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Becky C

Substitutes For Granola/energy Bar Ingredients?

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I have a granola/energy bar recipe that I formulated myself before going gluten free. I work asleep overnights and 3 awake morning hours at a group home, and most mornings are crazy, so I like to have something I can eat quickly and that will sustain me throughout the morning. I have tried several energy bars (both gluten-free and not), but nothing seems to sustain me as well as my own recipe--possibly because I also have some other conditions and this recipe is specifically tailored to my needs. Besides, the commercial energy bars are expensive, and if I buy the ingredients in bulk I can save a lot of money.

I have read a few of the articles on oats. I will check to see if the ones I have are specifically gluten free, and if not, buy some that are, and try them as oatmeal before including them in the bars. Substitution ideas are welcome though. Other than that, I think it's mainly the wheat germ and oat bran that I need substitutions for. Actually, I'm not sure what their exact function is or if they're absolutely necessary--I took several recipes, looked up the nutritional values for each ingredient, and made my own from a combination of those other recipes, as well as my own experimentation. It would be nice to keep the same nutritional value, but I'm more worried at this point about what will make the ingredients bind together, keep a good texture or taste, etc. Any suggestions as to additional ingredients that I could add, that are not substitutions are also welcome--just no dairy, as I'm lactose intolerant. Thanks in advance for your help!

3 1/2 cups oats

1/2 cup wheat germ

1/2 cup oat bran

1 tsp ground cinnamon

2 tsp salt

1 1/2 cup dried fruit (whatever I have on hand at the time--usually dates, raisins, and some exotic fruit)

1/3 cup sunflower seeds

1/3 cup pumpkin seeds

1/2 cup sesame seeds

1/2 cup coconut

1/3 cup nuts, chopped or slivered (whatever I have on hand at the time)

3 tsp milled flax seeds

1/2 cup carob powder

1 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter

3/4 cup honey

1/2 cup light corn syrup

1/4 cup melted butter

Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl, making sure to mix them well. Add peanut butter, honey, corn syrup, and melted butter. Mix well with your hands, making sure to get any dry ingredients that might fall to the bottom. Press firmly into greased 9x13 pan. Bake at 350F for 15-18 minutes.

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How about flax, crispy rice, or buckwheat (or some combination thereof)?

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rice bran ; chia seeds could be used as a sub.

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I would think you could do rice bran for oat bran. And maybe flax seeds for the wheat germ?

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I second the flax seed meal and chia meal as replacements for the oat bran and wheat germ. They're much better for you anyway. I see that flax meal is already an ingredient but in a fairly small amount that you could just cut that little bit out if you're already doing a half cup earlier in the recipe. You could also do almond flour in place of one of them if you'd like to add more protein in. If you aren't doing dairy, I suggest coconut oil in place of the butter, it will add a nice flavor and it's a fantastic oil/fat to add to your diet.

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