Having snacks (like muffins or energy balls) stocked in the freezer is a pretty big necessity for me. And these lemon blueberry fruit and nut bar are perfect for just that. They're full of simple ingredients, easy to whip up and full of natural energy.
As someone who is constantly running out the door I love all things grab and go. However, mid afternoon I also find I need a bit more of a pick me up than I'd like to admit- especially in the winter months! And while coffee is just a given, it's not exactly practical for my daughter (ha!).
Which is exactly why I love any kind of fruit and nut bar.
These lemon blueberry bars are full of natural sugars, energy and of course flavor. Using dates, dried cherries and dried blueberries as the base means you'll not only get an uplift but also a great hit of antioxidants too!
And while a natural sugar hit is great, it's not awesome if you crash immediately. The walnuts in this recipe are full of healthy fats (and anti-inflammatory omega three's!) and help slow the release of all the energy from the fruit. Creating a nice balance of both energy and curing empty stomachs.
Note: these bars are perfect eaten right of the freezer or chilled in the fridge but will get a bit sticky if sitting at room temperature for a long time.
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Place the walnuts in the food processor and pulse until mostly ground (I use a vitamix for this recipe but it can get pretty sticky!).
Place the dates, cherries and lemon juice into the food processor and blend until fully combined. Use a spatula to scrape the mixture into a bowl and stir in the blueberries.
Line a 8x4 loaf pan with parchment paper and put the bar mixture into the pan. Using another piece of parchment paper, press the mixture down evenly into the pan. Remove the top piece of paper and top the mixture with 2 tbs of walnuts pressing them down slightly with the spatula.
Place the pan into the freezer for thirty minutes. Once mostly frozen, remove and cut into bars. Wrap the bars individually in parchment paper. This helps make them easy to grab and eat and assures they won't stick together in the freezer.
Place the wrapped bars back in the freezer to enjoy when needed! You can eat them frozen (dates don't freeze fully) or place in the fridge for an hour before consuming.
Fruit and nut bars, like energy balls are easy to whip together and absolutely tasty. They're a great mid afternoon snack because they're so full of energy and easy to munch on the go. Whip up a double batch, wrap them, store them and never worry about what to munch on!