Lovingly Healthy Cookie Bars

Hello Friends!

As promised on Facebook and in this morning’s Friday Five Foodie Finds post, I am sharing a delightfully healthy Valentine’s Day cookie bar recipe.

lovingly healthy cookie bars


As I thought about writing this post, I got to thinking about the circumstances around making these healthy bars.

It was the morning after (rather the afternoon after because I stayed up so late I didn’t get up until 11am) a little fight with the BF. Okay it was a big one but it’s roots were very small and it was fueled by tiredness, hormones and boy not understanding girl not understanding boy then it grew into a bit of a monster.

I felt absolutely awful when I woke up.  I was an emotional mess the night before.  My eyes were so swollen I could barely check my Facebook and Twitter in the morning.

I even thought about how these M&Ms were like me…broken but beautiful.  Yes, I was a bit emotional and tired.

I wanted to make it up to the BF.  To say that I was sorry for being a crazy person and to let him know that I loved him. 

I did this by creating a delicious treat for him.  He has wanted me to make healthier treats so I modified a recipe that I had in my recipe binder to try to grant him his wish of a healthful goody.


Lovingly Healthy Cookie Bars  

lovingly healthy cookie bars close up
~Make these to show your loved one you care about their health and their taste buds~


  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup applesauce (I used unsweetened, but sweetened just, well, makes it sweeter!)
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 TBS Splenda (substituted for 1/4 cup of sugar)
  • 2 TBS chia seeds + 6 TBS warm water for chia gel (in place of 2 eggs)
  • 1 TBS vanilla
  • 1tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour (or substitute more white flour if you like.such as 1 cup white, 1 cup wheat)
  • 3/4 cup M&Ms
  • sunflower seeds (if desired)

How To:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Mix your chia gel.  Then mix together prepare butter, applesauce, sugars, vanilla and chia gel.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix your dry ingredients: salt, baking soda, flour.
  4. Add in your M&Ms.  If you like salted sunflower seeds, you can also add some to the batter, however the BF doesn’t like nuts or seeds very well.
  5. Pour batter into a brownie pan.  It will be pretty thick so you may have to smooth it out.
  6. Add a few more M&Ms to the top and press down.  Add sunflour seeds to the top. (I only did it on half because I love my BF.)
  7. Bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees F or until edges are just brown.

The mixing and taste-testing and picture-taking was immensely therapeutic.  I felt calmer the more I stirred my creation.  Even doing the dishes afterwards made me feel better.

By that evening I was browning some ground turkey for a new Kashi pizza I found (since it had no meat on it) and feeling pretty much back to my usual self.  Possibly a little tired, but the puffy-eyed monster was gone.

The BF made some broccoli for the side and as he put sea salt and margarine and pepper on top I felt so loved and like everything was going to be okay…everything felt so right.  How silly is that?  I mean he’s just fixing some veggies, right?

As we finished up dinner and I anxiously awaited cutting up the cookie bar and finding out his reaction, the BF took my huge heart-shaped cookie cutter (that I was using as a photo prop) and used it to cut out a ginormous piece of the bar.  Then he said, “This thing is..heavy!”  (Duh you have a huge piece!)  Goodness he makes me laugh.

Food is so much more than sustenance for the body.  Food can mean so much more.  It can mean “I’m sorry I am a hysterical mess sometimes” or “I love you so so much.”  Cooking and baking can be therapeutic and grant us relief from the chaos that is our lives.  It can also make things feel normal again.

Oh and by the way, after I asked him and confirmed with him numerous times, he loved the healthy cookie bars.  SUCCESS! :-)

Okay this is a picture to show off my nails

Share these bars with the one you love, because the process of making them, the process of eating them, and the fact that they are semi-healthy will delight you.

Linking these up to my Valentine’s Day Link-Up!

*~Amanda aka Semi-Health Nut~*

Does baking and/or cooking mean more to you than just eating?

Linked up to:

Crumbs and Chaos
Time Warp Wife


Share Your Stuff Tuesdays with Erin at Table for Seven

Tasty Tuesdays with Anyonita Nibbles

Show and Share Wednesday with Kelly at Mostly Homemade Mom

Valentine’s Day Healthy Bake-Off with Davida at The Healthy Maven


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  1. Julia says

    Yum-o! I used to live in the Twin Cities! Do you love living there (maybe not with this crazy freeze)? I loved living there!

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