Part 3: Bars!
We eat A LOT of bars. They are the perfect snack, wrapped up nice and neat, usually with chocolate in or around them. We just love bars.
The cost of bars adds up. Sometimes we will eat more than one a day. I drive around all day for my job, and a bar is a jiffy little snack that’s easy to eat while driving and staves off the hunger cravings in between meals. Mint Chocolate Builder’s Bars by Cliff Bar are my FAVORITES!
I’ve tried to pick different snacks: veggies, cheese, nuts, etc. And while we do eat other snacks, the truth is that everyone in my family prefers bars, and at some point, I stop fighting against it.
And instead I think…how can I save money and have my family still enjoy their favorite snack?
Make your own! But they have to actually be good.
Here’s what I did. After trying many recipes, I decided I loved these
They are soooo simple, and you can add whatever you like into them.
Now, once I made these, I thought I had declared victory over the $500/wk in bars problem. (Just kidding we don’t spend quite that much on bars, but we do spend a lot.)
Anyway, I was WRONG!
The pan of bars were gone THE SAME DAY.
I felt defeated, but I wasn’t ready to give up. Thus began a series of failed attempts to make these bars last an appropriate amount of time and therefore save money.
I decided to pre cut them so that people wouldn’t reach their sticky hands inside the fridge and rip off huge pieces to stuff into their mouths…nope. They just grabbed pre cut piece after pre-cut piece.
I decided to wrap them in plastic wrap so that they were more like a store bought bar one had to open…again, nope. Bars were unwrapped and eaten late at night and throughout the day, much the same way as before.
Seriously, does it have to be so hard? Why can’t I make a big batch of homemade bars on Sunday, and have them last throughout the week? How crappy I feel when I make them, and we are back to buying bars at the store by Tuesday?!
Here’s what I ended up doing: first, I had a heart to heart with my clan. I let them know that we had to show a little self restraint. Then, I calculated how much I would need to make in order for everyone to have one, nice-sized bar per day (cutting them smaller does not make them last longer in our house). I figured out I could double the recipe (I use 2 cups of honey and add a bit more oats until I find the right consistency). On Sunday, I made PLENTY, cut them up, wrapped them, and made a stack for each day of the week, complete with a piece of tape on each one with the day of the week (let’s not leave room for ANY confusion here). I stacked them by day into the refrigerator.
Guess what…it worked. I guess that when we know we have bars in the fridge, and that we are allowed one every day, we find that it’s…enough. If we wanted more than one, than we had an apple instead.
Cost comparison: I spend roughly $25 for 28 bars (4 people eating one, 7 days a week). We were buying Cliff Builder’s Bars (did I mention the mint-chocolate one is to die for?) A box of 12 is $15. You know how long 12 bars lasts for us? If you can do the math, then you do. Yeah…I’m saving money this way people.
I’ve added chocolate chips, nuts, shredded coconut…you can add whatever you want.
Your family might not be as neurotic as mine is with bars. You may not even need to pre-cut them or individually wrap each one up and label them with the day of the week!
You do what works for YOUR family.
For our family, this is a money saver.