Frugal Fridays: Granola Bars and Snack Exchange

A couple of years ago my sister gave me the best granola bar recipe. So when my friend L invited me to a healthy snack exchange at her house, I knew exactly what I would bring!

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As standard practice, every Sunday I make a sheet of granola bars for the week ahead. Granola bars are one of the most expensive prepackaged snacks, so a quick make-at-home alternative saves dollars each week, My husband is a horrible snacker, and the girls need snacks for lunches. So I make up a batch of this recipe and they are good for the week.

Mix:
3 cups organic quick oats
4 cups of other stuff (sunflower and pumpkin seeds, nuts if not going to school, dried fruit, yogurt or chocolate chips, etc.)
1 can sweetened condensed milk

You spread it on a cookie sheet, press it down, bake for 20 minutes at 350. When the bars are still warm, cut them with a clean wet knife. Allow them to cool in place, then s transfer to an airtight storage container.

The only trouble with making granola bars is that the girls get tired of them month after month. When L invited me to her snack exchange, I leapt at the chance.

Here’s the scoop with a snack exchange. Everyone makes healthy snacks and packages them in groups of six. You include a list all the contents, so everyone can avoid whatever they don’t eat, and ideally the recipe, so they can make it again if they like it. You also bring some samples for trying.

So to make a short story long, I whipped up 10 dozen granola bars of various flavours, and packaged them with some free labels designed by Cathe Holden. I love her stuff! And I have a stationary fet*sh, so any chance to use stationary…

Spice and I tromped over to L’s house with packages of granola bars. Everyone put their snacks on the table and their sales on the coffee table so the kids and adults could taste them. Then we drew numbers and took turns picking out our snacks. You go home with as many packs of six as you arrived with… But with a great variety of snacks.

I let Spice pick all our selections, and so we came home with breakfast cookies, banana muffins… All sorts of stuff! And I only had to make the granola bars. I think we have enough frozen school snacks for a couple of months. However, there is no accounting for the snack monster…(my husband.) thank goodness he is scared of the freezer.

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