Energy Bars with Toasted Nuts & Seeds

autumn berries ginkgo leaves rose leaves

It’s finally autumn and I am enjoying the change of season. Especially when crossing the river on an early morning. Fog is crawling from the Elbe to the hills surrounding it. On brighter days the sun is floodlighting the historic buildings on the other side of the Augustusbrücke. The castle church and other buildings look as golden as most of the trees, which are constantly losing their leaves. We have jumped into many leaf piles and collected the red and yellow ones because F insists on sticking them on windows and paintings. The only thing that I find a little bit annoying is how short the days have become. That and a lot of rain makes taking pictures indoors and with natural light very difficult. But maybe it is exactly this light that goes well with the dark colours of the ingredients used for these energy bars?

energy barsDried fruits and seeds are ingredients my grandparents always had on hand during the cold and dark months. Apples were thinly sliced and dried over a coal and wood oven. Walnuts and hazelnuts were stored in large bags on the threshing flour. I kind of inherited this gathering gene but of course I don’t do much collecting and drying myself anymore. With so many different seeds, nuts, and fruits available at most grocery stores, I just throw a couple of bags into my shooping cart and take them home. And then? Then I realise that this probably would have been way more fun if I had collected them myself. But there is still the fun of processing them as an ingredient in so many different recipes.

For these energy bars I roasted some of the nuts and seeds which increased the flavour a lot and gave them a special twist. To form them I placed pieces of plastic wrap in a square muffin pan and pressed the fruit and nut mass into it. If you don’t have such a pan, you can use a larger baking pan lined with plastic. Press the mass into the pan and cut into squares or rectangles. Or for an even easier version just form them into walnut sized balls.

Energy Bars with Toasted Nuts and Seeds (makes 6 square bars)

45 g (1/3 cup) sunflower seeds
30 g (1/3 cup) walnut halves
40 g (1/3 cup) pumpkin seeds
140 g (1 cup) dried medjol dates
150 g (1 cup) dried apricots
50 g (1/3 cup) dried cranberries
2 tablespoons flax seeds

Place the sunflower seeds, walnuts halves, and pumpkin seeds in a large pan and toast until golden brown. Let cool. Place cooled nuts and seeds in a food processor and grind into a meal. Coarsely chop the dates and apricots and add to the food processor as well. Process until a paste forms and clumps together. Depending on your food processor this might take a while. Make sure your processor doesn’t overheat and make some pauses while processing.
Line 6 square muffin tins with plastic wrap (or a baking dish) and press the mass into the tins. Remove and wrap in plastic to store them.


  • Lope
    4 years ago

    Just gotta say that is some stunning photography. And a great recipe as well. I like to make my own ‘energy bars’, too, the ones in the store do nothing for me.

  • Donna
    4 years ago

    I love this recipe! This energy bar is good for kids especially for parties.

  • 4 years ago

    I do not think that the lack of light is hindering your photography at all. Absolutely beautiful photos! Energy bars are perfect for this time of year! Thanks for sharing!

  • 4 years ago

    What beautiful pictures! your energy bars sound great too.

  • 4 years ago

    I love the way you photographed these! Perfect autumn styling. I know this is a food blog, but I love reading along so much that I just had to nominate you for a sunshine award. I’ll leave the link to my post if you’re interested :)

    • Mihl
      4 years ago

      Thank you, Hannah!

  • 4 years ago

    The pictures and lighting are beautiful, they fit the season well! And the bars sound lovely and perfect for the autumn. :)

  • 4 years ago

    My grandparents always had a basket of unshelled nuts with a big silver nutcracker, and bowls of roasted salted pumpkin seeds and chickpeas left out for snacking. Always. That’s how I got happily addicted to them for life. :)
    I love your little square muffin pan idea, but lacking that I think I’d like to try these for my nephew and use animal cookie cutters, or maybe the dinosaur cutters. That would be fun…SuperEnergySaurs. Thanks for the recipe!

  • 5 years ago

    Your pictures of the colorful fall foliage are beautiful! Shorter days really are inconvenient for people who want to take pictures of their food, aren’t they? Soon we’re going to have to start eating dinner at noon to take advantage of the natural light!

    Maybe F is going to be an interior decorator when she grows up? :)

  • 5 years ago

    Those pictures are amazing and will definitely try those bars! Love anything with dates and apricots!

  • 5 years ago

    love your autumn leaves – we are enjoying the lighter nights (great for photos but not so good for putting kids to bed) but this sort of energy bar would be great for picnics in the park

  • 5 years ago

    die runzeligen alten nehme ich gerne :-)
    schoene bilder!
    liebe gruesse,

  • Your bars look EXACTLY like the ones from Whole Foods bakery that I used to be completely obsessed with, but they contain honey. Soo yeah, this recipe might be my new favorite obsession! Thanks ;)

  • 5 years ago

    What gorgeous pictures Mihl! I’ve been enjoying the lovely, crisp mornings which come with autumn, but the last few days it’s been non-stop rain so I’ve found myself longing for summer again.
    These fruit & nut bars sound delicious. I’m always amazed at how much more flavour toasted nuts and seeds have so I’m sure these snacks are extra good.

  • 5 years ago

    I’m with you on the lack of light, I absolutely adore everything about Fall, the colours, the crisp air, the golden light, but the short days completely mess with my head, and my photography. I’ve never done any collecting/drying before, it’s actually never crossed my mind, the perks of convenience I guess. These bars look lovely, I really need to make some energy bars again instead of going for the store bought stuff.

  • 5 years ago

    Love this recipe ! We do a lot of collecting/drying at home, sometimes I find it exhausting, but most of the time, I enjoy it a lot ! This makes me think that there’s a bucket full of elderberries waiting for me in the kitchen… and 3 kg of apples… and the same amount of pears..! :-)