After patiently waiting, I’ve finally started the countdown to my next overseas adventure with my boyfriend/favorite travel partner. In a few weeks, we’ll be flying into Lisbon and spending nine days exploring the coast of Portugal!
Traveling is something that used to be extremely anxiety-provoking for me because of the anticipation of eating out for almost every meal. Even though learning about different cultures and communities through travel is something that I’ve always been fascinated with, really enjoying local cuisine was something I’ve regrettably often missed out on. Over time, I’ve realized that by depriving myself of that part of my experience, I was also missing the whole point of exploring somewhere new.
The rituals around food and the dining are such an essential component to everyday life in all cultures and, to me, it’s important to be fully immersed while you’re there. But what really helped me find a healthy balance while traveling was enjoying meals to the fullest while keeping some healthy habits in mind.
Be mindful, present, and taste all the local food, but sneak in healthier meals when it makes sense. Instead of a fast food meal at the airport or on the plane, I love bringing my own healthy snacks. Airport food is notoriously expensive, so this is a huge money saver, plus it gives me the long lasting energy that I need to be on my feet all day.
These peanut butter and chocolate granola bars are perfect to throw into a carry-on and snack on while you’re on the go, because they’re full of delicious nutrient dense sources of carbs and protein. They’re perfectly chewy, glazed in a sweet and salty coating of peanut butter, studded with roasted peanuts, and dipped in a decedent layer of dark chocolate. Who could say no?
You’ll start by melting the coconut sugar and brown rice syrup together in a saucepan. This liquid will serve as the binder for the rest of the ingredients. After all the sugar has melted, add all of the additional ingredients except for the dark chocolate and stir until everything is thoroughly combined. At this point, pour the mixture onto a cookie sheet and press it down evenly with a rubber spatula before slicing it into evenly sized bars.
Now for the best part: the dark chocolate. I found that melting the whole chocolate bar on a large plate was easier for dipping the bottom of each granola bar than trying to use a bowl and a spoon. For a little extra sweetness, you can add a drizzle of chocolate on top of your bars!
Dark Chocolate and Peanut Butter Granola Bars
Takes , Serves 6.
- 1 Cup Puffed Rice (30g)
- 1 Cup Quick Oats (80g)
- ½ Cup Crushed Unsalted Peanuts (60g)
- 4 TBSP Powdered Peanut Butter (26g)
- ¼ tsp Sea Salt
- 6 TBSP Brown Rice Syrup (130g)
- 6 TBSP Coconut Sugar
- 1 Bar of Dark Chocolate (100g)
- Line a 10x15 inch baking tray with parchment paper.
- In a saucepan over medium heat, melt together brown rice syrup and coconut sugar until sugar is completely dissolved.
- After sugar is dissolved, add puffed rice, oats, peanuts, powdered peanut butter, and sea salt. Stir to combine with liquid mixture.
- Transfer mixture onto lined baking tray and flatten using a rubber spatula. After the mixture has cooled, slice evenly into bars of your preferred size.
- Place full bar of dark chocolate onto a large plate melt in microwave using about 2-3 30-second rounds. Dip each bar into dark chocolate and place chocolate side up on parchment paper to cool and harden before enjoying.