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Quinoa & Cacao Energy Bars

With lots of nuts, seeds, healthy fats, nut butter and of course, as the title suggests, quinoa and chocolate these are sure to be enjoyed by adults and children alike (that is to say they were a hit in office and with my 4 years old!).

I made this a few weeks ago. I wanted to create a healthy chocolate "granola" bar for myself but mostly for our 4 years old daughter. She loves helping out in the kitchen and I knew if I said "chocolate" she would be more than happy to lend a hand (and lick the bowl).

These little goodies will provide you a healthy dose of fibre, protein and vitamin E too (mostly from the nuts & seeds). The chocolate coating is just a bonus and cacao is also loaded with polyphenols which can improve blood flow to your brain therefore improving brain function. Cacao is also helpful when it comes to feeling happy... I think we all agree on that!

Ingredients (makes 10-12 bars)

100g quinoa

100g oats

75g almonds

25g cashews

25g pumpkin seeds

25g sunflower seeds

25g hemp hearts

Pinch Himalayan salt

2 tablespoons vanilla extract

4 tablespoons smooth peanut butter

Date Syrup

10 dates (soaked in 100ml boiling water for 10 minutes)

Raw chocolate coating

100g cacao liquor

50g cacao butter

2-3 tablespoons of maple syrup or coconut nectar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Pinch Himalayan salt

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to gas mark 4 and place the quinoa, oats, almonds, cashews and pumpkin seeds on a baking sheet, bake for 10 minutes and let cool
  2. Blitz the dates and soaking water* to form a syrup
  3. Make the raw chocolate coating by adding all of the ingredient in a bowl over simmering water. Let this cool but not set!
  4. In a large bowl, mix the nuts & seeds with the hemp hearts, salt, vanilla, peanut butter and date syrup until the mix forms a ball
  5. Line a metal or glass baking tin (25 x 25cm approx) with parchment paper, press the mix firmly to set. You want to press as much as possible otherwise the bars will break apart when you cut into them
  6. Cover the nut and seeds mix with your chocolate and leave to cool in the fridge for at least 2 hours. Cut into bars. These will keep in the fridge for 10 days.

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More About The Author - Marie-Eve Maitland

Marie-Eve Maitland Marie-Eve (pronounced the French way and, yes, you guessed it, Henry's wife) is our kitchen and food-wiz and is behind our healthy recipes and also manages our twitter account (get in touch!).  Having graduated in dietetics in Canada, Marie-Eve is passionate about eating, discovering new foods and leading a healthy lifestyle to make sure she in tip-top shape to look after her little girl, Elodie.Marie-Eve loves cooking (of course), weight training, yoga, walking, matcha green tea and chocolate (amongst other things).

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