Healthy snacks can be a mom’s best friend, and these high-protein cookie dough bars will help energize your kids through their busy days. Adapted from this recipe for peanut butter cookie dough bites, these bars are nothing more than dates, nuts, and a little chocolate. They’re perfectly healthy, but they taste like dessert. When my children and their friends ask for a second helping, I’m happy to oblige.
Store-bought Larabars cost $1.25 at my local Target, and my grocery bill can really add up if I buy a lot of this kind of snack. These homemade bars cost $.40 each, three times less than the similar store-bought version. They’re great for school lunches, afternoon snacks, and road trips.
1 ounce dark chocolate
1½ cups Medjool dates
½ cup peanuts
½ cup almonds
½ cup peanut butter (single ingredient: peanuts)
1. In a food processor, chop the chocolate into small bits. Remove from the food processor and set aside.
2. Place the remaining ingredients in the food processor and combine until a paste begins to form. You still want to see tiny pieces of each ingredient. You may need to do this in batches, depending on the capacity of your food processor.
3. If the mixture doesn’t stick together very well, add water one teaspoon at a time until a sticky paste forms. Then add the chocolate back into the food processor and pulse briefly to mix it in.
4. Press the dough into an 8×8 inch pan, cover, and refrigerate for about 2 hours.
5. Cut the mixture into 10 bars and store them in the refrigerator.
What snacks do you depend on to get your family through a busy afternoon? Please share your favorite healthy snacks in the comments.