I’m so grateful for the abundance of information out there in the wide webby world. My baptism into a gluten-free/dairy-free kitchen has been pretty smooth, so far. Mostly because of the amazing bloggers who so generously share their talents and tricks for creating yummy treats without the not-so-yummy irritants.
Snacks for the Littles have been the most challenging part of the new regime. Cranky, after-school Littles need snacks. And I need something to fill the Clif Kid ZBar and Annie’s Cheddar Bunnies void that so often filled their tummies on the way home from school.
This weekend I did a little spring cleaning and gave away all my baking and cooking supplies that contained wheat, gluten, and dairy. The cupboard was bare, but quickly filled up with some suspicious looking characters.
Toto, something tells me we’re not in Kansas anymore!
Seriously?!? I have sorghum flour and xanthan gum in my pantry. (P.S. Spell check doesn’t even recognize the word xanthan). With the goal of creating yummy, healthy snacks, the Littles and I have been on a baking experimentation frenzy. I bake. They taste. So far? We have three delicious winners — all scoring four thumbs up!
Hands down, Quinoa Snack Bars are our new favorite on-the-go snack. I found the recipe at The Gluten-Free Goddess. Heaven help us if the rest of her recipes are as divine as this one. She is already a goddess in my book. My version is not egg-free, but check out her original masterpiece if you and eggs are not currently seeing each other. I made a couple tweaks, but really these bars leave little room for improvement. Even if you aren’t intolerant, allergic, or sensitive (really what is the pc term?) to gluten or dairy, you must try these bars. They are loaded with goodness from the quinoa flakes and flaxseed. And if my picky Littles love them, chances are yours will too.
I cut the bars into small 2-inch squares, individually wrap them, and keep them in the snack drawer of the fridge. They freeze really well, too, and only take about 20 minutes to defrost at room temperature. These bars are perfect to toss into backpacks, lunch boxes, and gym bags. For the record, we are on our third batch of Quinoa Snack Bars in one week. And to think, only one short month ago, I would have let spell check auto correct xanthan to Xanadu.
Quinoa Snack Bars
1 cup sorghum flour
1/2 cup organic quinoa flour
1/2 cup potato starch
1 cup quinoa flakes
2 Tbs flaxseed
1 tsp xanthan gum
3/4 tsp sea salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1 2/3 cups organic light brown sugar
2 large eggs
2/3 cup oil (I used canola)
3 Tbs organic maple syrup
1 Tbs vanilla
2 – 4 Tbs of water or almond milk (as needed for proper dough consistency)
1/2 cup raisins
2/3 cup Enjoy Life chocolate chips
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 11 x 9 – inch baking pan with lightly greased parchment paper.
Whisk together all the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. In a smaller bowl, beat the eggs and add oil, maple syrup, and vanilla. Combine wet ingredients into dry and mix well. If dough seems too dry add water (or almond milk) one tablespoon at a time, until it is a thick and sticky consistency.
Fold in raisins and chocolate chips.
Press dough into lined baking pan with your fingers to form a smooth surface. Bake for 22 minutes until firm and golden brown. Cool on wire rack and slice into 2 -inch squares. Make approximately 40 (2-in) bars.