Homemade gluten-free energy bars are an easy, no-bake, nutritious and economical alternative to commercial energy bars.
Best of all, you can substitute your favorite dried fruits, nut butters, nuts or seeds and sweeteners to create your own personalized energy bar. Pack gluten-free energy bars in lunch and travel bags for a healthy, away-from-home gluten-free snack.
3/4 cup nut butter (almond OR cashew OR peanut OR sunflower butter)
3/4 cup sweetener syrup (honey OR GF brown rice syrup OR good quality Agave nectar)
1 1/2 cups roasted raw nuts and / or seeds (almonds, pecans, walnuts, cashews, peanuts, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds- use your favorites in any combination)
1 cup unsulfured dried fruit (cherries, cranberries, blueberries, apricots, pineapple, raisins- use your favorite dried fruits in any combination)
4 cups GF brown rice crispie cereal (I used gluten-free Erewhon Organic Crispie Brown Rice Cereal).
1/8 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper
Place nuts and / or roasted seeds and dried fruit in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse several times, just until the mixture is coarsely ground.
In a large saucepan melt nut butter with liquid sweetener over medium low heat. Stir and watch carefully to prevent scorching. When the mixture is smooth and bubbling cook for about 1 minute. Remove from heat. Add salt and vanilla and stir to combine. Use a large spatula to stir in nuts, dried fruit and cereal. Stir until all ingredients are coated with nut butter mixture.
Scrape mixture on to the prepared baking sheet. Use the spatula to evenly spread the mixture on the pan. Place a large piece of waxed paper over the mixture and use a rolling pin to smooth the top of the mixture. Cover with the waxed paper and refrigerate for about 2 hours before cutting the energy bars into whatever sizes you prefer.
Wrap bars in waxed paper and store in a covered container in the refrigerator.
Yield: About 16 -32 bars depending on how they are cut. I made 16 large bars by cutting the mixture in half lengthwise and then cutting each half into 8 pieces, about 1 1/2 inches wide.
Reminder: Always make sure your work surfaces, utensils, pans and tools are free of gluten. Always read product labels. Manufacturers can change product formulations without notice. When in doubt, do not buy or use a product before contacting the manufacturer for verification that the product is free of gluten.
About.com Guide to Gluten-Free Cooking
Teri was diagnosed with gluten intolerance after decades of symptoms that culminated in malabsorption syndrome. Teri has written numerous health and nutrition articles for the popular website naturalnews.com and was a founding member and moderator of nutritioncircle.org, a nutrition forum for healthcare professionals and students. She is a member of the American Dietetic Association and supports the non-profit organization Gluten Intolerance Group (GIG) of North America as a member.
Email Teri Gruss, MS here.