I've been making these muesli bars for the kids for years now but with all 3 kids off to school or daycare this year (sob) I can officially call them 'lunchbox friendly.'
If you want to eat fewer processed foods, then making your own snacks like these is a great place to start.
Store bought muesli bars, especially the ones plastered with statements like 'no added sugar', '99% fat free' and 'no artificial colours or flavours' can be full of rubbish ingredients. (I will be doing a post on how to read product labels next month so keep an eye out for that!)
These use a mixture of seeds instead of nuts, coconut oil instead of butter and rice malt syrup instead of sugar. If you have no problems with dairy then use butter by all means and you could also replace the syrup with either honey or maple syrup (although this means they won't be fructose free).
They are absolutely delicious and really filling too so my kids will having one of these and a piece of fruit in their lunchbox for morning tea next week at school. It will keep them going for hours!
Chocolate Muesli Bars
140g rice malt syrup
90g coconut oil
2 1/2 cups rolled oats
1 cup shredded coconut
1 cup pumpkin seeds
1 cup sunflower seeds
1/4 cup chia seeds
1/4 cup sesame seeds
2 tbs raw cacao
3 ts vanilla extract
1/2 ts salt
Preheat oven to 160 degrees C / 140 degrees C fan-forced.
Line a 20 x 30 cm slice pan with baking paper and set aside.
TMX - melt together the syrup, coconut oil and vanilla extract for 2 minutes / 80 degrees / SP 2. Add all remaining ingredients and process for 20 seconds / SP 4.
No TMX? Melt the syrup, coconut oil and vanilla in a small pot over medium heat. Place all remaining ingredients in a large bowl and toss to combine. Pour over the syrup mixture and mix really well.
Tip the mixture into the prepared pan and press down well.
Bake for approximately 25 minutes. Use your nose with this one, the house will smell amazing and it will look evenly browned. Do not overcook!
Remove from the tin by lifting the baking paper on each side and slice into bars while still warm. Leave until completely cooled. Store in an airtight container or freezer.
Makes 16-20 but you can slice them into whatever size bars you need