My husband, who has an extra long sweet tooth, rarely complains when he opens his lunch cooler to find only a sandwich, apple and a yogurt. Even though we both know a homemade brownie or even a piece of chocolate would make his day much happier. Most days, he quietly accepts the lunch I pack for him.
This idea for a granola bar has been swirling around in my head for awhile now. It contains all the flavor components that I know my husband likes. The best way of describing it might be peanut butter cup - meets rice krispie treat - meets peanut chew. A simple ingredient list with few steps, I can toss it together quickly and store it in the freezer for days when I can't quite find the time to restock my husband's favorite chocolatey desserts.
I finally got around to making it for him the other day. Unfortunately, and unbeknownst to either of us, there was a mix up with my husband's scheduled colonoscopy. Instead of taking place in July as we both thought, he was expected bright and early the next morning. Which meant he could not eat a thing the day I made this new treat.
And to make matters worse, I made him critique these photos for the blog, while his stomach grumbled for the dinner he couldn't have.
Oy, bad wife!
On the bright side, my husband is now happily munching his way through the batch of bars. Apparently, he started sometime around midnight while I was fast asleep. When I awoke, it was to a cup of freshly made coffee and the comment "those bars are awesome - you need to make more!" Perhaps I'm not a completely crappy wife.
For my taste, these are sweet. I like to take a few bars and cut them into small squares for myself. Then I wrap them in parchment paper, tuck them into a container or small ziplock bag, and store them in the freezer until I have a craving. They thaw fairly quickly - in just 30-45 minutes they are soft enough to eat.
But for the rest of you chocolate peanut butter lovers, just pop them in the fridge for up to a week. Not that they'll last that long...
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup unsalted peanuts, roughly chopped
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 cups brown rice krispie cereal
1/4 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup peanut butter
1 cup brown rice syrup
1 tablespoon vanilla paste
pinch of salt
Line an 8-inch square pan with parchment paper.
In a bowl, toss the oats, peanuts, chocolate chips and rice krispies until evenly combined. Set aside.
In a large saucepan, melt the oil, butter and syrup over medium-high heat, about 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the vanilla and salt. Remove from heat and fold in the cereal mixture with a rubber spatula. Tip: The chocolate chips will melt during this step, allowing the chocolate to be evenly distributed throughout the bars. Transfer the mixture to the lined pan and gently press into an even layer with the spatula. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Cut into even bars.
1. Return the cut bars to the pan, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 1 week.
2. Wrap each bar in parchment paper and stack in a container or ziplock bag. Freeze for up to 3 months.
Yield: 8-10 bars