2.02.2012

Guest Post: Apricot Oat Bars

Hey guys! Today I have a guest post for you from Annie over at Naturally Sweet Recipes - she and her sisters have the most ADORABLE site! They only post recipes that are sugar free, so for those of you who want to watch your sugar, be sure to check their blog out! Now, without further ado... please welcome Annie!


Hello, Passing Daisies readers! I’m Annie from Naturally Sweet Recipes and I’m so happy to guest post for Rachael! She’s got an amazing blog and I’m thrilled to have the chance to be a part of it!

I share Naturally Sweet Recipes with my 2 lovely sisters, Holly and Chelsea.  We share a common love of good food, but more particularly delicious sweets and desserts! As we’ve experienced some health challenges and learned about healthy eating, we’ve adapted lifestyle habits for better health and well being. This has led us to cook with whole, natural ingredients and bake with natural sweeteners. Naturally Sweet Recipes was born out of a love of baking and cooking and a passion for natural clean eating.

Today, I wanted to share a recipe I made when I first started going sugar free and eating more natural foods. It’s a recipe that was inspired by the food network star Giada De Laurentiis.  Apricot bars are a delicious sweet treat that are loaded with nuts, grains and fruit. Using natural sweeteners, they become pretty healthy! Add a good measure of cinnamon and vanilla and these bars are scrumptious and a bit addicting too!

Apricot Oat Bars
(adapted from Giada De Laurentiis)


Filling:
1 1/4 cups (13-ounces) sugar free or naturally sweetened Apricot Jam
10 Dried Apricots, chopped coarsely
1 teaspoon Honey

Crust:
1 3/4 cups Spelt Flour
3/4 cup plus 1 teaspoon (divided) Coconut Sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons Cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon Sea or Pink Salt
3/4 teaspoon Baking Soda
1 3/4 cups plus 1 Tablespoon Oats
3/4 cup coarsely Chopped Walnuts
2/3 cup Honey
1 cup Coconut Oil or unsalted Butter, melted
1 beaten Large Egg, at room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoons Pure Vanilla Extract
Optional: 1 Tablespoon flax seed

1. Start by mixing your filling of the apricots, jam and honey in a small mixing bowl. Set aside.
2.For the crust, mix together your flour, 3/4 cup coconut sugar, cinnamon, salt, baking soda, oats and walnuts. Stir in your honey. 

3. Add the melted coconut oil or butter, beaten egg and vanilla and stir until well combined. 
4. Spray a 7 by 11 or a 9 by 13 baking dish. With clean fingers, press half of the crust mixture firmly in the bottom of your baking dish. Spread your apricot jam filling all over the crust.
5. Cover the apricot filling with the remaining crust mixture and press lightly to flatten and firm. Sprinkle on bars 1 teaspoon of coconut sugar. 
6. Bake at 350 for 28-30 minutes. Let cool for at least 30 minutes to 1 hour.




Thanks so much, Annie!

If anyone else is interested in writing a guest post for me, or would like me to write a guest post for them. please email me at rachael[at]passingdaisies[dot]net! I can't wait to hear from you all and I would love to feature as many of you as possible!

Much love, 

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