Cereal bars are naturally sweet and moist, and they make a great addition to packed lunch. They are also a good means of getting the family to try more unusual seeds and grains, and also add new healthy ingredients to the diet that can supplement you with vitamins A, B1, B6, and E, and copper, zinc.
Ready in: 55min (Prep: 25min, Cook: 30min)
- Sunflower seeds – 2 tablespoon
- Pumpkin seeds – 2 tablespoon
- Linseeds – 2 tablespoon
- 2 bananas – About 300 g (10½ oz) in total (weighed with their skins on)
- Unsalted butter – 100 g (3½ oz)
- Honey or maple syrup (or golden syrup) – 3 tablespoon
- Millet flakes – 50 g (1¾ oz)
- Rolled oats – 100 g (3½ oz)
- Stoned dried dates (Roughly chopped) – 100 g (3½ oz)
- Preheat the oven to 180ºC (Gas mark 4). Grease a cake tin (28 × 18 × 4 cm) and line the bottom with baking parchment.
- Roughly chop the pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds and linseeds.
- Peel the bananas and roughly mash them.
- In a saucepan, melt the butter, and then stir in the golden syrup.
- Add the mashed bananas and chopped seeds, together with the dates, rolled oats and millet flakes. Mix them thoroughly.
- Then spoon the mixture into the greased cake tin and level the surface.
- Bake in the preheated oven for about 30 minutes or until golden brown.
- Allow it for 5 minutes to cool in the cake tin, then mark it into 14 bars and allow it to cool completely. You can keep the bars in an airtight tin for up to 2 days.
TIP: you can keep the cereal bars for 2 months by freezing them. Wrap them individually in freezer wrap or foil, because if you simply pack the frozen bars into a plastic container along with wrapped sandwiches, it will have melted by lunchtime.
NOTE: The naturally occurring fruit sugars in bananas and dates are released more slowly into the blood stream by the body. This gives a more sustained energy boost. But the added sugars (such as honey, table sugar and golden syrup), on the other hand, are absorbed quickly and burnt up by the body faster.
Seeds are rich sources of protein and they are particularly valuable for those following a vegetarian diet.
Linseeds are good sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which is essential for eye and brain development in the foetus.