This is a recipe I’ve seen floating around Pinterest for some time and I finally got around to trying out when I realized I had a plethora of peanut butter (always a good thing). These little bites may not look like much, but boy do they pack a punch – not to mention they are crazy addictive.
I found this recipe on Gimme Some Oven and is one of the most popular recipes on their blog. They are similar to a granola bar, but in a miniature and convenient form. They’re filled with oats, peanut butter, honey, coconut flakes and chocolate chips and are wonderfully chewy and full of flavor. The original recipe called for flax seeds and chia seeds, which I left out, but they would add extra protein and crunch if you choose to use them. I played around with the ingredients a bit to suit my tastes, but feel free to stick to the original recipe if you prefer.
These bites are the perfect size to bring with you on the go or if you need a quick snack. I like to pop in one or two before the gym for a little pick-me-up. It’s recommend that you keep them refrigerated (which is how I like my granola bars anyway) but if you choose to keep them at room temperature, just keep in mind that they’ll need to be eaten within a few days or a week.
No-Bake Peanut Butter Energy Bites
adapted from No Bake Energy Bites on Gimme Some Oven, originally seen on Smashed Peas and Carrots
makes about 20 bites
- 1 cup old-fashioned oats
- 1/2 cup coconut flakes
- 1/2 cup peanut butter (I recommend salted)
- 1/3 cup chocolate chips
- 1/4 cup honey or maple syrup (1/3 cup if your peanut butter and/or coconut is unsweetened)
- 1-2 Tbsp coconut oil, melted (optional, but helps keep them together)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
In a medium mixing bowl, combine all ingredients and stir well until combined. Using your hands, roll the mixture into balls that are about 1 Tbsp or 1 inch big. My recipe made about 18 balls. Place on a large plate and refrigerate for 1 hour or more until firm. Store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl
Stir until combined
Roll into balls that are roughly 1-inch big
I had a brownie recipe that I was excited to share with you guys today, but unfortunately the batter just did not come together and I had to add a bunch of extra ingredients to get it to the right consistency. The brownies ended up coming out okay, but I didn’t feel confident about posting the recipe on here when I wasn’t exactly sure what went wrong. They were Zucchini Brownies, which I was excited about because I had never used zucchini in a dessert recipe before and they looked surprisingly fudgy and delicious. Oh well, better luck next time.
Luckily I had a back-up recipe in mind. Lately I’ve been seeing recipes for roasted chickpeas floating around the internet. I was skeptical at first, thinking the idea of roasting canned chickpeas didn’t sound appealing at all but many blogs claimed they were crunchy and addictive. I decided to give them a try and I admit I ate them all by myself in one night.. oops. Luckily they are a healthy snack, low-fat and packed with protein, so you don’t have to feel guilty about eating so much.
These Maple Roasted Chickpeas are a simple 4-ingredient recipe that makes a quick and healthy snack. I chose to use maple syrup because I’ve become quite fond of it over the past few months, but you could alternatively use honey or brown sugar. For a more savory flavor, you could use garlic, cumin, or cayenne pepper for extra heat. There are endless possibilities to how you can prepare them and they are incredibly inexpensive to make. My house smelled like french toast as these were roasting in the oven – mmm.
Maple Roasted Chickpeas
- 1 15 oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1 Tbsp canola or olive oil
- 1 Tbsp maple syrup (I used the fake kind, but if you have the real stuff then go for it!)
- 1 Tbsp brown sugar
- optional: 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 400ºF. After draining and rinsing chickpeas, lay out on a paper towel and pat dry as much as you can.
- Pour chickpeas into a small mixing bowl, along with the remaining ingredients. Stir to combine.
- Spread chickpeas out on a baking sheet lined with foil in a single layer and cook for 40 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes, until they are crisp and browned. Let cool and enjoy
After rinsing and drying your chickpeas, add them to a bowl with maple syrup, oil, and brown sugar and stir to combine.
Arrange chickpeas on a baking sheet and bake for at 400 degrees for 40 minutes, stirring every 10. I didn’t line my baking sheet with foil, but I recommend it because the maple syrup gets pretty sticky.
Chickpeas will look something like this when they’re finished
Today I have a text-only post; I hope that’s okay with everyone. I aim to post recipes twice a week, but this week’s events threw me off schedule and it seemed necessary to pause for a reflection.
This has been one crazy week to live in Boston. Following the tragic Boston Marathon bombing on Monday, the FBI released photos of the suspects they believed were responsible and a massive manhunt went underway that ended up 2 miles away from my house. Shortly before I went to bed on Thursday, I heard on the news that an MIT police officer was shot and killed in Cambridge and though I felt uneasy about it, they weren’t yet sure if there was a connection to the bombing suspects. About an hour after I went to bed, I woke to concerned text messages from friends asking if I was okay and saying that there were reports of gunfire and explosions near where I live. I pulled up the news on my phone and saw that there was a huge shoot-out and explosions just miles away from my house and started to panic. I was unsure if I should wake up my roommates and try to get out of there, or if it was better to stay put.
Shortly after, my roommates woke up and we gathered in Emily’s room to watch the news and listen to police scanners for the next 5-6 hours. We learned that it was in fact the bombing suspects that were causing all of this commotion, and that the two suspects were brothers. The older was wounded and killed, but the younger one escaped and was on the loose. Many of the surrounding towns, including ours, were on lock down and we were advised not to leave our homes. It seemed that the police had the suspect cornered at one point but he then got away and we had no way of knowing where he was. Finally, near the end of the day, the suspect was found hiding in a covered boat in someone’s backyard and after another shoot-out, willingly climbed out of the boat and was brought into custody. We all breathed a huge sigh of relief and finally felt like we could relax a bit.
It was an insane 24 hours that I won’t soon forget and I think I’m still processing everything that happened. I’m thankful for the emergency responders that kept us safe and that all of my loved ones were unharmed, but I will always keep the victims of this tragedy in my heart. I’m more proud than ever to be from Boston and it’s been very heartwarming to see the compassion and support from fellow Bostonians or even those from far away. The more they try to tear us apart, the closer we become and that is what I love about my home.
The other day I was browsing foodgawker and noticed how many carrot cake recipes were popping up. I’ve personally never associated carrot cake with Easter, but apparently many others do. All of a sudden I found myself craving carrot cake and began saving any recipes that looked good to me.
Of course I wanted my carrot cake to be lighter than your average slice, which can contain anywhere from 500 to 1000 calories – eek. I also decided I wanted them to be in the form of cupcakes or muffins. I found this Carrot Cake Cupcakes recipe on Baked by Rachel and thought it looked perfect. Since I slightly cut back on the amount of sugar and eliminated the frosting, I chose to call my version muffins rather than cupcakes.
These muffins have all of the flavor of traditional carrot cake, but at a fraction of the calories. I swapped out white flour for whole wheat flour and used honey instead of granulated sugar. They use applesauce and canola oil to keep them moist, rather than butter. One muffin has just 132 calories, 3.2 grams of fat, and 24.3 g carbs. This recipe makes just 6 muffins, but you can easily double it. They make a perfect afternoon snack or even breakfast!
Healthy Carrot Cake Muffins
adapted from Carrot Cake Cupcakes on Baked by Rachel
makes 6 muffins
- 1/4 cup applesauce
- 1 Tbsp canola oil
- 3 Tbsp honey
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 egg
- 3/4 cup finely grated carrots (about 2 carrots)
- 1/2 cup whole wheat or all-purpose flour
- 3 Tbsp brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice
- 1/8 tsp cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 350ºF. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together applesauce, oil, honey, vanilla extract, and your egg. Stir in grated carrots.
- In a separate small mixing bowl, combine dry ingredients (flour through cinnamon listed above). Whisk together to make sure all is well-incorporated, and stir into wet ingredients just until combined.
- Carefully spoon batter into your greased muffin tin. Fill each about 3/4 of the way full, almost to the top. Bake for 19-21 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool slightly before serving and enjoy
Start by grating your carrots if you haven’t already done so.
Whisk together the applesauce, canola oil, egg, vanilla extract, and gently stir in shredded carrots.
Stir dry ingredients into wet ingredients just until combined.
Spoon the batter into a greased muffin tin, filling each about 3/4 of the way full. Bake at 350 degrees for 19-21 minutes.
The muffins are done when a toothpick can be inserted and come out clean.
Coconut seems to be one of those things that people either love or hate. Though I can understand why some dislike coconut, I happen to fall into the category of loving it. Over the past year or so I’ve grown to love all things coconut: shredded coconut, coconut milk, coconut oil – you name it. The only time I dislike the flavor of coconut is in coconut rum, bleh. Keep that stuff away from me.
Since making those Chewy Biscoff Granola Bars earlier this year, I have become obsessed with homemade granola bars. I’ve been making them 2-3 times a month, trying out all sorts of recipes. Coconut oil has become a staple in my granola bar-making process. It makes the bars wonderfully chewy, with a small hint of coconut. I briefly wrote about the benefits of coconut oil in a post back in February, but if you’re interested in learning more, click here!
Though I adored the Biscoff granola bars, and also using peanut butter or other nut butters in my granola bars, I started searching for a slightly lighter recipe with less sugar and less fat. I came across these Oatmeal Bars on Collecting Memories and knew I had found the one. Her photos of the bars are far more attractive than mine, but oh well. Hopefully mine still tasted just as good!
This recipe combines creamy coconut oil and honey with ground oats, almonds, and dried cranberries. They are no-bake so they’re a cinch to throw together and are wonderfully chewy. I added some chia seeds for a bit of crunch and for their endless health benefits, and threw in some brown sugar and dried cherries as well. The flavor of the honey really comes through and is perfectly balanced by the tartness of the cranberries.
Coconut Cranberry Oat Bars
adapted from Chewy No-Bake Oatmeal Bars on Collecting Memories
makes 12 bars
- 2 cups rolled oats
- 2 Tbsp sliced or slivered almonds (whole almonds will work too – use about 1/4 cup)
- 1/4 - 1/3 cup dried cranberries and/or dried cherries
- 1/4 cup coconut flakes, sweetened or unsweetened
- 3 Tbsp coconut oil or butter
- 2 Tbsp honey
- 2 Tbsp brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- In a food processor, combine oats and almonds. Pulse until they they break down into small pieces, about 15-20 seconds. You may also throw in the dried cranberries if you want them broken up into small pieces, or you can leave them whole.
- In a small saucepan, combine coconut oil, honey, brown sugar, vanilla extract, and cinnamon. Heat over a low heat until melted, stirring. Pour into a medium mixing bowl along with the crushed oats, almonds, dried cranberries, and coconut flakes.
- Stir the mixture together until all of the ingredients are well-incorporated and it forms a large, sticky mass. Press mixture into an 8×8″ baking pan lined with wax paper. Refrigerate for 1-2 hours or until bars have hardened before cutting. Store in the fridge for up to 2 or 3 weeks and enjoy