Friday, April 26, 2013

Foodie Friday: Homemade Nutrigrain Bars

I love granola bars and Nutrigrain bars.  I could go through a box a day.  But that gets expensive.  So I try to find homemade shortcut versions.  Now my versions don't always look as pretty as the store bought kind, but I know exactly what is going in mine and it's a lot cheaper.  Plus, I get to do whatever flavor I am in the mood for at the moment, or several flavors if I'd like.  This time, I did an apple cinnamon.

Apple Filling:
2 apples, peeled, cored, cubed
1 tablespoon of butter
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
tbsp of cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
tablespoon cornstarch dissolved in water (if needed)

1/2 cup of butter
1 egg
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1 cup flour
3 1/2 cups oatmeal ground (measure before you grind and I ground mine up in the food processor)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

First, cut up 2 apples.  I squirted them with lemon to give them a little tang.
(I forgot to peel mine but I didn't notice any difference with leaving the peels once it was cooked)
In a saucepan, I melted a tablespoon of butter & sauteed the apples.

When they started to soften, I added brown sugar, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Let a sauce form and cook the apples until they are soft.

Once the sauce was really thick, I blended it in the food processor. Let this cool while you make the bar dough.

Cream the butter and sugars together, then add the egg. 

Add the vanilla. Add the oats, flour, baking soda and powder and salt. 

Place in the fridge to chill for about 30 minutes so it's easier to work with.

Divide the dough in half.  Spray a 9x13 pan with non-stick spray and press half the dough into the bottom of dish.

Spread the apple filling on top. (you can use any kind of filling, try berries or apricot or anything you feel like eating.)  Roll out the other half and lay over the apple filling.

My dough came apart as I was laying it so I had to piece it back together.....I was impatient and didn't let it set up in the fridge)

Let it cook at 400 degrees for 15 minutes.

If you want to do other flavors, you can use your favorite jam or preserves and just spread those on.