I’ve been ruminating a lot lately on what it means to be gentle. To seek wellness and to be kind to yourself.
This topic seems to have slowly dominated my life, in the most benign and harmless way domination can—it’s found its way into my habits, my relationships, and even into a recent OOTD-turned-essay.
And I believe that’s a really good thing. It seems impossible to truly chase and subsequently accept wellness without having it affect all aspects of your life. And for me, being good to myself starts with what I feed my body.
I’ve been gluten free and soy free for nearly a whole year, and while I feel better in many ways, I expected the results to be more drastic. My thyroid results have improved, but in hindsight, what good is eliminating my number one culprit if I’m still consuming the next five?
So in addition to cutting gluten, soy and dairy, I’m nixing as many processed foods and meat as I can. Up until last week, I had still been eating deli meats, pepperettes and cheap frozen meat, so I’ll now be eliminating those old pals. I’ll carry on with fish, eggs and, on occasion, fresh meat from my local farm, but with ease as my mantra, I’m not hopping on any vegan or vegetarian title bandwagon. Rather, I like to think of it as simply eating a plant-based diet.
And on this plant-based diet, nuts and seeds have become my BFFs, so naturally, bars and granolas have, too.
Below is my recipe for homemade KIND bars which I make on weekends and enjoy during the week as a snack or crumbled on my yogurt. Whatever your food prerogative, I hope you these healthy bars a try.
2 c nuts (I used almonds, macadamia nuts and cashews)
1 c seeds (I used pumpkin seeds and sesame seeds)
3 T chia seeds
1/3 sticky stuff (can be dried cranberries, raisins, chopped dates etc.)
2 T coconut oil
1/2 c honey (do not substitute maple syrup or they won’t bind and hold their shape)
* 1 t vanilla extract
- Chop any large nuts and combine the nuts, mixed seeds, chia seeds, sticky stuff and zest.
- Combine and melt the coconut oil, honey and vanilla extract together.
- Pour the wet ingredients over the nut mixture and stir to combine.
- Pour mixture onto a sheet pan lined with parchment paper.
- Press the mixture down firmly to a consistent height (1/2-1″)
- Bake at 350 for 20 minutes.
- Allow to cool completely before cutting into bars or squares. If you wanted to drizzle on some chocolate, do so after cooling and before cutting.