There are labels for food and labels for people that eat certain foods. I’m not sure I like labels much.
I have been fascinated with vegan food lately, but as I’ve told you before I don’t have any intention of becoming a vegan. Even not being a vegan, I found that I actually felt a little guilty the other day when I had a cheese and egg sandwich. That’s sort of weird. I felt like I was cheating by eating non-vegan food. That got me thinking about all of the various food labels and got me wondering how I would label myself. I suppose I just love food. Today I might enjoy a burger. Tomorrow (or for the next three weeks) I probably won’t eat any meat. The next day I could be a vegan. If I’m required to come up with a label, I think I like being a moderationist. 🙂
I’ll eat anything and everything, but I like to switch it up to keep my taste buds happy, my waistline guessing, and my husband from being dragged along unwillingly for whatever food ride I’m on at the moment.
These bars happen to fit into the category of vegan if you either skip the chocolate chips or go with the dairy free versions that are out there, but whether you’re vegan or not, these bars are a delicious snack to chomp on. They taste like a nutty granola bar, but in reality they are just a fruit and nut bar.
It was actually fun watching the cashews and dates turn into a mushy mix. Yes, I was entertained by this. I guess that’s what happens after being home bound all weekend from our first snow storm of the season. I’m not complaining at all because I loved having no plans for the first time in weeks.
You know what I love best about these bars? I feel really great when I eat them, not because they are vegan, but because they are super duper healthy and all natural. They help to counteract the fatty-tacular burger I had earlier in the week. See, moderationist. 🙂
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Energy Bars Recipe
(Make 12 bars)
- 1 and 1/2 cups raw cashews (equivalent to 230 grams)
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup tightly packed Medjool dates (equivalent to 190 grams) (pits removed)
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 to 2 teaspoons water
- 3 tablespoons mini chocolate chips
Note: Per the source below, this is a raw/no-bake, and dairy free option (if you use non-dairy chocolate chips).
- Add the cashews and salt into a food processor and process for 3 to 4 seconds, until the cashew crumbs are just smaller than peas.
- Add in the dates and vanilla extract. (Make sure the pits have been removed, even if you buy pitted dates you’ll want to check them.)
- Process the mixture until it comes together, for about 15 seconds, or longer if needed. The mixture should stick together easily when you squeeze it between your fingers. If it doesn’t stick or it’s still a bit crumbly, add a very small amount of water (1 teaspoon at a time) and process it again. I added 2 teaspoons of water.
- Mix in the mini chocolate chips. You can use the processor to mix them in but I used a spatula so that the chocolate chips didn’t get all beaten up.
- Line an 8 inch square pan with a piece of parchment paper so that there’s enough extra on the sides to lift out the bars out of the pan later. Scoop the mixture into the pan and smooth it out until it’s level. Push down firmly all over the mixture. The more you pack it down the better the bars will hold together. I used the bottom of a dry measuring cup to help pack it down.
- Place the pan into the freezer for at least 15 to 20 minutes and then slice it into bars. The bars can be fragile, so handle them carefully.
- Store them in a freezer safe bag in the freezer.
Source: Oh She Glows
Here are some other awesome healthy snacks.