Back to School Oat Bars

oat-bars-done-wsThis week Lisa Corrado, long-time New Canaan resident and owner of Lisa Corrado Nutrition, shares the perfect healthy back to school snack recipe! Packed with nutrition, these bars will really boost the energy of your student heading off on their first day. Pair them with a piece of fruit for breakfast or enjoy as a mid-day snack. These can be gluten-free by choosing rolled oats that are specifically labeled as such.

Back-to-School Oat Bars

2 cups rolled oats (not quick-cooking) 

1/2 cup raw pumpkin seeds 

1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds 

3 tbsp chia seeds 

1/2 cup dried fruit like raisins, cranberries, dates; cut into small pieces if larger than raisins 

1/2 cup maple syrup 

2 tbsp unsalted butter plus more for the pan 

Preheat oven to 325º. Butter an 8-inch square pan. Spread oats and seeds on baking sheets. Bake for about 20 minutes, stirring twice occasionally for even browning. Transfer to a medium bowl. Stir in dried fruit. Put maple syrup and butter into a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low for about 10 minutes or until syrup starts to condense and thicken (similar to soft ball stage) . Pour hot syrup over oat mixture and stir to combine. Quickly spread mixture into buttered pan and pack down evenly. Cut into bars. Cool. Separate bars and store in a sealed container.

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Download the printable Oat Bars PDF [ http://lisacorradonutrition.com/recipes/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/Oat-Bars.pdf ]

Lisa Corrado, a long-time resident of New Canaan, is the owner of Lisa Corrado Nutrition. Lisa is celebrating 10 years of providing nutrition services and is the author of a Moment in a Busy Life blog. [ link: http://lisacorradonutrition.com/blog/ ]

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