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Angela Liddon shares her favourite vegan energy bar recipe

The Oh She Glows blogger shares the recipe that put her on the map!

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Oh She Glows, Glo bar, Angela Liddon

Photo, Angela Liddon.

This is the granola bar that started it all! In 2009, I created a vegan energy bar recipe and to say it was an instant hit is an understatement. People online (and offline) went crazy for these and they became so popular that I started getting all kinds of requests to sell my Glo Bars to adoring fans. Several months later, I opened an online vegan bakery featuring this Glo Bar and a handful of other flavours. I baked (by hand), more than 500 Glo Bars each week. It was the adventure of a lifetime, and when I started writing my cookbook, I knew I wanted to feature a couple of the most popular Glo Bar recipes as a thank-you to my loyal customers. So here they are, dear Glo Bar fans — this is my thank-you for your incredible support over the years! And if you’ve never had a Glo Bar before, I hope you enjoy them just as much as we do! They’re gluten-free, oil-free, raw/no bake, soy-free and refined sugar–free.

Classic Glo Bar recipe (makes 12 bars)
Prep time: 15 minutes
Freeze time: 10 minutes

Ingredients
1 1⁄2 cups gluten-free rolled oats
1 1⁄4 cups rice crisp cereal
1⁄4 cup hemp seeds
1⁄4 cup sunflower seeds
1⁄4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
2 tablespoons chia seeds
1⁄2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1⁄4 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt
1⁄2 cup, plus 1 tablespoon, brown rice syrup
1⁄4 cup roasted peanut butter or almond butter
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1⁄4 cup mini non-dairy chocolate chips (such as Enjoy Life brand) (optional)

Directions
1. Line a 9-inch square cake pan with two pieces of parchment paper (one going each way).

2. In a large bowl, combine the oats, rice crisp cereal, hemp seeds, sunflower seeds, coconut, sesame seeds, chia seeds, cinnamon, and salt and mix.

3. In a small saucepan, stir together the brown rice syrup and peanut butter until well combined. Cook over medium to heat until the mixture softens and bubbles slightly, then remove the pan from the heat and stir in the vanilla.

4. Pour the peanut butter mixture over the oat mixture, using a spatula to scrape every last bit out of the pan. Stir well with a large metal spoon until all of the oats and cereal are coated in the wet mixture. (The resulting mixture will be very thick and difficult to stir. If you get tired, just picture me making five hundred of these bars in a row, and you’ll feel better!) If using the chocolate chips, allow the mixture to cool slightly before folding in the chips. This will prevent them from melting.

5. Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan, spreading it out into an even layer. Lightly wet your hands and press down on the mixture to even it out. Use a pastry roller to compact the mixture firmly and evenly. This helps the bars hold together better. Press down on the edges with your fingers to even out.

6. Place the pan in the freezer, uncovered, and chill for 10 minutes, or until firm.

7. Lift the oat square out of the pan, using the parchment paper as handles, and place it on a cutting board. With a pizza roller (or a serrated knife), slice the square into 6 rows and then slice them in half to make 12 bars total.

8. Wrap the bars individually in plastic wrap or foil and store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. Alternatively, you can store them in the freezer for up to 1 month.

Tip: To make the bars nut-free, substitute sunflower seed butter for the peanut butter. Look for lightly sweetened sunflower seed butter, such as by Sunbutter, because unsweetened sunflower seed butter can have a bitter aftertaste.

Excerpted from The Oh She Glows Cookbook by Angela Liddon. Copyright Angela Liddon, 2014. Reprinted by permission of Penguin Canada Books Inc.