You know those little bags of leftover nuts, dried fruit, and cereal that collect in your pantry? These Fruit and Nut Bars are the perfect way to use them all up. In fact, I affectionately refer to these bars as “Everything But the Kitchen Sink Bars” because I use just about anything I can find in them.
This recipe is so versatile, it is virtually impossible for these things to go wrong. What have you got in your cupboard? Dark chocolate, dried cherries, cheerios? Go for it! Prefer peanuts, apricots and raisins? No problem! The only limit to the potential of this recipe is your imagination. You should never have to hit up the store to prepare this delicious snack, just use what you have on hand! I like to add a variety of spices to the mix too, anything from turmeric to curry powder!
There are also a variety of ways you can prepare these bars. We love them in bar form, but if I don’t have time for that, I just toss them together in a bowl and use as a snack or yogurt topping. I also like to toss some in a baggie for a great snack to go. If you are restricting calories try to use a large portion of Cheerios or other unsweetened cereal, since they are much lighter and lower in calories than the nuts. I love the texture that the cereal adds.
In this particular variety, I used light corn syrup. But you can also use brown rice syrup (maple syrup isn’t quite thick enough though, so I would avoid that).
I hope you will have as much fun with these Fruit and Nut Bars as I have! Such a fun way to use up the little odds and ends you have laying around the kitchen.
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Homemade Fruit and Nut Bars
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Preheat the oven to 325 F. Line an 8 inch square baking pan (or 7”x 11” glass baking dish) with parchment paper. Spray the parchment with non stick cooking spray to prevent the bars from sticking.
Mix the nuts, cereal, and dried fruit together in a bowl. Add the corn syrup and add a pinch of salt. Stir and mix well. Press into the baking pan using a wooden spoon or additional piece of parchment paper.
Place in the oven and bake for 17-20 minutes until lightly browned on the edges. Let cool for 20 minutes and slice into bars. Store at room temperature for three days, in the refrigerator for up to two weeks, or freeze them.
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
The Nutritional Values provided are estimates only and may vary based on the preparation method.
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