Gluten-Free Nordic Energy Bars Recipe

These energy bars are packed with nutrients that power peak performance - and taste great too!

We challenged Nordic skiers from our local high school and college to create a nutritious energy bar that could be made at home. The focus was on organic, local ingredients with minimal packaging waste. This recipe is gluten-free, for those avoiding wheat. Bars were judged by students for taste and temperature tolerance (they have to be edible when frozen!) and by adults for nutritive value and sustainable ingredients.

Nordic skiers - and all athletes - need a wholesome source of high energy with easily digestible nutrients. Energy requirements for cross-country skiers, cyclists and runners are considerable, and optimal nutrition is essential for peak performance. These bars are not only delicious, but also provide a great array of easy-to-digest nutrients. They are great for athletes or to take on a hike - or anywhere.

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Yield: Makes about 48 (1.3 oz / 37 grams each)
Timing: Start this recipe about 4-5 hours before serving. The active preparation time is about 20 minutes.

Equipment: Brød & Taylor Folding Proofer, blender (or food processor), 15” x 11″ rectangular baking pan (about 38 cm x 28 cm). A flax, spice or coffee mill for grinding the flax seeds or you can purchase ground flax seeds.

Ingredients

VolumeGramsOunces
Butter¼ C572
Brown sugar⅓ C451.6
Honey½ C1876.6
Maple syrup½ C1706
Peanut butter, creamy½ C1475.2
Almond butter, creamy½ C1475.2
Rolled oats1 C853
Quick oats3 C2559
Sunflower seeds¾ C853
Flax seed, ground½ C572
Oat bran½ C431.5
Salt½ tsp30.1
Chia seeds2 T341.2
Almonds, whole1 C1565.5
Cranberries, dried½ C712.5
Medjool dates, pitted81304.6
Apricots, dried whole8602.1
Vanilla1 Tbs140.5

Prepare liquid ingredients. Place butter in the center of a three quart bowl with brown sugar on top. Set bowl in the Proofer with temperature at 120 °F / 49 °C for 1 hour, allowing butter to melt. Whisk again and return to the Proofer for 1 more hour or longer. There is no urgency in timing while using the gentle warmth of the Proofer. Add honey, maple syrup, peanut butter, and almond butter and whisk again. Return to the Proofer for another hour to soften.

Prepare dry ingredients and fruit. In a large 5 quart / 5 L bowl combine rolled oats, quick oats, sunflower seeds, ground flax seed, oat bran, salt and chia seeds.

Place almonds in the bottom of a blender (or food processor) and dried fruit on top. Pulse until finely chopped. Add to dry ingredients and mix thoroughly.

Combine dry and liquid ingredients. Remove bowl of liquid ingredients from Proofer and stir in vanilla. Pour liquid mixture immediately over dry ingredients in the large bowl and mix well. Mixture should hold together similar to cookie dough.

Form the bars. Lightly butter the baking pan. Spread mixture evenly in the pan and loosely cover with plastic wrap. Use your hands to press down on the plastic wrap and form a level, firmly packed surface. Refrigerate to cool completely and cut into bars. They may be individually wrapped, stored in the freezer, and can be eaten frozen or at room temperature.

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