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Popped Amaranth Energy Bars

Popped Amaranth Energy Bars

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

Ingredients

  • 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

Instructions

  1. Spray an 8-inch square baking pan with nonstick cooking spray and line with parchment paper, allowing an overhang on opposite sides.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the popped amaranth, cranberries, and pistachios.
  3. 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.
  4. Scrape mixture into prepared pan. Very firmly tamp down mixture (using a second pan).
  5. Loosely cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours. Use the parchment overhang to remove bars from pan. Cut into 12 bars.

Notes

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.

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