TENDING the TABLE

Rice Crispy Bars

Finally! I think I made these bars like a million times this week. Okay, maybe it was more like five or six, but it felt like a million because I couldn’t eat any. Don’t worry though, I’ve stashed some away for later when I’ve recovered from cleanse week. So, remember when I took a poll on Instagram because I couldn’t decide which flavor rice crispy bar to share with you? Well, I finally decided…Below you will find, not one, not two, but three recipes. You’re welcome! Feel free to play around and make your own version of these bars as well. You can try different nut butters and/or throw in whatever seeds or dried fruit you like. These bars are killer and they’re gluten free, refined sugar free and vegan. Whoop whoop! Oh and did I mention that they come together in a pinch. Easy peasy. Enjoy!

RICE CRISPY BARS THREE WAYS

Chocolate Hazelnut Rice Crispy Bars

INGREDIENTS

1/4 cup hazelnut butter

1/2 cup coconut oil, at room temperature

3/4 cup brown rice syrup

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

1 1/2 cups hazelnuts

3 tablespoons cocoa nibs

4 cups crispy rice cereal (see note)

1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

PROCEDURE

Line an 8 inch square pan with parchment, allowing the parchment to hang over the edges of the pan by several inches.

In a medium sauce pan combine the hazelnut butter, coconut oil, brown rice syrup, vanilla and salt. Warm the mixture over medium low heat, whisking, until the mixture is uniform and smooth. Sift the cocoa powder into the pan and whisk again until smooth. Remove from the heat and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment and spread the hazelnuts evenly on the tray. Toast the hazelnuts for 10 minutes until the skins begin to darken and crack and the nuts are fragrant. Set aside until cool enough to handle. Rub a handful of the hazelnuts between your palms to remove the skins. Place the skinned, toasted nuts in a large bowl, discard the skins and repeat with the remaining nuts.  Add the rice, and cocoa nibs to the bowl with the hazelnuts. Add the “gooey stuff” to the bowl and gently stir with a rubber spatula until everything is coated and sticky. Add the chopped chocolate and stir again until evenly distributed.

Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan. Lightly oil your hands with a some coconut oil and press the mixture evenly into the pan. Fold the overhanging parchment on top of the bars and using the bottom of a measuring cup, pack the bars firmly and evenly into the pan. Allow to cool for at least 30 minutes. Remove the bars from the pan by lifting up on the pieces of overhanging parchment. Cut the bars into squares or rectangles. Serve alone or with almond milk.

These bars can be made ahead and stored in an airtight container for several days.

Almond Butter Rice Crispy Bars with Cherries and Chocolate

INGREDIENTS

1/2 cup creamy almond butter

1/2 cup coconut oil, at room temperature

1/2 cup brown rice syrup

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon salt

4 cups crispy rice cereal (see note)

1/2 cup dried unsweetened cherries, chopped

1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

PROCEURE

Line an 8 inch square pan with parchment, allowing the parchment to hang over the edges of the pan by several inches.

In a medium sauce pan combine the almond butter, coconut oil, brown rice syrup, vanilla and salt. Warm the mixture over medium low heat, whisking, until the mixture is uniform and smooth. Remove from the heat and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes.

Combine the rice and cherries in a large bowl. Add the “gooey stuff” to the bowl and gently stir with a rubber spatula until everything is coated and sticky. Add the chopped chocolate and stir again until evenly distributed.

Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan. Lightly oil your hands with a some coconut oil and press the mixture evenly into the pan. Fold the overhanging parchment on top of the bars and using the bottom of a measuring cup, pack the bars firmly and evenly into the pan. Allow to cool for at least 30 minutes. Remove the bars from the pan by lifting up on the pieces of overhanging parchment. Cut the bars into squares or rectangles.

These bars can be made ahead and stored in an airtight container for several days.

Toasted Sesame Rice Crispy Bars

INGREDIENTS

1/4 cup well stirred tahini

1/2 cup coconut oil, at room temperature

3/4 cup brown rice syrup

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon salt

4 cups crispy rice cereal (see note)

3 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds

1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

PROCEDURE

Line an 8 inch square pan with parchment, allowing the parchment to hang over the edges of the pan by several inches.

In a medium sauce pan combine the tahini, coconut oil, brown rice syrup, vanilla and salt. Warm the mixture over medium low heat, whisking, until the mixture is uniform and smooth. Remove from the heat and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes.

Combine the rice and sesame seeds in a large bowl. Add the “gooey stuff” to the bowl and gently stir with a rubber spatula until everything is coated and sticky. Add the chopped chocolate and stir again until evenly distributed.

Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan. Lightly oil your hands with a some coconut oil and press the mixture evenly into the pan. Fold the overhanging parchment on top of the bars and using the bottom of a measuring cup, pack the bars firmly and evenly into the pan. Allow to cool for at least 30 minutes. Remove the bars from the pan by lifting up on the pieces of overhanging parchment. Cut the bars into squares or rectangles.

These bars can be made ahead and stored in an airtight container for several days.

*I used Nature’s Path Crispy Rice Cereal because it held up better and resulted in a bar with more crunch. I also tested this recipe with puffed rice, but didn’t like how the rice softened and became overly chewy. If you can’t find Crispy Rice Cereal, puffed rice or Rice Krispies will do, just make sure you let the “gooey stuff” cool a little longer before mixing everything together.