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Quinoa, Oat and Cherry Bars

For the last 6 months I’ve been making a batch of these bars every week. They are good for breakfast, make excellent snacks, and can even be a dessert.  I’ve used them to fuel up before, during and after a race / ride. These bars are very versatile and are easy to make wheat-free and/or dairy-free.

INGREDIENTS: 1 1/2 cups of Quinoa 1 can of coconut milk 2 1/2 cup of Oats (Trader Joes and Bob’s Red Mill have gluten free oats) 1 1/2 cup of yogurt, kefir or almond milk 1-1 1/2 cup of unsweetened coconut flakes (Bob’s Red Mill) 1-1 1/2 cup of dried cherries (Trader Joes Bing cherries) 1 tbsp cinnamon 1/2 cup of sweetener (agave, honey or maple syrup) 2 tsp baking soda 1/2 tsp salt 1 tbsp vanilla 1/2 – 1 cup peanut butter Apple sauce or almond meal to change consistency

Additional options: Chopped nuts Nutmeg

DIRECTIONS: 1. In a large bowl, soak the oats in the yogurt, Kefir and / or almond milk. The longer you can soak the better. I typically soak for 3 hours, stirring occasionally. If the oats absorb all the liquid, add a bit more.

2. Bring the coconut milk and 1 cup of water to a boil. Add the quinoa and simmer until the quinoa is cooked. This should be in about 10 minutes or when the liquid is absorbed.

3. Once the oats have been soaked and the quinoa is cooked, set the oven for 350 degrees.  Combine the oats and quinoa, and mix in the rest of the ingredients. If the mixture is too dry, add some almond milk, yogurt or apple sauce. If it is too wet, then add some almond meal. You want the consistency to be like a thick oatmeal. Pour the mixture into a large greased casserole dish (13 x 9) and bake for 35-45 minutes.

4. Cool in the casserole dish first before slicing into bars. Store in the refrigerator or freeze.

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