This recipe was created by Dr. Erika Siegel and is just one of the handful of recipes she’ll be offering to those who join the Adventure Baby Boost, a 6 – week get after it accountability program developed by Hike it Baby founder Shanti Hodges.
In our many markets there are huge sections of “health” or “energy” bars to choose from (and be overwhelmed by). You can get dizzy comparing grams of this and that while looking out for hidden, unhealthy ingredients. Most of these processed bars aren’t really that tasty OR healthy, so might as well make your own!
This recipe is based in whole foods with dense, efficient nutrition. It calls for dried fruit, which should always be purchased without preservatives (sulphur dioxide), as many people are sensitive to these preservatives and it really changes the flavor of the fruit. For your nut selections, it is best to choose raw unsalted nuts for maximum freshness and health. You can soak your nuts first for better digestibility, (see below)
Follow the recipe exactly or add your own special flare to (want to add hemp seeds and spirulina in the mix to roll them in shredded coconut- go for it! Bars are fun to make with kids as they can help with every step. You can nibble on these energy snacks fresh from the fridge or freezer (where they are best kept) and pack them to go in lunches or backpacks on the trail. These home-made bars will make you proud, as they are jam- packed with healthy fat, protein and fruit; fueling you with balanced nutrition any time of the day. (Simple breakfast on the go~ yes please!)
We keep our energy bars in the freezer individually wrapped in plastic to ensure maximum freshness and portability.
Fig-Almond Bars with Cranberries
Equipment: Food Processor
Figs are not the sexiest dried fruit around but they are high in calcium and other bone building minerals. Combine that with tahini and almonds and you have a very nutritious, balanced snack!
2 cups raw almonds
¼ cups whole flaxseeds
1 tablespoon organic orange zest
1¼ cup dried figs, destemmed
2-3 tablespoon maple syrup
1½ cup dried cranberries
3 tablespoon tahini
1 tablespoon almond butter
1/4 teaspoon salt
Soaking your nuts first will make them easier to digest. If you desire to do this, cover the nuts (not the flax seeds) in a few inches of water with 1/2 tablespoon of salt for 12 hours. Then rinse, drain and spread the nuts out on cookie sheet. Bake at 150 degrees for another 12 hours. You can bake them longer (24 hours) to have crispy nuts to munch on.
Line an 8”x 8 deep pan or dish with plastic wrap or wax paper. (You can use a different shape pan as long as it’s close to the same size)
In a food processor, pulse the nuts and seeds until they are well broken-down but still chunky. Do not overpulse or it will turn into nut butter. Then transfer this nut and seed mixture to a large mixing bowl.
Roughly chop the dried fruit on a cutting board and then add it to the processor. Pulse until broken down into small chunks, but be careful not to let this turn into mush. If at any point during the process your food processor is having a tough time getting going, at a splash of water. A little bit of water goes a long way and you don’t want ot end up with sticky, wet bars.
Add this mixture to the mixing bowl with the nut and seed mixture.
Add the remaining ingredients to the large mixing bowl with the chopped up fruit and nuts but start slowly with adding the sweetner and salt. After everything is combined, taste the mixture to see if you want to add some more of either.
Then, with your hands, dig in! Mush and mix all of the ingredients together until everything is well incorporated. When the mixture sticks between your fingers, you’re done. You can do this step in the food processor but it may require a lot of stopping, scraping of the sides and the addition of a bit more water. We find it works best when done by hand.
Put the mixture into the plastic-lined pan, pressing firmly to even it out. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour to let it firm-up and for easier cutting. Lastly, cut into desired size bars and seal in an air-tight container for up to two weeks or freeze for up to two months.
Makes 16- 20 snack size bars
Dr. Erika Siegel is a mom, physician, health educator, and wife: by nature, a juggler of life’s abundance. She has the honor to practice and preach Naturopathic medicine in Portland, Oregon, where she focuses on family medicine. Try her awesome kid friendly superfood product, Nourish Me, in your smoothies!
Want to feel awesome this summer? Join Erika and Shanti for the next 6 – weeks in the Mama accountability program Adventure Baby Boost. Program starts April 27th!