Instead of cereal or a muffin, serve these family-pleasing, cake-like breakfast bars with wedges of cantaloupe or a bowl of fruit.
1 cup (250 mL) all-purpose flour
½ cup (125 mL) whole wheat flour
½ cup (125 mL) quick cooking rolled oats
1 tsp (5 mL) baking powder
2 tsp (10 mL) cinnamon
pinch of ground nutmeg
½ tsp (2 mL) salt
⅓ cup (75 mL) peanut butter
¼ cup (60 mL) butter or margarine, at room temperature
¾ cup (175 mL) brown sugar
1 orange, finely grated peel only
1 cup (250 mL) milk
1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla
1½ cups (375 mL) mixed dried fruit, such as raisins, cranberries, apricots or apples
½ cup (125 mL) unsalted peanuts, coarsely chopped
Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Spray a 13x9-inch (3-L) baking pan with cooking spray. In a medium bowl, combine flours with oats, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.
Using an electric mixer, in a large bowl, beat peanut butter with butter and orange peel, until well blended. Beat in brown sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Beat in buttermilk and vanilla, scraping down sides as necessary, until well combined. Stir in flour mixture, followed by dried fruit.
Pour batter into prepared pan, smoothing the top. Sprinkle evenly with peanuts. Bake until lightly browned and edges just start to pull away from sides of pan, about 22 to 25 minutes. Cool completely in pan before cutting into bars.
Per bar: 143 calories, 5.5 g fat (2.2 g monounsaturated), 3.7 g protein, 21.1 g carbohydrates.
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