I woke up this morning feeling pretty low. Truth be told, if left unchecked, my moods can be pretty erratic. Depression seems to run on my mom’s side of the family and it’s something I’ve dealt with overcoming much of my adult life. I will get more into that in another post. My point here is that I have my share of low energy days and dealing with a high energy toddler feeling like that, requires colossal effort. I’ve found that my best defenses against becoming overwhelmed in that situation are:
1. Deep breathing
2. Working up a sweat
3. Eating highly nutritious food
Since it isn’t always convenient to whip something up when feeling drained I make sure to keep some version of this energy bar in my fridge at all times. This lasts my family of 3 about a week. My 17 month old LOVES it which, if you have kids you know, is a huge win. It’s extremely simple to make and is chalk full of nutritiously dense goodies. I play with this recipe a lot and it changes almost every time I make it. I’ve included my favorite version here. It is a perfect jumping off point for you to substitute different ingredients you love and mix and match flavor combinations.
Cherry coconut cacao bar:
1 cup walnuts or almonds
1/3 cup chia seeds
1/3 cup ground flax seeds
1/3 cup hemp seeds
1/4 cup rinsed and toasted quinoa
2 tbsp mesquite powder*
1/4 cup cacao nibs
1/4 cup coconut flakes
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup dried cherries
1 cup dates
2 tablespoons melted coconut oil or coconut butter
*Mesquite powder is a delicious high protein superfood that I include in many of my recipes for an easy nutrient and flavor boost. The powder is ground from the entire pod of the mesquite plant and has a sweet, nutty flavor. It contains calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron, zinc and fiber.
Rinse your quinoa well and toast in frying pan on low heat until quinoa starts to brown and you smell it’s nutty aroma. Grind flax seeds in a coffee grinder, quite possibly the best kitchen tool ever, as I explained in my last post. Put all the dry ingredients in your food processor, then add the dates and cherries and process until everything sticks together well. Press into a lined pan or a glass Tupperware and set in the fridge for an hour or two. Cut into bars or roll into balls and keep covered in fridge for up to a week.
Enjoy your natural, healthy energy boost! Perfect for that pesky afternoon slump. 😊