Our daughter introduced us to chia seeds a couple years ago, but then we did without since she left again, this time for Hanoi, Vietnam. However, I’m creating some protein bars made without toxins, preservatives, etc, ad nauseam, and needing some additional protein. Flax seed fits that bill, but flax also has a laxative affect (that’s right, you do not need to consume synthetic harsh laxatives) that is not comfortable for some people, (though they are higher in protein and lower in carbs). SO, chia to the rescue! (Chia seeds are also absorbed by the body unlike whole flax seeds which generally pass through which is why they need grinding before ingesting for best results). Both flax seeds and chia seeds are good for us, they have different nutritional values, making neither better than the other, so i include both in our diets.
Sure, we knew of chia seeds, but primarily as a novelty!
Incredibly (and thankfully), i discovered that chia seeds are grown here in the United States, though they are native to Mexico and Guatemala. This one producer is Heartland Chia – seeds are grown, harvested, packaged in Franklin, Kentucky.
Here’s a link to the published Pumpkin Chia Granola Bars. But for now, since i have an abundance of home canned unsweetened applesauce, i replaced pumpkin with it. (Until this fall, when my winter squashes should be ready and i’ll make these with pumpkin)
Applesauce Chia Granola Bars
- 2 1/4 cups rolled oats (Grain Millers, St. Ansgar, IA)*
- 1/2 cup honey (Welter Seed & Honey, Onslow, IA)
- 1 cup unsweetened applesauce (grown in our backyard)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (McCormick Pure, Madagascar)
- 1/4 cup chia seeds (Heartland Chia, Franklin, KY)
*purchased through Amazon at Grandma’s Cupboard
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F
- Spray an 8×8 inch baking pan with olive oil
- In a medium bowl, add applesauce, honey, and vanilla extract. Mix well.
- Fold oats and chia seeds into batter, mix well.
- Place dough in greased baking dish. (i spray mine with Bertolli Olive oil spray)
- Press down until entire sheet is evenly covered.
- Place in the oven for 20-30 minutes, test consistency with toothpick
- Remove from oven and allow to cool a bit before cutting into 8-10 bars.