So, I was in Target the other day with my daughter, Olivia, and she was starting to get fed up with being in the cart. She would much prefer walking around, but that also means she basically ransacks every single shelf three feet and under. Since I really just wanted to get in and out of there without incident this time, I headed over to the baby food aisle to find her a snack (because of course the snack I brought for her was NOT going to cut it right now). I saw the HappyTot Fiber & Protein oat bars, and immediately opened up the package, pulled one out and fed it to her (is this normal? pretty much every single time I'm in a grocery store or Target we go to the checkout with lots of half eaten food and empty wrappers....At least I pay for em, right?).
Anyway, she loved these bars, and it kept her quiet until I could feverishly find the Father's Day and Birthday cards I was looking for. A few days later when the box of bars was gone, I thought about ordering more (I hate going to stores and avoid it at all costs when possible), but while they are organic, gluten free and for the most part have legit ingredients, they are really small and I hate wasting all the packaging on things like this. Plus, they are about $4 for 5 bars, which isn't horrible, but not great, either. So, I wanted to make something that would replace these bars, be tasty enough to give Olivia as a "treat," and still be nourishing and made from organic, whole foods.
I made these last night and the verdict is in: she loved em (and so did my husband and I)! We gave her a bar at the gym this morning (hey, sometimes we both have to go to the 7am class at our gym while she hangs out in the stroller!), and they indeed kept her happy. What's more, I felt okay feeding this to her as her breakfast. While I'm not super into feeding her lots of grains, oats are a whole grain, pack a good deal of fiber, protein and iron, and are gluten free (make sure of this when you're buying oats; I used Bob's Gluten Free rolled oats for this. For more info on why Gluten-Free is important, read this).
Next time, I'm going to try and sneak in more veggies like spinach, and maybe try an apple cinnamon one, as well as a savory one with more veggies. Have fun playing around with the ingredients and find something your tot likes!
Hope you and your kiddos enjoy!
Servings: about 20-22 3" bars
6-7 tbsp grass fed butter
1 cup frozen berries
7 organic dates (chopped and pitted)
4 organic eggs, beaten
3 cups gluten free oats
2 tbsp organic hemp powder paste* (mix hemp powder with equal amt of water)
Avocado oil to grease pan
1.) Preheat the oven or toaster oven to 350 degrees
2.) Melt butter in a pan and add the dates and frozen blueberries; stir over low heat until berries are unfrozen and dates are soft. (This is where you can play around with subbing berries for other fruits and/or veggies!)
3.) Remove from heat and add in egg and hemp paste*; mix thoroughly.
4.) Add in the oats. Stir until all ingredients are mixed evenly.
5.) Ideally, use a jelly roll pan. If you don't have that, muffin tins and/or bread pans work fine, but try not to have the mixture only about 1" in height. Grease the pan (I like to use avocado oil since it is suitable for high temperature cooking) & place the mixture in.
6.) Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.
7.) Let cool; cut into bars!
*I use Hemp Helix organic hemp protein powder. I suggest adding water and making a paste out of the powder prior to adding into other ingredients to prevent the powder from absorbing the moisture out of other ingredients.
Thanks for reading! Try it out and let me know what you think!