Energy bars can be sneaky: Many are loaded with so much fat and added sugar, you might as well have a candy bar instead. But luckily, making your own healthy grab-and-go snack doesn't have to be hard. We asked Michelle Rivera, a pastry chef at the El Conquistador Resort, a Waldorf Astoria Resort and Spa in Puerto Rico, to share her recipe for homemade energy bars. Rivera's secret ingredient: Figs. They're packed with fiber to fuel you through a workout (or a marathon of errands), and also provide a dose of sweetness. Each bar contains just 115 calories. Whip up a batch over the weekend and enjoy all week long.
Homemade Fig Energy Bars
2 cups almond meal
¼ cup almond butter
¼ cup almond milk
¼ cup maple syrup or blue agave
2 Tbsp. chia seeds
1 ¼ tsp. cinnamon
½ tsp. vanilla extract
¼ tsp. sea salt
1 ½ cup dried figs
1 ½ tsp. fresh lemon juice
1 ½ tsp. vanilla extract
- Place the figs in hot water and set aside until needed.
- For the dough, combine all ingredients in a food processor and run the machine until a sticky dough forms.
- Put the dough between two pieces of wax paper and roll out with a rolling pin until it's ¼-inch thick to form a square. Let this rest in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
- For the filling, drain the figs and place them in a food processor with the lemon juice and the vanilla extract. Process until the mixture is smooth.
- Spread the filling into an even layer covering half of the dough. Fold the other half of the dough over the filling and press the edges together. Refrigerate for 1 hour, then cut into 8 even logs, and then 16 bars.
PER SERVING: 115 calories