Pecan Pie Bars
I am not normally a fan of protein or nutrition bars. I usually find them chalky and dry, and they never seem as filling as they should be given their calorie count. Don’t get me wrong, I have tried quite the variety over the years. They always lure me in with their promise of convenience and ease. Hunger strikes in the middle of the afternoon? No problem! Need a quick breakfast on-the-go? We’ve got you covered! Yet, time after time, I am let down.
All that changed when I found Pecan Pie Larabars. I heard rave reviews from all around the interwebs and decided I must give this new (to me) bar a try. I was in love! Chewy, nutty, sweet – no chalkiness or dryness in sight. Another awesome perk? The ingredient list is only three items long. Three! AND I can pronounce all of them and would be able to identify all three if I stumbled upon them in nature. Pretty cool.
The not so cool downside to them is their price. I can’t remember how much I found them for, but I know I saw them on sale for about a dollar once. So, maybe on their own they’re like $1.50? I should have researched the price before this post, obviously, but you get the point. Assuming they’re closer to $1.50 and I eat one five days a week (the five weekdays, when I would need a quick breakfast or snack the most), it would cost me $7.50 in Larabars – over ten dollars for one every day. Now, more than likely, I’m not eating one every day or even five days a week, but my point is that, for me and my grocery budget, that is a lot on bars.
Convinced I could produce a more economical version of these tasty treats, I decided to find a way to make these at home. I’ve seen a few different versions of copycat recipes, and I created a bit of a mash-up of a couple I thought worked best. Since there are only three ingredients, it must boil down to finding the correct ratio, right? Well, I don’t think I quite nailed it this time. While these bars were delicious, they didn’t hold together as well as I had hoped. I don’t mind it being a little crumbly, but I hope the next batch will stay together a little better. I’m not sure if I just didn’t press the mixture enough or if maybe I needed more dates. I have seen the recipe with more dates and less nuts and with less dates and more nuts, so I will keep playing with it. I will say, the addition of cinnamon was genius! (And they taste much better than they look!)
Pecan Pie Bars
1/4 cup pecan halves
1/4 cup almonds
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 1/2 cup pitted dates
1 tsp water
Place pecans and almonds in the food processor; pulse until crumbs form. Add dates and cinnamon; continue pulsing until dates are broken up. If the mixture is not sticking together, add 1 teaspoon water, and pulse until the mixture starts to clump together.
Line a loaf pan with plastic wrap. Press mixture into pan in an even layer. Wrap the plastic wrap around the mix and refrigerate for 15-20 minutes before slicing.
8 servings | 2 POINTS