Be sure to let the bars cool before you cut them, and if you have any extra crumbs left behind from cutting the bars, save them to sprinkle on top of yogurt or use as a granola-like breakfast cereal with milk. Any way you prefer, these nutritious gluten and dairy-free bars are sure to be a hit!
1 cup butter or non-dairy alternative like Earth Balance Buttery Sticks or Shortening Sticks (room temperature)
1 cup light brown sugar
1/3 cup granulated cane sugar
2 large eggs
2 tsp. gluten-free vanilla extract
½ tsp. gluten-free almond extract
½ tsp. salt
¾ tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
2 cups Jules Gluten Free All Purpose Flour™ *
2 Tbs. flaxseed meal
1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
1 cup dried tart cherries or cranberries
1 cup chopped dried figs
½ cup golden raisins or dried blueberries
½ cup chopped dried dates, apricots, or other dried fruit (optional)
(*Note - This recipe calls for Jules Gluten Free All Purpose Flour™ which may be made at home according to directions found in my books, Nearly Normal Cooking for Gluten-Free Eating and The First Year: Celiac Disease and Living Gluten-Free, as well as in various media links on my website. It produces amazing results in all your gluten-free baking!)
Preheat oven to 350 F. Prepare a jelly roll pan (approximately 15" x 10") or cookie sheet with raised edges by wrapping foil over the top of the pan and greasing the foil-wrapped pan with cooking spray, shortening or butter. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, cream the shortening with the sugars, beating until the dough is light and fluffy. Gradually add in the vanilla and almond extracts and eggs.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the Jules Gluten Free All Purpose Flour™, baking soda, flax seed meal, cinnamon and salt. Slowly beat this dry mixture into the first large bowl, mixing until incorporated.
Chop the dried fruit and nuts and stir into the dough. Spread the thick dough evenly across the prepared pan and bake for approximately 25 minutes, or until lightly browned on top and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
Cool fully before cutting or removing. Cut horizontally and vertically (like a window pane) to form brownie-sized bars and remove carefully to a plate. Enjoy!