created by: Pastry Chef Jenny McCoy, of Craft in New York City, for Almond Board of California
Not only are these bars a healthy treat with the great flavor of almond butter and crunch of whole almonds, but they are also an upper-body workout as well. Just like your morning routine, they are quick and easy to throw together, and take a bit of muscle power to pack tightly into shape!
servings 16 bars
3 cups rolled oats
4 cups puffed rice (brown rice recommended)
1/4 cup flax seeds
1 1/2 cups whole natural almonds
1/4 tsp fine sea salt
1/2 cup light brown sugar
2 tbsp maple sugar*
1/4 cup almond oil**
1/4 cup canola oil
1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp honey
1/4 cup almond butter
Coarse sea salt, for topping
Lightly coat a 9”x13” baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. In a large mixing bowl, gently toss the oats, rice, flax seeds, and almonds to combine.
In small saucepan, combine the fine sea salt, sugars, oils, honey, and almond butter. Bring to a simmer over medium-high, whisking any lumps of almond butter smooth, and cook for 2-3 minutes. Slowly pour mixture over dry ingredients while stirring; continue to stir until all of the ingredients are evenly coated.
Transfer entire mixture to prepared pan and firmly press into pan while still warm, taking care to evenly distribute whole almonds. Once evenly pressed into pan, sprinkle with 2 to 3 pinches of coarse sea salt and press perfectly flat (using a flat-sided meat tenderizer can be helpful, but not necessary). Let cool to room temperature.
Using a ruler, measure and score the bars in half lengthwise to approximately 4 ½” in length, and 1 ½” crosswise to make 16 bars; cut bars following scored lines. Trim edges if desired. Store in an airtight container up to one week.
*Substitute with 2 tablespoons light brown sugar, if preferred.
**Substitute with ¼ cup canola oil, if preferred.