Many people have asked me if I miss eating snack foods like chips, crackers, and granola bars, which are only available in packaging. To my surprise, after nearly a year of working on this project, I can honestly answer that I do not crave any packaged food—savory, salty, or sweet. I’ve managed to find healthy, package-free replacements to satisfy every kind of hankering. When I look at the dried bulk and produce section of the grocery store, I see ingredients for small snacks or large meals.
After consuming nearly all of the energy cubes/chunks I purchased at the co-op last week, I decided to try making my own. I looked at a few recipes online and then just improvised. I ended up with a vegetarian, dairy-free, gluten-free, nearly raw (except for the almond butter and the popped amaranth), delicious snack.
My “recipe” is below. The measurements are approximate. I used what I had on hand—any other nuts, seeds, fruits and grains can be substituted.
1 cup honey
1 cup nut butter (I used almond)
1 cup popped amaranth
½ cup chopped almonds
½ cup chopped dried apricots
½ cup sunflower seeds
½ cup pumpkin seeds
Heat honey until warm. Slowly add nut butter until just mixable.
Add and mix in the remaining ingredients one by one. When the mixture became too stiff to stir, I used my hands to fold in the rest of the dry ingredients.
Press the mixture into an oiled 8”x8” pan. Cool for one hour. Cut into 1 inch cubes. Store in the refrigerator for up to one month. Freeze indefinitely.
Popped amaranth is really easy to make.
Place a skillet or a saucepan on the stove over high heat. Let it become hot enough that a drop of water disappears when you drop it on the surface.
Put a spoonful of dry amaranth seeds into the skillet (only pop a small amount at a time, otherwise the amaranth will burn).
Shake the skillet or stir the seeds continuously until all the amaranth has popped (about 15-20 seconds).
Pour the popped amaranth into a bowl and add more spoonfuls to your skillet until you have the desired amount.
Pressed in the pan…
They are sticky and delicious. I’m storing them in 16oz glass jars in the refrigerator. They’re a great snack before or after a run, or even as dessert.
Okay, last one… look at all that good stuff!