Made without refined sugar, these breakfast bars are full of fiber and protein to get you through your busy morning, or a perfect recovery snack after a great workout. I used real maple syrup from my families’ farm in Ohio to sweeten them up a little. Did you know that the syrups most people buy, like Aunt Jemima’s and Log Cabin have no actual maple syrup in them at all? They’re just corn syrup sweetened with sugar and have artificial colors added. Gross!
Real maple syrup comes from a maple tree, which is tapped in the winter for its sap and then boiled down to remove most of the water and become a syrup-like consistency. It takes about 50 gallons of sap to make one gallon of real maple syrup! Since I recently made the vow to cut out all artificial sweeteners, this is a great alternative for me to use in recipes, on yogurt, oatmeal, in tea, etc. And thank god for Ziplock freezer bags, since my mason jar of syrup leaked out while in my suitcase on the way back from Thanksgiving. That could have been a suitcase full of ruined clothes…
I made these bars for a group of TREADers after their 8:30am workout and got the original idea to make quinoa breakfast bars from my fellow Ohio dietitian Lindsay at The Lean Green Bean. They’re full of good proteins from the quinoa, oats, nut butter, and pecans + have some added omega 3s from the flax meal. I’d like to try them with fresh cranberries next time, and maybe substitute the almond butter for pureed pumpkin….
Cranberry Maple Breakfast Bars
• ½ cup whole wheat flour
• 1 cup cooked quinoa
• 1 cup old-fashioned oats
• ½ cup any chopped pecans
• ½ teaspoon cinnamon
• ½ teaspoon baking soda
• 1 tablespoon flax meal
• 1/3 cup almond butter
• ¼ cup natural maple syrup
• 1 egg
• ¼ cup unsweetened applesauce
• ½ teaspoon vanilla
• 1/3 cup dried cranberries (unsweetened)
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray an 8×8 inch pan with non-stick cooking spray. Combine all dry ingredients in a large bowl and mix well. In a separate bowl, combine all wet ingredients. Stir wet mixture into dry until mixed.
2. Pour mixture into pan and pat down lightly with a spatula. Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown.
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