Embracing the Paleo way of life means your food on-the-go options diminish a little. Okay, a lot. Suddenly, leaving the house takes more planning because most portable food items are off the table. Those of us who value our health are okay with this of course, because we know that most portable food items on the grocery store shelves are not actually food. But still, I’m willing to bet that every label reader out there has found themselves hangry at an inopportune time and wished that there were more options. The Lärabar has been a go-to food bar for many, due to their simplicity (only a handful of ingredients) and their lack of soy, corn, dairy, and gluten. Dried fruit and nuts, essentially, they are a great option for those days that planning didn’t happen and you know you’ll be hungry before you have time to get a real meal in front of you.
Well. That was before General Mills bought Lärabar, which did three things:
- Allowed Lära to retire on a sunny island (I’m only guessing)
- Included Lärabar in the list of companies that opposes GMO labeling (more on that here)
- Force us conscientious consumers to make our own bars, because we’ll be damned if we support a company who, like eeeeevil Monsanto, thinks we have no right no know that we’re eating Frankenfood.
We vote with our dollars, folks, and if we buy Lärabars or anything else made by the companies that oppose GMO labeling, we essentially oppose it as well.
The good news is this: bars of the Lära variety are insanely simple to make. Bonus: making them is a whole lot cheaper than buying them. Extra bonus: there is virtually no end to the flavor combinations you can create.
Just how simple are they to make, you ask? Check it out: equal parts nuts and dried fruit. BAM. That’s it. Here are some examples:
Double Chocolate Brownie:
1 C almonds + 1 C pitted dates + 1/4 C shredded coconut + 1/4 C chocolate chips* + 2 T cocoa powder
Coconut Pecan Cookie:
1 C pecans + 1 C pitted dates + 1 C shredded coconut + dash cinnamon
1 C almonds + 1/2 C pitted dates + 1/2 C apricot
1/2 C cashews + 1/2 C almonds + 1/2 C dates + 1/2 C dried cherries + 1/4 C chocolate chips*
1/3 C each almonds, cashews & pecans + 1 C pitted dates + 1/4 C pumpkin seeds* + 1/4 C raisins* + 1/3 C flaked coconut*
The possibilites are practically endless, so feel free to make these babies your own. Add some citrus zest, cinnamon, bacon… Bacon! Next time…
- Throw it all in a food processor (except for ingredients with an * or anything you want to remain chunky- mix those in after), and kick that baby on.
- Process until it’s as fine as you can get it. Add a tablespoon of water if it doesn’t start to clump together on it’s own.
- Mix in any additional chunky ingredients, such as chocolate chips.
- Press into an 8×8 pyrex dish, lined with parchment paper for easy removing.
- Refrigerate for an hour or so before you cut them into rectangles or squares, or you know what? Any shape you want, because these are your bars, damnit! You can also make them round and tell your kids they’re cookies. I won’t tell.
- Wrap in parchment paper and store in the fridge, until you grab one to go.
Whether you make these or not, if you live in California, please vote YES on Prop 37!