Thursday, March 29, 2012

Healthy Makeover: Strawberry Lemonade Bars

Oh, how I missed baking.  I am back and with a healthy makeover, no less. :)

I actually came across these bars while searching for a recipe to use up the copious amounts for strawberries I have in my freezer.

They are very similar to the lemon bars I made, but this time I wanted to try to make them everything free (i.e. egg free, dairy free, gluten free, vegan.)

So, what did I change?

  • Reduced the sugar by approx. 75% and replaced with maple syrup
  • Eliminated the eggs and replaced with flax
  • Eliminated the butter, replaced with margarine and reduced by approx. 50%
  • Eliminated the all-purpose flour and replaced with oat flour

They turned out rather well considering this was a first attempt.  These bars are not overly sweet and very tangy from the strawberry/lemon juice combo.  They didn't quite gel together as much as they would by using eggs, but overall I am happy with the results.

Next time I may try increasing the amount of filling by about a third so the bars are a bit thicker.

Strawberry Lemonade Bars (Makes 16 Bars)
Adapted from Baking Bites

1 1/2 cup oat flour*
1/4 tsp salt
3 tbsp margarine**
2 tsp maple syrup

1/2 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup pureed strawberries
2 tbsp maple syrup
2 flax eggs
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
2 tbsp oat flour

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease a 8x8 pan.

Combine oat flour, salt, margarine and maple syrup.  Press mixture into pan and bake for 10-12 minutes.  Allow to cool.

Beat together lemon juice, strawberries and maple syrup.  Add flax eggs and stir until combined.  Add baking powder, salt and oat flour.  (Mixture will be runny.)

Pour mixture on cooled crust and bake for 17-20 minutes.  Cool and cut into squares.

*Make your own oat flour, by grinding whole oats in a coffee grinder.  To keep gluten free, check for gluten free oats.

**To keep vegan, use a brand like Earth Balance.

To you keep a stash of frozen fruit in your freezer?  Do you ever bake with it?

Stay Healthy,

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