

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