Ironically, I first discovered Weelicious after the release of her first cookbook last fall rather than through her blog. It was one of those recommendations that pop up from Amazon based on your previous purchases and that is when my family fell in love with many of her recipes. I love the approach she takes with making good food appealing to kids while using healthful ingredients and avoiding unnecessary additives like food coloring. I actually have two lovely beets in my fridge waiting to be made into her red velvet cupcakes and pink icing.
After enjoying her first release, I jumped at the chance to review her latest book Weelicious Lunches and do not think that you have to have kids in school to benefit from the many recipes and ideas housed in this book. Chapters like “pb&j” present new twists on kid favorites and other chapters and recipes offer new ideas to add to your regular lunch rotation. Catherine also lists pantry staples through beautiful photos and provides a chart outlining allergy friendly recipes in easy-to-read columns
My five-year-old loves to help in the kitchen and there are few things as rewarding in motherhood as hearing her rave about something we have made together or ask to make more to share with neighbors or friends. Believe me we have plenty of days filled with uneaten food, especially from my toddler, so it makes moments like these shine even brighter.
I continue my mission to get my kids to try new things and to eat a well-rounded diet, but sometimes you need a fresh set of ideas and other times you need to start with things you already know they love. That recipe for us this week was the Chocolate Chip Granola Bars. My kids love granola bars and would eat them for breakfast, lunch and dinner is I let them. The ones at the store can be pricey and often contain too many ingredients for my taste, plus I was happy to discover that this recipe came together in very little time. I probably only spent about five minutes combining the ingredients before popping them in the oven and my little helper did most of the work!
Weelicious Chocolate Chip Granola Bars
Makes about 30 bars
4 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
¼ cup whole-wheat flour
½ cup shredded unsweetened coconut
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup chocolate chips (or raisins or other dried fruit)
½ teaspoon kosher salt
½ cup canola oil
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
½ cup honey
1. Preheat the oven to 325ºF and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Combine the oats, flour, coconut, brown sugar, chocolate chips and salt in a large bowl.
3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the canola oil, vanilla, and honey.
4. Pour the wet ingredients over the oat mixture and stir to combine.
5. Spread the granola mixture on the baking sheet and shape it into a 9X13-inch rectangle that’s about 1 inch thick.
6. Bake for 40 minutes, or until golden and dry to the touch.
7. Cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes, then cut into 3 x 1-inch bars using a serrated knife. These bars will remain fresh for several weeks if wrapped individually in parchment or wax paper.
Weelicious features yogurt in many recipes such as “Fruity Delight” and “Hubby’s Better Than Ice Cream” and lists it as one of its pantry staples. They have teamed up with Stonyfield to offer one TCDR reader a copy of the new Weelicious Lunches cookbook as well as free product coupons for Stonyfield yogurt.
A copy of the book was provided for this review and the recipe is shared with permission. No compensation was received, but affiliate links may be used and the views and opinions are mine.