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Eat Well Oct. 1. 2013
Desserts

Pumpkin Spiced Nut & Seed Bars

Oct. 1. 2013
Desserts
McKel Hill

McKel Hill

MS, RDN, LDN, Dietitian

How long did you all think I could last without having pumpkin in my recipes here at Nutrition Stripped? I was trying my best to let the month of September and all the buzz around pumpkin spiced lattes to cool down before sharing recipes and fully welcoming the fall season with the beloved pumpkin! Let’s join the crowd and fully embrace fall with autumnal flavors of pumpkin and pumpkin spice in these Pumpkin Spiced Nut & Seed Bars! Oh, and Happy Vegetarian Awareness Month!

Pumpkin is such an amazing ingredient to use in cooking, baking, puddings, dips, etc., it’s very versatile with it’s flavor and texture. These Pumpkin Spiced Nut & Seed Bars are perfect for an on the go snack, a healthy treat, or even for Halloween/holiday parties this season.

These bars not only taste like fall in your mouth, but are also nutrient dense, high in vitamins, healthy fats, fiber, protein and are mineral rich (things most of our diets don’t et enough of out of a snack). I promise I won’t go pumpkin crazy and post every recipe with pumpkin in it, but fair warning it’ll be here for the next couple of months (wink, wink). I’ll go more in detail about why I think pumpkin is so great nutritionally speaking in a future post that highlight pumpkin even more!

Nut allergy // If you have a peanut allergy, simply use almond butter or another nut butter in place of the peanut butter. Also if you’re allergic to any other nut in this mix, swap it out for another nut or more seeds that are more friendly to your body!

Pumpkin Spiced Nut & Seed Bars
Recipe Type: snack, small plates
Author: McKel Hill, MS, RD, LDN
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 10
A protein packed nut and seed bar filled with the flavors of pumpkin and spices of fall.
Ingredients
  • 1 cup almonds, raw and unsalted
  • ½ cup pumpkin seeds, raw and unsalted
  • ½ cup sunflower seeds, raw and unsalted
  • 1/2 cup organic peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup organic pumpkin puree
  • ¼ cup brazil nuts, raw and unsalted
  • ¼ cup amaranth (optional)
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup local honey
  • 1 Tablespoon of pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • pinch of sea salt to taste
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a saucepan, bring maple syrup, pumpkin puree, and peanut butter to a simmer and immediately take of heat. Stir until this mixture is well combined.
  3. Combine the nuts and seeds in a separate mixing bowl.
  4. Pour the liquid mixture over the nuts and seeds and stir until thoroughly coated.
  5. Using a lined or silicone square edged pan, spread the nut mixture in by pressing with your hands and compacting the mixture into the square pan evenly.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes.
  7. Keep an eye on this mixture, every oven setting is different and when toasting nuts and seeds they may burn very quickly!
  8. Take out of the oven and let cool.
  9. Keep in an airtight bag/container at room temperature for storing.
Serving size: 1 bar (1/10th recipe) Calories: 320 Fat: 20 Carbohydrates: 25 (net 20) Sugar: 12 Fiber: 5 Protein: 10
Notes
Note // you can make these into 20 servings and half the calories, by cutting each bar in half again.

Warning // Similar to my Spicy Sweet Nut & Seed Mix… these are addicting! Exercise willpower and self control when eating these, they’re that good.

What are your favorite ways to use pumpkin in the fall season? Share below! Better yet, if you have an idea of a Halloween dish that you’d like to see “made over” into a healthier version, let me know so I can re-create it here!

Now off to enjoy these bars, have a beautiful day everyone!

xo McKel

The Recipe

Serves 10

Print

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup almonds, raw and unsalted
  • ½ cup pumpkin seeds, raw and unsalted
  • ½ cup sunflower seeds, raw and unsalted
  • 1/2 cup organic peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup organic pumpkin puree
  • ¼ cup brazil nuts, raw and unsalted
  • ¼ cup amaranth (optional)
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup local honey
  • 1 Tablespoon of pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • pinch of sea salt to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a saucepan, bring maple syrup, pumpkin puree, and peanut butter to a simmer and immediately take of heat. Stir until this mixture is well combined.
  3. Combine the nuts and seeds in a separate mixing bowl.
  4. Pour the liquid mixture over the nuts and seeds and stir until thoroughly coated.
  5. Using a lined or silicone square edged pan, spread the nut mixture in by pressing with your hands and compacting the mixture into the square pan evenly.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes.
  7. Keep an eye on this mixture, every oven setting is different and when toasting nuts and seeds they may burn very quickly!
  8. Take out of the oven and let cool.
  9. Keep in an airtight bag/container at room temperature for storing.

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  • Pumpkin bread and pumpkin pie smoothies! 🙂 It’s not necessarily a Halloween dish, but is it possible to make a healthier version of a pumpkin bread/cream cheese roll?

    • Those sound delicious, and a couple of my favorites as well! Yes, there is… stay tuned this month and into the month of November as I make some pumpkin recipes just like that 😉

  • Kymelle

    Hi there, I have just discovered your blog and can’t wait to make some of your recipes. I live in Australia and have never come across ‘Pumpkin Pie spice’ before. We tend to use pumpkin in mostly savoury dishes. I assume it is a mix of spices? Could you tell me what is in it? Many thanks!

    • Hi Kymelle! Great question, pumpkin pie spice is basically a mix of cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, all spice, and ginger. Thanks for stopping by and I hope you come again 🙂

    • Evan williams

      I just used nutmeg and it tastes great!

      • McKel Hill

        Glad you enjoyed it Evan!

  • These look great! I’m definitely going to try these for Thanksgiving!
    Thanks for sharing,
    Victoria

    • Wonderful! I’m glad you’ve found something to make for the holidays, they’ll be a hit! Thanks for stopping by and I hope you come back soon 🙂

  • Just discovered your blog and I’m already a huge fan! I’ve been developing a recipe for fruit sweetened pumpkin spice cookies that I hope I can photograph so they look as delicious as these. 🙂

    • Hi Rachel, thank you very much! Ooo those cookies sound amazing, I can’t wait for them. Thanks for stopping by and I hope you come back soon 🙂

  • I was wondering when to add in the amaranth and such and what substitutions you would recommend if I don’t have it. Thank you!

    • Hi Samantha! The amaranth goes in with all the nuts/seeds- it’s an optional ingredient so you don’t have to use it 🙂

  • Darlene

    Hi McKel, I’m about to make your Pumpkin Spiced Nut & Seed Bars. Should the almonds, and Brazil nuts be roughly chopped? Also, if using Amaranth, should it be cooked first before adding to the nut/seed mixture?
    Thanks!

    • Hi Darlene,
      You can chop the almonds and brazil nuts however coarse you enjoy- I like a rough chop so it leaves chunks. The amaranth isn’t cooked before hand. Hope you enjoy!

  • Connie Hockens

    I made the pumpkin spiced nut & seed bars this date. I followed the receipe exactly however it was not explained if the pan should be greased so I decieded to us parchment paper. The other issue was I baked them for 25 minutes as they seemed not cooked thru. I cooled them for 20 minutes and then proceeded to cut into bars.

    The bars seem to still have a softness to them versus crisp after cooling. Did I make an error or is this the way the bar is intended?
    That you for a reply

    • Hi Connie, these bars are similar to a “dried” granola bar- pretty crunchy with crumble versus being soft. It could be that there was too much pumpkin or a little bit more moisture, or we always have to remember that our oven settings can be different. Otherwise, just let them cool and they’re good to go. When all else fails, you can crumbled these up into a cereal- no waste! 😉

  • Donna E.

    Does this really need to be baked? I’d love to keep the nuts and seeds raw, but wonder whether it will set up properly. If it’s just a matter of removing excess moisture, I wonder if I could finish them in the dehydrator instead of the oven.

    • You can definitely use a dehydrator! Most don’t own them so baking is the best option to remove excess moisture and make them firm. I’d love to hear how they turn out using the dehydrator Donna 🙂

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