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Pumpkin Seeds

It’s October and that means pumpkin season is here. Pumpkin spiced lattes, pumpkin spiced cake, pumpkin pie and PUMPKIN SEEDS! Pumpkin seeds are easy to bake and add one more element of fun to pumpkin carving with your family. My kids eat these by the handful.

First, buy a pumpkin to carve with your kids (or just yourself!)

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Separate the seeds out from the pumpkin. Don’t worry if a little pumpkin in mixed in, it tastes great that way. No need to wash the seeds.

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Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Melt approximately 1/2-1 tbsp. butter for every 1 cup of pumpkin seeds. Pour the melted butter into your bowl of seeds. Add salt to taste.

Spread the seeds in a single layer onto a baking sheet.

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Bake for 15 minutes then flip the seeds over. Bake for an additional 10-12 minutes, or until nicely browned and crisp.

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Pumpkin Seeds
Ingredients
  • pumpkin seeds
  • 1/2-1 tbsp melted butter for every 1 cup of seeds
  • salt to taste
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees

  2. Separate seeds from pumpkin. It is fine for a little pumpkin to be mixed in with the seeds. Do not wash or clean the seeds.

  3. Add 1/2-1 tbsp of melted butter for every 1 cup of seeds. Mix.

  4. Add salt to taste. Mix.

  5. Spread seeds in a single layer on a baking sheet.

  6. Bake for 15 minutes then flip seeds over. Bake for an additional 10-12 minutes or until the seeds are nicely browned and crisp.

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Homemade Granola Bars and Toddler Peanut Butter Bites

I’ve been debating on whether I should write this recipe as gourmet granola bars or toddler bites. You can easily adjust this recipe to make either. I couldn’t decide, so I’m going to explain how to make both versions of this So whether you’re a mom of toddlers, teenagers, or just like granola, this recipe will work for you.

I’m actually eating one of these granola bars right now. They are sweet, salty and tart all at the same time. I worked on this recipe for quite awhile. First the bars were too soft, then too hard, then not enough peanut butter et cetera, et cetera. Feel free to play with it a bit yourself to get it exactly right for you. You can switch up the ingredients and the boiling time of the sugars to change the taste and consistency.

First, in a large bowl combine the rolled oats, dried cherries (you can substitute in raisins for toddlers) and whole almonds. Leave out the almonds if making toddler bites. They are a choking hazard.

Then line an 8X8 pan with parchment paper. It doesn’t need to be perfectly lined. The bars will push the paper flat.

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Now mix your honey and brown sugar together in a medium sized saucepan.

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Heat on medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar, until boiling. (To get a firmer consistency boil for 30-60 seconds).

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Turn off the heat, but leave the saucepan on the element.

Stir in the salt and peanut butter until smooth. (I leave out the salt for toddler bites.)

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Pour the sugar/peanut butter mixture into the bowl with the rolled oats. Mix well.

Press the mixture into the parchment lined pan. Don’t panic, the mixture takes several minutes to set, so you have time to press it down evenly.

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Let the bars cool slightly and then sprinkle the chocolate chips on top. Press the chips firmly into the mixture.

Place the pan immediately into the fridge to prevent the chips from melting.

After about 30 minutes you can remove the pan from the fridge and cut into bars or 1 inch toddler bites. Enjoy!

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Note: you cannot give honey (even cooked) to a child younger than a year.

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Homemade Granola Bars and Peanut Butter Toddler Bites
Ingredients
  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup dried cherries may sub raisins
  • 1/2 cup whole almonds
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup peanut butter
  • 4 tbsp chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, mix together the rolled oats, dried cherries or raisins and almonds. Do not use the almonds if making toddler bites - they are a choking hazard.

  2. On medium heat, mix together the honey and brown sugar in a saucepan. Bring to a boil and turn heat off, but leave saucepan on the element.

  3. Mix in the salt and peanut butter until smooth.

  4. Add the peanut butter/honey mixture to the bowl with rolled oats. Mix well to evenly combine.

  5. Press mixture evenly into a parchment lined 8X8 pan. Allow to cool slightly.

  6. Sprinkle chocolate chips overtop and press firmly into the mixture.

  7. Immediately place the pan in the fridge to prevent the chocolate chips from melting.

  8. After 30 minutes in the fridge, remove the pan and cut into bars or 1 inch X 1 inch bites.

Recipe Notes

Toddler bites: sub out cherries for raisins. Eliminate almonds. Cut into 1 inch squares.

Consistency: if bars are too soft for your liking, boil the honey/sugar mixture for 30-60 seconds.