Monday, March 19, 2012

Secret Recipe Club: Aspen Power Bars

It's time for another Secret Recipe Club post.  If you are not familiar with The Secret Recipe club, be sure to check them out here.  Basically, each month I am assigned a blog, where I get to choose a recipe from that blog to cook and blog about it on my blog.  And, someone else is assigned my blog to do the same.  It's really fun, and I find tons of awesome food blogs.  This month I was assigned Allies Clean Plate Club.

 Allison is a fellow Midwest girl, originally from Illinois and now in the craziness of theWest Coast (her words).  Although I'm not from Illinois, I'm just a few hours away in Michigan.

Well, it was really hard to choose a recipe!  She has so many recipes that I'd love to try.  But, I finally decided on the Aspen Power Bars.  She had mentioned that the inspiration for these was a request from her cross training husband.  That really drew me in because my husband is always training for something.  So, I knew he would love these.  Plus we are just granola eating people, I always make my own, so a granola bar was the perfect choice.  I made a couple changes and they are noted in the ingredients.  Plus I added a couple Tbs of flaxseed meal, simply because it's good for you.

1 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons rolled oats
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons brown sugar
Heaping 1/2 cup coconut flakes
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup nuts or sunflower seeds (I used 1/2 cup seeds and 1/4 cup chopped walnuts)
3/4 cup powdered milk
1/2 cup  raisins  (I used dried blueberries)
1/2 cup dried cranberries
3 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup honey
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon peanut butter--chunky is best (I didn't have chunky, so I went with creamy)
1 1/8 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon raspberry jam

Preheat the oven to 400.  Grease a 9x13 inch baking pan.  

In a large bowl, mix together the oats, brown sugar, coconut, salt, nuts, seed, powdered milk, raisins and cranberries.

In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat.  Stir in the honey, peanut butter, vanilla extract and jam until melted and fully incorporated.  Remove from heat.

Pour the melted ingredients over the dry ingredients and stir until fully mixed (I found the easiest way was with my hands). Press the mixture into the pan, compressing it as much as possible.  Bake until golden, about 12-19 minutes.

Remove from heat and cool completely on a wire rack.  Once cooled, run a knife along the edges to loosen from the sides.  Then invert the pan onto a large planner or cookie sheet.  Cut into bars with a large knife. 



  1. These look delicious. I am looking forward to making these. The ingredients sound great!

  2. These look wonderful! I love how you packaged them!

  3. This would be a yummy snack after a hike or something. I am so glad you shared this recipe with us.

  4. I love bars and these look really, really good! I love how you added the dried blueberries!

  5. I love making my own granola bars. True personalisation. These look amazing :)

  6. I have a nut allergy so I can never eat any of the store-bought varieties. Any ideas on what I could replace the peanut butter with in your version? I know I can leave out the nuts but that part stumps me!

    1. hmmm... what about Tahini? That's sesame seed paste, which I believe is a seed, not a nut, right? If I think of anything else I'll let you know.

  7. I am always looking for a homemade option for granola bars (or Luna bars--which I am addicted to). I have had some success with breakfast cookies. I am going to try these. And, great presentation!

  8. Great looking bars and I love the way you wrapped them! So hard to get a real good store bought bar these days,
    Great SRC post!

  9. Wonderful presentation and great looking bars - I am running out of the homemade version soon, so I think I will give these a try!

  10. Swapping out the blueberries for raisins instantly made me like these (not a raisin fan). Wow, these would be handy to have available!

  11. These look so good! I will have to try them. My husband likes to take a protein bar to work every day. Oh, I'm from MI too!

  12. I made a "energy" bar tonight! Had I read this post prior to sitting down, these would have been made. Dried blueberries are addictive and they're perfect!

    Stunning pictures. Great choice! Go group C!

    (Chris -

  13. I re-did this recipe too for SRC (back in October)!!! So yummy!! Though mine were a little different...
    Here's the link if you want to check them out:
    Love your site and glad to be a part of SRC with you!!

    - Brittany @ WeHeartVegan

  14. I could use one of these about 11 every morning. They look excellent. Great SRC pick.

  15. Stumbled onto your blog via the blog hop and just wanted to show you some blog luv! def enjoyed this post :) new follower!

  16. I love making granola bars for my daughter and these look wonderful, saving the recipe.

    If you haven't already, I'd love for you to check out my Group 'A' SRC entry: Broiled Sushi.

    Cook Lisa Cook