Thursday, November 10, 2011

Stop Monkeying Around... Banana Chocolate Chip Granola Bars

Commercial granola bars have so much sugar and fat in them that they might as well be butter cookies.  While granola bars can make for an easy breakfast or snack, some have almost no nutritional value. Choosing ones high in fiber and protein they will keep you satisfied and energized instead of crashing. (I am a fan of the kashi bars). Making your own bars is far less expensive and you can make them as healthy as you want. These granola bars get their sweetness from overripe bananas, VT maple syrup, and a few chocolate chips.  They are high in fiber and protein and low in added sugars making them a great choice.  Flax seed and wheat germ add healthy fats (polyunsaturated and omega 3s) and fiber to make them more filling.

These bars are ready in 45 minutes and will stay fresh for 3-5 days or can be frozen for up to 2 months! Pair one of these up with a lowfat or light yogurt and you have a great breakfast to start your day!

 Banana Chocolate Chip Granola Bars
Makes 12 Bars

1.5 cups of rolled oats
.5 cups of whole grain cereal (grapenuts or all bran)
.5 cups chopped walnuts
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
2 Tbsp flour, more if needed
3 large, overripe bananas, mashed
2 Tbsp maple syrup

Preheat the oven to 250 degrees.  In a large bowl combine the oats, cereal, cinnamon, salt, and flour.  In a small bowl mix the maple syrup and mashed banana.  Add to the dry ingredients and mix well.  Bake for 20-25 minutes.  Allow to cool and cut into bars 4 inches long by 2 inches wide.  

Nutrition Facts: 1Bar
130 calories, 20 g carbohydrates, 5 g pro, 5 g fat, 4 g fiber, 

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