Popped Amaranth Energy Bars are a delicious, easy to make option for individuals and families on the go. You can whip these up in 20-30 minutes and have a week’s supply at your fingertips.
Serves: 12 bars
- 2 cups popped amaranth (about ½ cup unpopped–see below)
- ¼ cup (packed) dried cranberries, chopped
- ¼ cup shelled pistachios (roasted or raw), chopped
- ½ cup almond butter
- ½ cup brown rice syrup
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- Optional: a few drops vanilla or almond extract, ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon, ginger or allspice
- Spray an 8-inch square baking pan with nonstick cooking spray and line with parchment paper, allowing an overhang on opposite sides.
- In a large bowl, combine the popped amaranth, cranberries, and pistachios.
- In a small saucepan, combine the almond butter, brown rice syrup, and salt. Cook and stir over medium-low heat until bubbly. Remove from heat and stir in optional flavorings, if desired, then immediately pour over amaranth mixture, stirring to coat.
- Scrape mixture into prepared pan. Very firmly tamp down mixture (using a second pan).
- Loosely cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours. Use the parchment overhang to remove bars from pan. Cut into 12 bars.
How to pop amaranth: Heat a deep, dry saucepan over high heat until very hot (a drop of water added to pan should bounce across the surface). Add 1 tablespoon of amaranth. Vigorously shake or stir pan until the seeds pop, about 10-12 seconds (watch closely, the seeds can burn in an instant). Immediately transfer popped amaranth to a large bowl. Repeat. You can make a large amount of popped amaranth and store in an airtight container for up to 1 month. Bar Storage: Store the bars in an airtight container for 2 weeks at room temperature, 1 month in the refrigerator or 6 months in the freezer.