Moving Out Granola Bars

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With days left before my move, my last few meals in North Carolina were the culmination of mixing a bit of this with a tad of that. I do not like to throw away food, so I made a bunch of “kitchen sink dishes.” These granola bars are one of those dishes. The measurements do not have to be exact–the recipe is the result of what I had lurking in my pantry. But I will say that when I make these granola bars again, I’ll either include more sweetener (i.e., honey, agave, maple syrup, etc.) or some dates because they were crumblier (is that a word???) than I wanted. Crunchiness aside, these granola bars were the perfect snack for my moving adventures….

And speaking of moving adventures: I am officially in DC! On Friday, I shipped most of my things to my new home in DC. (Side story… I saw the HUGEST praying mantis EVER at Fed Ex right as I was going to ship my things. Anyone who knows me knows that, of course, I immediately googled “praying mantis symbolism” on my iPhone. The result of my search–the praying mantis is a symbol of stillness, mindfulness, and divine energy. My interpretation was that I should be calm, optimistic, and assured as I enter this next phase of my lifeHere’s a pic of it!).

On Saturday, I drove up to DC, unpacked the car, received my 38 boxes (mostly books and kitchen items! 😀) from Fed Ex, picked up a number of Craigslist items, ate at Sticky Fingers (mmmmm), and discovered my new favorite neighborhood restaurant. Sunday, with boxes all around, I tackled the bathroom, went to the Farmer’s Market, and locked myself out of my building while taking out the trash–in my pajamas–in the sweltering DC heat (luckily a neighbor let me in before I passed out from heat stroke). Monday, I took on the kitchen, and yes, you guessed it prepared my first meal. Yesterday, I finished my bedroom (for now at least). And I’ve spent most of today on the phone dealing with all sorts of minutiae I wouldn’t dare bore you with. As I reenter my blogging life, I am super grateful that I do not actually start work until the end of the month. So much to do, so many dishes to prepare (I’ve missed cooking!), and so many blog posts to read (ah, I have close to 1,000 msgs. in my food buzz inbox!).

I’ve missed you foodie friends, but I’m happy to say, I’m baaaaaaaaaaack! 😀

Moving Out Granola Bars (Printable Recipe)

Ingredients:

3 cups old fashioned rolled oats

3/4 cup raw almonds

1/4 cup raw cashews

1 1/2 cups unsweetened flaked coconut, plus 1-2 tablespoons for sprinkling

1/3 cup white chocolate chips

1 1/2 teaspoons cardamom

1/4 cup honey

2 tablespoons agave

1 1/2 tablespoons maple syrup

1/3 cup brown sugar

4 tablespoons Earth Balance

1 teaspoon Tamari (or soy sauce)

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

1 teaspoon orange extract (divided)

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips–melted

Method:

*Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees F. Roughly chop almonds and cashews. Add nuts and oats to a large baking dish with oats. Toast in preheated oven for 10 minutes (stir twice). Add oats and nuts to a large bowl with cardamom, coconut, and white chocolate chips.

*Spray a 9″ x 13″ baking dish with cooking spray. Set aside.

*In a medium saucepan, mix honey, agave, maple syrup, brown sugar, Earth Balance, and Tamari over low heat until all ingredients are fully combined. Turn off heat. Stir in vanilla extract, almond extract, and 1/2 of orange extract. Pour the fragrant sugary mixture over the oats mixture. Mix thoroughly. Press into prepped pan. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until granola bars are golden brown. Let cool. Slice into bars of desired size.

*Melt semi-sweet chocolate with remaining orange extract in the microwave in 3o second increments. (Microwave for 30 seconds. Remove from microwave. Stir chocolate. Repeat until chocolate is completely smooth). Spread chocolate on 1/2 of the granola bars. Sprinkle with coconut. [One half of the bars will have melted chocolate and one half will not have melted chocolate]. Enjoy!

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Tiffany M. Griffin is the woman behind Como Water, Washington DC’s premiere veg-centric cuisine consulting company. Through cooking classes, demonstrations, catering, and consultations, Como Water gives people the opportunity to learn how to prepare veg-centric cuisine that boasts maximum flavor, with minimal effort. Tiffany is quickly becoming a go-to expert on the future of veg-centric cuisine, and is a regular contributor to Como Water, the blog, as well as to vegetarian and vegan sites across the Internet. For over a decade, this self-taught, entrepreneurial expert has developed a set of tried and true techniques for making simple, delicious, and sometimes decadent veg-centric dishes. Featured on the Steve Harvey Show and other leading media outlets, Tiffany was born and raised in Springfield, MA. She then earned Bachelors degrees in Psychology and Communications from Boston College and a PhD in Social Psychology from the University of Michigan. She now resides in Washington DC, where she has worked in the US Senate and at a federal agency on issues around health, food, nutrition, and international food aid/development, and of course, as the owner of Como Water. Tiffany gets culinary inspiration from the food she grew up eating, and from her travels throughout Latin America, the Caribbean, Western Europe, and Sub-Saharan Africa. She is dedicated to sharing her wealth of knowledge on veg-centric cuisine with others and to help others live by her mantra—love life, live long, and eat veg-centric cuisine!

Comments

  1. Granola bars looks super yummy. Glad your move went well. Sounds like your enjoying your new neighborhood. :)

  2. Glad you had a successful move! I know what you mean about trying to make kitchen sink dishes when you move, (it’s kinda like a fun version of Chopped!) this looks like a great one!

  3. Good Luck in DC! I really enjoy visiting and your granola bars look yummy!

  4. Lovely bars, certainly good for bringing the leftovers in one lump. Congratulations on the move. I’m glad you’re settling in well and have warmed your kitchen.

  5. Ohh I adore those little or big creatures..we have them so many over the summer! Great picture!
    And bars..those are looking fantastic and what a combination of ingredients..so good!
    Wishing you luck on your new journey!!!

  6. These sound so perfectly healthy! I love making granola bars at home and I love the spices that you added…cardamom? Yum!

  7. I am going to have to give this recipe on hand. I have been experimenting with granola for a couple of years trying to find the best recipe. This weekend I actually tested a granola recipe for Cook’s Illustrated for an issue coming this fall.

  8. Whoa, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a praying mantis up close and personal like that. I’d probably be a bit wigged out by it…definitely not the definition of calm and stillness! Kitchen sink dishes like these awesome granola bars can turn out surprisingly well. Yours look wonderful!

  9. Delicious! YAY! You’re in DC now! It is an amazing city – and I love the museums. We used to live about 90 minutes from the capital….years ago.

  10. First, these granol bars are a great way to use up extra ingredients! Second, that bug is super gross.

  11. Good off the cuff recipe. And now that you’ve planted yourself in D.C, it’s time to bloom. Start rattlin those pots girl!

  12. You courageous animal photographer, you! I’d have squealed and run to the next closest Fed Ex. There’s an episode of Buffy with a praying mantis that has scarred me for life.

    Wonderful granola though :) That will keep you pumped during your exciting move!

  13. Those look really good! You put soy sauce in granola bars? Strange. Also, I am so terrified of praying mantises. They are so scary.

  14. Yay neighbor! I’m glad you are here!!! Hopefully the move was relatively uneventful for you. It sounds like you are getting organized! When you are feeling settled and adjusted….I’d love to treat you to drinks/dinner. And when the weather begins to cool…maybe we can meet at Eastern Market? Anyway…let me know if you need anything at all! (And the granola bars look divine!) : )

  15. Washington DC….I am jealous!
    Praying Mantises are wonderful creatures and so funny to watch. They like to breed in our backyard and hang out on our pool fence. The other night we saw one eating another bug. Kinda of gross but so fascinating.

    Your granola bars look scrumptious.

  16. It looks delicious! praying mantises are very fascinating creatures for me..

  17. Your granola bars look yummy! Cardamom and soy sauce in it? It’s so you! Very unique and surprise ingredients! Glad to hear your move went well. We missed you very much!

  18. We missed you too Tiff! So glad you are back! And settling into your new “life”! DC sounds great… though I would have preferred for you to move down under!!! hehehe <3

    The Granola bars look delicious by the way, very creative ingredients… something else I have never made at home!

  19. Wow..congratulation on your moving Tiff.. and the granola bar seems can be very much yummy thing to celebrate it ^,^

  20. Hi! tifkey granola bars looks fantastic and it’s my son favorite. must try ur version but what is agave? because it’s new for me.

    • Agave is a natural sweetener from the agave plant (where tequila comes from :D)…

  21. Welcome back dear! What a fantastic bar and adding a tamari in granola bars is new to me….

  22. congrats on moving to dc!! yay for farmers markets :). i’ve gone to one there, not sure if its the one you went to (when i was visiting the area, i don’t live there though). i never thought about using tamari in a granola bar, but usually the sweet and salty combo works very well, so i’m sure it was packed with good flavor :)

  23. Fantastic! The addition on cardamom is pure genius!

  24. Hi there! Just found you through Terra from Cafe Terra. Hope you are enjoying getting settled in in DC. I’m from Charlotte but now live outside of Raleigh.

    Love your granola bars and the fact that you made them to minimize waste before moving. It’s always a challenge to use up the last bits and pieces before you pack up the pantry and turn off the fridge. :)

  25. Glad you are back and you brought something tasty with you-these look so delicious. The last hurrah from that pantry. Thanks for sharing!

  26. Congratulations on the move and an exciting new adventure! Sometimes I think the situations that put is the most calm, peaceful and open places are great shifts in our space and energy. Can’t wait to hear about exploring your new city and, of course, the food!

  27. We love granola bars in our house..the kids are HUGE fans (as am I ). Love the flaked coconut on top. Beautiful and delicious.

  28. Glad your move was successful! I love that you looked up the symbolism of the praying mantis- that sounds like something I would do!
    These granola bars look so good! I’m intrigued by your addition of tamari… Is that to give it a slightly salty taste?

    • Hi Nikita! Yup, I added the Tamari instead of salt… It was really subtle, but I liked it! 😀

  29. I can’t get enough of granola bars! Must look out for some tamari.

  30. nothing like moving in a heat wave! I’m glad the move went well…have fun exploring your new neighbourhood! Theresa

  31. delicious looking granola bars looks wonderful

  32. Wow, that praying mantis is huge! I’m so glad it’s a good omen, i would have done the same thing, which reminds me, I saw a black butterfly today must google that! I love the “cupboard emptying” granola bars and so pleased you are happy in your new home!

    • Oh my gosh! We have got to talk about black butterflies off the blog circuit. They are SUPER good luck… especially black and blue butterflies!

  33. Congrats on the move! I wish you all the best in your new adventures. Your granola bars look super duper tasty! :-)

  34. Good luck in your new adventure. I cannot wait to see what you create in your new kitchen!

  35. OMG!!! That praying mantis is HUGE!!!! …that’s actually a really nice shot you took there. Oh yeah, the granola bars: they look yummy!

  36. Congrats on a successful move and GOOD LUCK with those million of messages and the unpacking. Can’t wait to hear about your adventures in DC! :)

  37. Congrats on a successful move! I’ve only been to DC once, but it seemed like a wonderful place to live… well, as long as you can deal with muggy heat, that is. (And, apparently, with very large bugs. Yikes!) :)
    I’ve been meaning to make homemade granola bars for ages, but never seem to get around to it. Your chocolate-covered versions looks so yummy that it just might be the kick in the pants I need to finally do it!

    • Uh DC’s bugs are not half as large as the deep South.

  38. Charming mantis…I’ve seen only once in my life, in a pizzeria… she was beautiful!
    Congrats on your new life in DC!! Granola bars look delicious :)

  39. Congrats on the move!

  40. Congrats on the move and also on the top 9!
    these granola bars looks so healthy and would be great to have on long roadtrips. i would much rather munch on these than granola bars from the gas stations that are filled with all sorts of ingredients i don’t even know how to pronounce…lol.

  41. Congratulations on the move. I’m glad you had a neighbor kind enough to let you back in!

  42. Welcome back, and glad your move went well. It is one of the unbreakable rules of the universe that you only ever lock yourself out when you are in your PJs :)

    Perfect moving food, these granola bars. Perfect energy food that’s a treat at the same time.

  43. I am so happy you have made your move and it all went smoothly! Love the story of the mantiss. I believe in symbols too and I am glad that this one was a good one for you. : ) These granola bars look fantastic. My kids would gobble them up. : ) I hope you get all settled in and love your new life in DC!! Congrats on making TOP 9! : )

  44. Good luck in DC! these granola bars sound de-lish!

  45. Glad to see you’re back and that you’ve moved in safely! And holy moly that praying mantis is huge! I would be running away from that thing – well, because I’m a wuss. =)

    These granola bars sound so delicious – and interesting addition of the Tamari – might have to try that next time I make a batch =)

  46. Congrats on your move to DC! I miss that city so much….so beautiful. I love granola bars and am very intrigued with your use of soy sauce in yours! Very original. Can’t wait to try this.

  47. So much yummy in one little bar….plus it gives you energy to face the slew of things that come with moving. 😉

  48. These bars look fantastic. I really like the addition of tamari. Good luck on your move!

  49. Wow, those look great! Can’t wait to try!

  50. Welcome to the district! I’ve lived in the area all my life and still have yet to visit sticky fingers! Perhaps I’ll do it this weekend when I visit my brother in the city! And those granola bars….look divine!

  51. Congrats on top 9, hon!!! These look so good! LOVE the topping! :))

  52. The granola bars look great! I am glad you had a successful move and are getting settled in to your new neightborhood.

  53. Yay!!! So super excited for you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  54. Welcome back, Tiffany! It totally sounds like you were calm, cool, and collected throughout this moving process. I’m glad you’re pretty settled in now! These granola bars look outrageous and I can’t wait to make them. Oh, you’ll be happy to know I’ve got a great pate brisee recipe now to work with. Now I feel like making empamosas the proper way 😉 I’m excited to read about your new DC life!

  55. I can’t believe you are already set up and cooking after that move! Also- I can ‘t believe you hung around to take a picture of that giant praying mantis…I would have been half way down the block at that point!

    Your granola bars look fantastic and seem like the perfect pantry friendly snack!!

  56. Moving out to a new place always has such mixed feelings .. as much as I get excited about the new place .. the idea of packing and unpacking and leaving friends behind makes me cry!

  57. Congratulations on the move, the praying mantis good karma, on Top 9 and on the great restaurant find!! It sounds like everything is starting off great! I love the nuts and coconut in this granola bar.

  58. Wow, that was a super-giant praying mantis!

    Those moving out bars look great – :-)

  59. First, congratulations on getting in the Daily Buzz Top 9. I am so glad that I found your blog. These granola bars look great (and also excited to find another date fan, they are one of my faves) and I can’t wait to read more of your recipes.

  60. Bars look awesome! Congrats on making the Top 9! Not sure how I missed these the other day! So glad your move went well. I am sure that is nice to have done, and be able to enjoy your new place! Have fun exploring!

  61. Congrats on the Top 9 today, and moving at the same time! Love your granola bars, the perfect snack for moving! Enjoy your new home!

  62. YAY!!!! Welcome back, we missed you:-) I love kitchen sink granola bars, and look at you making foodbuzz top 9 for a welcome home present, WOO HOO!!! I do believe that crumbly is a word, LOL! Hugs, Terra

  63. Moving to a new city can be such an exciting adventure!! I’m so glad these changes are going so well, and that you got that omen at the FedEx office, haha. Good luck with the rest of your unpacking and starting your new job!

  64. I’m back again to say CONGRATS on top 9! 😉 Happy weekend!

  65. And you thought this was something you just through together at the last minute, Congratulations!!

  66. Those granola bars are so inventive and look delicious! I can’t see a preying mantis without thinking of space ghost coast to coast :)

  67. These granola bars look so delicious and the ingredients sound so good together.

  68. I love that you googled the Praying Mantis! When I was reading that you saw it I immediately thought, “I would have googled that to see if that held any symbolism” and then I read that you googled it for the same reason! LOL! Great minds think alike :) Great recipe and I’m happy to hear that your move is going so well. Well, other than being locked out in your PJ’s!

  69. Welcome to the neighborhood! These look great. (Now that you’re up here, you’re gonna have to try Michele’s Granola sometime … you will die, it’s SO good. And no, I am not paid to say that, lol)

    • Will do! Thanks for the tip! 😀

  70. Ohmygosh I need some of those granola bars! Mmmm the melted chocolate orange sauce on it sounds amazing right now!!

  71. Hai Dear

    This looks yummy….you have a lovely blog… You have so many wonderful recipes..I have bookmarked you blog and some recipe from that to try..Please check out my blog.I am having a Giveaway in my blog..Please check it out and partcipate in that..
    http://yummytummy-aarthi.blogspot.com/2011/07/homemade-bounty-chocolate-and-giveaway.html

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  72. Great recipe! The bars looks so beautiful with the chocolate and coconut on top! May you have “stillness, mindfulness, and divine energy” as you settle in to your new home.

  73. I have been meaning to find this recipe since it made the Top 9! Enjoy the new city! DC is great fun.

  74. Thank you everyone for the comments!