Healthy, vegan and absolutely delicious raw oat bars for breakfast. They are the perfect morning choice or a late afternoon snack, with the balanced flavours of sweet, dried pineapples and a hint of cinnamon.
You know how I keep telling you that my fussy eater has a sweet tooth? Well, the truth is that I’m no better than he is. I have the same sweet tooth and sometimes I really struggle to say ‘no’ to a chocolate bar. Because of this, I’m always keen to have some healthier alternatives in my fridge to keep me going and stop me from reaching out for chocolate.
This is why raw oat bars or energy balls are so amazing. You can get that sugary hit without any guilt. I used to make them on a weekly basis as my Sunday routine, but going through hundreds of lockdown days in the past year, I lost track of keeping these habits.
A month ago, during my weekly grocery shopping, I caught myself buying ‘healthy, gluten free, flavour free, extra expensive’ bars. After I added a box of these raw oat bars to my trolley, my lovely eater said, ‘you know that you could make much better than this’. And this was when my three years of talking about home cooking and making everything from scratch were used against me. The only thing I had left to do was remove the box from my trolley and put it back on the supermarket shelf.
On the way home, I started thinking about different flavours and texture combinations. I wanted something sweet, crunchy and smooth at the same time (crunchy and smooth in the same recipe… easy task!). I remembered that in my cupboard, I had an old pack of pineapples, which could give me the sweetness. I wanted some warmth, which could come from a gingerbread spice blend like cardamom, nutmeg or even cinnamon. Lastly, I wanted chocolate! Not too much, but still… just a gentle hint. Long story short, this is how, on a bus I created a true hit – pineapple and cinnamon bars.
As always, take my recipe as a guide, but you can always improvise and amend this recipe to your needs. There is no need to rush to the shop and buy dried pineapples, just use whatever you have in your cupboards:
- Dried pineapples – you can change this ingredient to any type of dried fruits: mangos, apricots, cranberries.
- Nuts – any kind of nuts will work for this recipe.
- Spices – if you don’t like cinnamon or nutmeg, you don’t need to use them. These spices add extra heat to your bars, but you can skip them.
3 medjool dates
50g dried pineapples
50g nuts (cashews and pistachios)
30g cocoa nibs
½ teaspoon of cinnamon
¼ teaspoon of nutmeg
1 tablespoon of honey
1 tablespoon of coconut oil
- Add the dates and pineapples into a bowl with the boiling water and soak them for 10 minutes or until they are soft.
- Add all the ingredients into the food processor (except the chocolate) together with the dates and pineapples and blitz everything for a minute until the paste is smooth.
- Line a dish with a baking sheet. Add the oat bar paste and gently press down, to level out the mix. Keep it in the fridge for a couple of hours or overnight.
- Melt the chocolate. Take the bars out of the fridge and drizzle with some of the melted chocolate. Cut them into bite-size chunks. You can sprinkle coconut flakes on top for texture.