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Monkey Bars

Yield 16 servings (serving size: 1 bar)
Juice rehydrates the raisins so they stay plump while baking. This moist snacking cake might remind you of banana bread.


  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons apple juice
  • 4.5 ounces all-purpose flour (about 1 cup)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup mashed ripe banana (1 medium)
  • 3 tablespoons low-fat buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1/3 cup chopped walnuts
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 tablespoon powdered sugar

Nutrition Information

  • calories 137
  • caloriesfromfat 0.0 %
  • fat 4.7 g
  • satfat 2 g
  • monofat 1 g
  • polyfat 1.3 g
  • protein 2 g
  • carbohydrate 22.7 g
  • fiber 0.7 g
  • cholesterol 8 mg
  • iron 0.6 mg
  • sodium 122 mg
  • calcium 27 mg

How to Make It

  1. Preheat oven to 350°.

  2. Combine raisins and apple juice in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave at HIGH 1 minute. Weigh or lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine flour and next 3 ingredients in a bowl; stir with a whisk. Combine brown sugar and butter in a large bowl, and beat with a mixer at medium speed until blended. Add banana and next 3 ingredients, beating well. Add flour mixture, beating just until combined. Stir in raisin mixture and walnuts.

  3. Spread batter in an 8-inch square metal baking pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely on a wire rack. Sprinkle with powdered sugar, and cut into bars.


  5. Kitchen Classroom: Ripe Bananas When selecting bananas, the only way to tell how ripe they are is by the color of the peel. The skin of a perfectly ripe banana will be yellow and slightly speckled with brown spots. It'll be softer and sweeter than green bananas (or even slightly green ones), which are not yet ripe.


  7. Young Chefs can:

  8. Mash banana

  9. Measure raisins and walnuts


  11. Older Chefs can:

  12. Stir together dry ingredients

  13. Stir raisin mixture and walnuts into batter