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These raw snack bars are great to have in the fridge or freezer as they have a long shelf life. They’re full of protein and natural ingredients, which makes them handy for new mums and dads who need an energy boost – as part of a balanced diet, of course. They’re also a good alternative to pre-packaged snacks when you get those occasional sweet-tooth cravings.

Ingredients

For the bars

  • 140g cashew nuts
  • 120g dried blueberries
  • 300g pitted medjool dates
  • 20g coconut oil (plus extra for greasing the tin)
  • 100g unsweetened desiccated coconut
  • 2 heaped tbsp of almond butter
  • 2tsp of vanilla bean paste or extract
  • Zest of 2 lemons

For the coating

  • 150g dark chocolate
  • 50g unsweetened desiccated coconut

Method

  1. Prepare a 500g loaf tin by rubbing the sides and base with coconut oil
  2. Cut two strips of parchment and lay them in the tin overlapping the sides. This will help you lift the set mixture out later.
  3. Put the cashew nuts in the blender and blend until completely smooth. This will take 4-5 minutes. Stop halfway through to scrape the sides of the bowl.
  4. Add the pitted medjool dates, dried blueberries, coconut oil, almond butter, lemon zest, vanilla bean paste and desiccated coconut, then blend for a further 3-4 minutes. The mixture should be well-combined, smooth and paste-like.
  5. Squash the mixture into your prepared loaf tin. Press it down firmly using the back of a spoon or your fingers. Wet your hands a little to prevent the mixture from sticking.
  6. Clingfilm the top, then freeze for 2 hours to set.
  7. Once set, turn out the set slab. If it’s sticking, run the sides of the tin under hot water for a few minutes. The heat will melt the coconut oil and help it slip out.
  8. Cut the slab into 16 bars, roughly 1cm thick.

For the optional coating

    1. Break the chocolate into small pieces and melt for 30 seconds in the microwave, or on the stove in a bowl over a pan of boiling water.
    2. Dip one end of each bar into the melted chocolate, then sprinkle with desiccated coconut. Place on a plate or tray lined with greaseproof paper.
    3. Leave to set in the fridge for 20 minutes.
    4. Wrap the bars individually or store in an airtight container. They will keep for one week in the fridge or alternatively freeze them for up to 1 month and defrost when needed.

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