Since my last post elicited so many requests for recipes, I thought I would share this recipe. This is not a Larabar, but it has been inspired by their concept. I use toasted nuts, rather than raw as toasting not only gives it a beautiful flavor, but it also reduces phytic acid in the nuts. (You could also soak and dehydrate the nuts before using them in this recipe.) Coconut flakes and coconut oil add creaminess, and dates sweeten and hold it together. This recipe is plump full of the toasted nuts and coconut flakes, with just enough dates to hold it together and sweeten it. The most dominant flavor is the nuts with the coconut and dates fighting for second place.
While still sweet to our tastebuds, it’s significantly less sweet than the usual Larabar, which makes is a better treat for our needs as we have to watch how many even natural sugars we consume. The coconut oil not only gives the balls a nice texture and taste, but also provides a healthy fat to slow down the sugar rise in your body from the fruit.
The recipe is both simple and easy to adapt. If you want to make this more like a Larabar increase the amount of dates you use ( use probably around 10 more dates). With more dates it would become their coconut cream pie flavor. I made these into balls because this recipe is just a tad too crumbly to hold together a bar. But the ball shape gives a better kid size snack anyway (give them 3, and they will feel like they had a special treat, but still have less than a larabar).
If you are looking for a concept closer to a candy bar, this recipe should fit the bill.
Toasted Nut “Larabar” Balls
16 pitted dates
1 scant cup of fine coconut flakes
¼ cup of coconut oil
Scant ¾ cup of walnuts ( or nuts of choice)
In a food processor, combine 16 pitted dates with one scant cup of coconut flakes and ¼ cup of coconut oil. Start processing until the dates are in very small pieces.
Meanwhile, toast a scant ¾ cup of walnuts, or nut of your choice, in a small saucepan over medium heat. Toast until the nuts are starting to brown and fragrant. Chop coarsely and add to the date/coconut mixture and process until the nuts are finely chopped.
Roll about 1 tablespoon of this mixture into little balls. Serve right away or keep in the refrigerator, tightly sealed. They will keep at least several weeks.
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