Peanut Butter Bars-Updated!

These Peanut Butter bars were one of the first recipes I ever put up on my blog! I remember I started making them because my boyfriend at the time wanted to GAIN weight and I thought, a-ha, I have just the thing!peanut butter bars

So consider that a warning…this recipe is great for someone trying to gain weight. It’s great even if you aren’t trying to gain weight but weight gain could be a side effect 😉

I eat some almost every day, ha! Seriously, I have been making these just about every week and I’ve tweaked the recipe so much from the original version that I need to re-post it. I lightened it up ever so slightly but I love the lighter texture and feeling these have.

This new version is also gluten free as they no longer use graham crackers.

Peanut Butter Bars (Updated Version)

Base Ingredients

  • 1 stick butter or vegan butter
  • 1 cup coconut sugar
  • 1 cup of crumbs made from ground crisped rice cereal
  • 1 1/2 cups smooth peanut butter

Topping Ingredients

  • 1 10.5oz bag chocolate chips (I use enjoy life mini chips as they melt perfectly)
  • 1 teaspoon butter, coconut oil or vegan butter
  • 1/4 cup almond milk or milk of choice

Directions

Line a 9×9 pan with parchment paper and set aside. Next, make some crumbs out of crisped rice cereal. My favorite method is to use the food processor because it is so fast but you could also place the cereal in a ziploc bag and crush the cereal with a rolling pin until you get a fine crumb. You need 1 cup of CRUMB which is probably a couple-few cups of cereal.

In a medium or large pot melt the butter on low heat. Once the butter is melted add in the coconut sugar and cereal crumbs. Stir to combine. Last, add in the peanut butter and stir until smooth. Remove from the heat and pour into the prepared 9×9 pan. Place in the freezer for 20-30 minutes or until firm. You don’t want the chocolate layer to bleed into the peanut butter layer so this step is important.

For the chocolate layer, heat some water in a small saucepan. Place a medium size glass bowl on top of the saucepan to create a double boiler. You could also use a double boiler pot if you have one. Add the oil and milk to the glass bowl and once the oil has melted that is your cue to add the chocolate chips. Stir constantly to avoid burning the chocolate. Once a smooth sauce has formed pour the chocolate layer on to the peanut butter later and smooth with a knife. Place back in the freezer or refrigerator until the chocolate layer has firmed up.

These can easily be removed from the pan by pulling on the corners of the parchment paper to lift the whole dessert out of the pan. Place on a cutting board and cut into squares. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

For cute pictures of Mr. Rocco follow him on Instagram @Rocco_the_minpin (His name is Rocco James).

OH my gosh, speaking of Rocco. A couple weeks ago he ate a good 2 oz of DARK chocolate that I accidentally left out! He has never shown any interest in chocolate so admittedly I am not good about keeping it away from him. Anyway, I came home one day and found an empty chocolate bar wrapper and I knew it had been almost a full bar. He only weighs 15-16 pounds and 2 oz would be a lethal dose to a little guy like him. He wasn’t exhibiting any symptoms of chocolate poisoning but according to my online research that is the best time to induce vomiting. So, I administered 1.5 teaspoons of hydrogen peroxide to him via bone broth (he loved it) and waited. I probably could have/should have given him more hydrogen peroxide because it took him a full hour to start vomiting. But when he did…it was a big frothy pile of chocolate syrup! It looked like a giant s’more minus the graham cracker. And then again…and again. But the good news is that he was totally fine and never got sick from the chocolate. Only sick from me making him throw up. So all is well. Needless to say I am keeping my chocolate FAR away from him now!

That’s all I have. Bye for now!

Laura

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4 Ingredient Oatmeal Choc Chip Cookies (Vegan + GF) Plus UPDATES!!

I am going to start blogging more regularly! It’s just that people say “blogging is dead” and then I also feel like I have so many updates that I don’t know where to start.

So, I’ll start with these cookies. These are super simple and impossible to mess up. I make a no bake version of these all the time but this winter I was craving a warm cookie so I decided to bake them and they turned out awesome. I usually don’t measure anything, I just estimate but they always turn out. The recipe is below and I will just leave it by saying these are good for breakfast, snack or dessert.

Ok, then on to my healing updates! I am just about 5 months post-op now!! I can’t believe that much time has already passed but I’m stoked! I have my eye on that 6 month mark because that’s when the surgeon said I can consider running.

The #1 question I get from people (almost daily) is: So are you back to running? And the answer is a big N.O.! Like, not even close, haha! Only this week going up and down stairs has started to feel a littler easier. Anything very jumpy is still out of the question, so jumping jacks and anything of that nature still isn’t happening.

To be honest, running has “lost it’s sparkle” a bit (a lot). That’s the expression my dentist used and I loved it! I was like, YES, it has lost it’s sparkle! I think when an activity can take you down like this for so many months and in such a major way it makes you re-evaluate what is really important. And, I love running, but I love not being injured more. So, I hope that in another month I will be able to start doing some easy running and maybe do some 5K’s over the summer. But, as an active person with many hobbies, I kind of quickly moved on to something else. I changed gears. Re-prioritized. And now running long distance has about zero appeal. I am already looking forward to mountain biking and hiking more this summer and less running is life kind of thing.

Instead I have been doing a TON of yoga & walking. It’s funny, but I started doing yoga in about 2000 I think. My grandma gave me a yoga mat (her old one, LOL! She is 92 now.) and I bought a few VHS videos and would practice in my living room. So how crazy is that, I have been a yogi for almost 20 years! It’s cool that it’s the thing I always come back to over and over and it has always been there for me. I have a pretty regular home practice and then I go to a studio a couple times a week and teach a couple times a week as well. It’s been really nice to practice yoga without being sore and stiff from running and I’ve actually gotten so much more flexible. So yay. The other thing I do is a good 45 minute walk just about every day. It sounds lame I know and I can’t walk very fast still. I walk at around a 2.7 for speed. Last week I tried going up to 3.3 and I was in so much pain that night so that was a bad idea.

Healing wise, it turns out breaking a hip is a pretty painful injury. Not everyone is bothered by their hardware but I sure am. I can’t lay on my side at all and sitting is also painful because it feels like my muscles smoosh into the screw heads. So, if they still bother me in a year I can get them removed but I really don’t want to do that! But yeah, almost everything still hurts a little and sleeping is probably the worst. I think in time all will feel better.

screws

This picture is kind of hard to see but there are 3 screws in there and they have washers at the end to hold them in place. So they go in on the side of my thigh and go all the way to the end of the femur head so I think they are approximately 8 inches long. So I guess that explains why I can feel them, ha. They are stainless steel and I did not set the metal detector alarms off at the airport so I was kind of disappointed by that. But I was in the TSA pre check lane so maybe when I’m in the regular line it will be different.

Alright, on to the cookies now!

oatmeal choc chip cookies

4 Ingredient Oatmeal Choc Chip Cookies (vegan & GF)

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 cups old fashioned oats (use GF if you need these certified gluten free)
  • 1/3 cup nut butter (I use almond or peanut)
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 6 Tablespoons nut milk (I use almond milk)
  • 1/3 cup mini chips (I use enjoy life)

Ok, so there are more than 4 ingredients but there are only 4 MAIN ingredients. The other 3 you could technically do without. Place all ingredients except chocolate chips in a food processor and process for a few seconds until you get a cookie batter consistency. If it’s too dry add more milk. The oats will soak up the milk so if it seems runny wait a few minutes before adding more oats. But if it is too runny add more oats. Or peanut butter. Or both!

Transfer the batter to a bowl and stir in the chocolate chips. Spoon heaps of dough onto a parchment lined cookie sheet. I love my dough scoop!

Bake in the oven at 350°F for 15 minutes.

Makes 1 dozen so I recommend doubling this 😉

 

Bye for now!

Laura