I know I got your attention with two of our favorite foods: chocolate & peanut butter. Peanut butter is my most favorite food and I can eat it with most things. (if you have not tried peanut butter tossed with freshly cooked whole wheat pasta, you must try it! yummy!!) So, when I saw this recipe for homemade Chocolate Peanut Butter energy bars, I had to give it a try. There are so many good energy bars on the market, but to have a homemade bar with fresh ingredients from your own kitchen, makes it taste just that much better. I love these with my mid-morning cup of coffee to satisfy my sweet tooth. And my kids gave their stamp of approval too! I hope that you enjoy them as well…but be warned, it’s hard to eat just one. (thank you to http://www.health.com for recipe)
1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup creamy or chunky peanut butter
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups barley flakes or rolled oats
3/4 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup dry-roasted peanuts (or any other nut you like)
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips, divided
1. Preheat oven to 350°. Spray a 13- x 9-inch baking pan with cooking spray.
2. In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, and cinnamon. In a large bowl, beat brown sugar and peanut butter until well combined. Beat in eggs, oil, and vanilla. Stir in flour mixture. Add barley flakes (or rolled oats), cranberries, peanuts, and 3/4 cup chocolate chips, stirring to combine.
3. Spread evenly in prepared pan. Bake 20-25 minutes, until lightly browned and firm to the touch. Cool completely in pan on wire rack.
4. In a small bowl set in a pan of simmering water, melt remaining 1/4 cup chocolate chips, stirring until smooth. With fork, drizzle chocolate over bars; refrigerate until set. Makes 24 bars. Enjoy!