Spaghetti Squash + No Bake Granola Bars

Happy Monday!

I spent last night making food since I can only follow football for short period of time.  I watch much longer than I used to, but I just can’t stay glued to the screen.  We also didn’t get the Packers game, so I wasn’t terribly interested.

For dinner I made the spaghetti squash that I bought a couple weeks ago.  I have written about spaghetti squash before, but not how to cook it.  The way you cook a spaghetti squash is the same way you cook the delicata squash I made last week.  For those of you who missed it, here are the steps:

Spaghetti Squash

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Cut the stem off and cut lengthwise.

2. Scoop out the seeds. You can toss them or save them for later if you want to bake them.

3. Brush each half with extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

4. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place each half open side down.  Cook for 30-40 minutes depending on the size of your squash.

5. Once it is done cooking, use a fork to scrape the inside which will result in spaghetti like strands.

Where last time I served it with pasta sauce and basil, today I used a recipe from Angela at ohsheglows.com for creamy avocado sauce. You can find the recipe here. It was really quick and simple to make. You can’t go wrong with avocado, garlic, and basil in my opinion.
I got one half and Neil had the other half. I couldn’t even finish mine because I was so full. Of course my meat loving husband’s one complaint was that it would have tasted better with a giant steak underneath it, but he still liked it.  Spaghetti squash is a good pasta replacement if you are looking to save on carbs or calories for your meal. 
After dinner the night game hadn’t even started yet, so I definitely had a lot of time to move on to something sweeter.  I had come across a recipe for no bake granola bars and decided to give them a try.  This was actually my second try; I had attempted to make my own a couple days ago but they didn’t stick together too well.  I turned them into granola instead.  
This time I seem to have gotten the ratio of wet to dry ingredients correct.  I wanted to loosely use the recipe I had seen and be able to experiment with ingredients.  Here are some I pulled out of the pantry:
-coconut nectar
-oats
-sunflower seeds
-Earth Balance peanut butter
-unsweetened coconut
-brown rice puffs
-chia seeds (didn’t use this time)
I was excited to try out the Earth Balance peanut butter.  We have Jif natural peanut butter at home and the ingredient profile of Earth Balance isn’t much better except that this one has added flaxseed in it.  I’m not sure if I will buy it again since the one we have been using isn’t worse than this one ingredient-wise.
Dry ingredients
Wet ingredients
No bake granola bars

2 cups oats
1 cup brown rice puffs
1/3 cup sunflower seeds
1/3 cup unsweetened coconut
2 Tbsp flax seeds
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup coconut nectar
1/3 cup peanut butter
1. In a large bowl, mix the dry ingredients. In another bowl, mix wet ingredients. 
2. Combine wet and dry and spread in a baking pan.  It will be very sticky, so you may want to try pressing it down with saran wrap on your hand. 
3. Put pan in the fridge (or freezer if you’re impatient like me) and let the bars harden up. You can either cut them before they go in or after. I cut mine after because they had more structural integrity.  
4. Once they have solidified together, leave them covered in the fridge or individually wrap them in saran wrap to take on the go.
These are delicious. If anyone makes them, please let me know how you like them or if you have any suggestions/additions.  I enjoyed one with my cup of tea and relaxed for the rest of the night.  
I hope that everyone had a good weekend and has a good start to the week! I am trying to decide between going for a long run tonight and going to the gym. Either way I am looking forward to a good workout!
Question(s) of the day: Do you prefer using weights at the gym or going for a run? What other types of exercise do you find beneficial?

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