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Apple-Date Bars

Yield 16 adult servings (serving size: 1 bar)
These offer a great homemade alternative to store-bought cereal bars. The butter contributes to the golden crust of the dense, moist fruit-studded treats. You can use walnuts instead of pecans or substitute raisins for the dates.

Ingredients

  • 9 ounces all-purpose flour (about 2 cups)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 7 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1/4 cup applesauce
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup chopped pitted dates
  • 1 teaspoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped peeled Granny Smith apple (about 1 large)
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped peeled Red Delicious apple (about 1 large)
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2/3 cup chopped pecans
  • Cooking spray

Nutrition Information

  • calories 279
  • caloriesfromfat 0.0 %
  • fat 9 g
  • satfat 3.6 g
  • monofat 3.4 g
  • polyfat 1.4 g
  • protein 3.3 g
  • carbohydrate 48.5 g
  • fiber 2 g
  • cholesterol 26 mg
  • iron 1.1 mg
  • sodium 193 mg
  • calcium 33 mg

How to Make It

  1. Preheat oven to 325°.

  2. Weigh or lightly spoon 9 ounces flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour and next 4 ingredients in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk. Set aside.

  3. Place sugar and butter in a large bowl, and beat with a mixer at high speed for 2 minutes or until light and fluffy. Add egg and egg whites, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in applesauce and vanilla. Gradually add flour mixture to sugar mixture; stir just until combined to form a stiff batter. Toss dates with 1 teaspoon flour. Toss apples with juice. Add dates, apples, and pecans to flour mixture, stirring just until combined. Pour batter into a 13 x 9–inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Bake at 325° for 1 hour and 5 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely on a wire rack.

  4. let your toddler help by: Locating and gathering the ingredients. Pouring the measured dry ingredients into the mixing bowl. Adding the measured dates, apples, and pecans to the batter.

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