Over the course of the past couple of months, our family has taken our preparedness efforts on the trail. We have been hiking with loaded packs to determine what works and what doesn't. We have learned what gear we like, what attachments are an asset and what items are essential to our kit. It has been nothing short of a learning experience.
One thing we have found is that we need energy on the trail (especially the children), and, not wanting to spend the money on high priced energy bars, I decided to make my own. We have affectionately named our bars LRRP (pronounced "lurp") Bars, short for Long Range Reconnaissance Patrol Bars, because they are packed with nuts, fruits, complex sugars and carbohydrates making them perfect for nutrition on the go. They are made from items most often found in a typical pantry and every ingredient is easily stored. This recipe can be changed according to individual likes and dislikes and requires very little time to make. I will give the original recipe along with the substitutions I made.
1 C rolled oats (I use thick oats - I also love to toast the oats before using - 10-15 minutes at 350° until slightly browned)
1/2 C whole wheat flour
1/2 C wheat and barely nugget cereal (GrapeNuts) (I left this out)
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 beaten egg
1/4 C applesauce
1/4 C honey
3 T brown sugar
2 T vegetable oil
1/4 C unsalted sunflower seeds (I used salted)
1/4 C chopped walnuts (I used pecans)
1 (7 ounce) bag chopped, dried mixed fruit (I used Craisins but would love raisins, dates, dehydrated apples, raspberries, etc.)
I added 1 C chocolate chips (although it is not in the recipe)
- Preheat oven to 325°. Line a 9" square baking pan with aluminum foil. Spray the foil with cooking spray. (I doubled the recipe and used a 15" x 10.5" pan).
- In a large bowl, stir together the oats, flour, cereal and cinnamon. Add the egg, applesauce, honey, brown sugar and oil. Mix well. Stir in the sunflower seeds, walnuts and dried fruit. Spread mixture evenly in the prepared pan.
- Bake 30 minutes, or until firm and lightly browned around the edges. Let cool. Use the foil to lift from the pan. Cut into bars or squares and store in the refrigerator (or bake slightly longer, until the bars are a little dryer, and store at room temperature).
*Substitutions I would use: I think adding Whey protein or powdered milk would be great for upping the protein. I would use 10 grain cereal instead of the GrapeNuts. I think I could come up with all kinds of fun things to add!
|With Whole Wheat flour|
|Adding the applesauce and eggs|
|And the honey (somewhat crystallized, but raw)|
|Pecans, Sunflower Seeds, Craisins|
|Mixing it all together|
|Lining the pan with tin foil and oiling it|
|Spread in the pan|
|Baked, out of the pan and ready to cut|
|Yum! Soft and Chewy|
These are power-packed and full of goodness! Children and adults alike think they're a keeper. These will make your next Long Range Reconnaissance Patrol a little easier to take!