Make Your Own “Full Bars”



A few weeks ago I had to go to the doctor to have a splinter removed. Yeah, I know. Lame. I had been pruning these ginormous barberry bushes we have in our backyard, and despite very thick gloves, managed to get a splinter lodged in my finger so deeply that I had no choice.

I stopped at the drug store to buy some bandages after my little $97-splinter-debacle – short on time and long on things to do. In a rush, I thought I’d just grab some sort of bar for a snack as I headed back to work. Being the drugstore, the selection wasn’t the best – there were no Lara Bars, Clif Bars, or, really, any bars I would generally eat. But, there was a curious bar called “Fullbar” that had relatively few ingredients, all of which I could pronounce. I picked it up and off I went.

As it turns out, these Fullbars are supposed to help with weight loss, as you are supposed to eat them 30 minutes before a meal to control your hunger during said meal. Interesting concept.  I thought they were not bad, but at $2.50 each, it is hard to justify buying them, especially because I’m not really using them for their intended purpose and because they are just puffed wheat cereal bars. I have to say though, these bars are pretty filling – likely because the puffed wheat expands in your stomach when you drink water.

Sadly, I think these bars are just another case of overpriced “diet foods” because people looking to lose weight will generally pay any price (within reason) for anything they believe will indeed help them lose weight. I actually liked the bars, I just think it’s sad they are priced so high.

With fairly simple ingredients, I thought I could replicate them at home, so I did, except mine have only four ingredients. And, they cost a heckuva lot less than $2.50 each! It took two tries to get it right, as I initially thought I could just use honey instead of brown rice syrup. That’d be a “no” – brown rice syrup is apparently a better binder. The batch with honey tasted fine but did not hold together.

Whether you’re trying to lose weight or just like the convenience of bars, these bars are super easy and filling. No need to pay $2.50 per bar for pre-made. A batch of 10 will set you back about $4 total if you amortize the cost of the ingredients. Here is how I got that number – based on roughly the amount of times you could get the recipe quantity out of one standard sized container of the ingredients:

$3.69 – peanut butter (15 oz)/ 4 = $.92
$6.99 – brown rice syrup (21 oz)/5 = $1.40
$2.19 – puffed wheat cereal/2 (6 oz) = $1.10
$7.49 – peanut flour/30 (16 oz) = $.25

Total: $3.67 for 10 bars, or $.37 each.

full_bar

DIY Full Bars

Makes: 10 bars

Ingredients:

  • 6 cups puffed wheat cereal
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup brown rice syrup
  • 2 tablespoons peanut flour (optional)

Method:full_bar2

  • Spray a sheet pan (9×12 would be good) and set aside
  • Place puffed wheat cereal into a large bowl
  • Melt peanut butter, brown rice syrup together in a small saucepan over low heat; stir in peanut flour
  • Pour melted mixture over the puffed rice cereal and combine (quickly)
  • Pour coated cereal into the sheet pan and press firmly to smooth out into an even consistency
  • Refrigerate for 30 minutes before cutting into bars (you do not have to store them in the refrigerator)

Nutrition

Here is a comparison of homemade vs. store bought bars. Pretty close indeed.

DIY Full Barsvs. store bought Full Bars
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