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Author Notes: These hearty bars are perfect for snacking on the go. Not only is this recipe packed with plant-based protein, but they really are reminiscent of carrot cake! —Simple Green Smoothies
- 2 tablespoons chia seeds, plus 6 tbsp water
- 1 cup almond meal
- 1 cup gluten-free old fashioned oats
- 1/2 cup grated carrots
- 1/2 cup grated apple
- 1/2 cup coconut flakes
- 1/3 cup pepitas
- 1/3 cup sliced almonds
- 1 cup mashed banana
- 1 cup applesauce
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.
- Place chia seeds and water in a small bowl. Stir well and let stand for 5-10 minutes until a gel forms. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine almond meal, oats, grated carrots and apple, coconut flakes, pepitas, sunflower seeds, and sliced almonds.
- In a medium bowl, stir together mashed banana, applesauce, vanilla extract, spices, and sea salt. Stir in the chia gel.
- Add the banana chia mixture to the bowl with the other ingredients. Stir well. Transfer the mixture to the baking dish. Smooth the top. Place in oven and bake for 35-40 minutes or until golden around the edges and baked through. Let cool completely, then cut into bars.