As I sit here after the Thanksgiving holiday, I am reminded again how much I really do have, but also how much I tend to take for granted. As we enjoy these special times with our family and friends, let's remember that there is always something to be grateful for even when darkness comes our way.  In today's world, life can change in an instant so I try and be thankful every day for what I have right now. When we can appreciate the little things in life, we tend to look at life with a much more positive outlook. So, from Kristy, Debbie, & Michael at Starting Out Raw, we want to tell you how thankful we are that you take the time to look at our recipes and watch our videos. We appreciate your kind and supporting words you have given to us over the last couple of years. I would have never guessed that after being diagnosed with cancer, we would one day be doing a raw food show. I am so grateful that something which was so dark in my life, turned out to be such a help to others as we share our stories, recipes, and whatever else we may learn in our journey of healthy living.

Now to our recipe for this week! I've been making these bars for a couple months now and they definitely are a huge winner in my home. I probably make these bars twice a week as I love to take some each day along with my green smoothie to work for lunch. They are super easy to make and I usually make them in the evening, put them in the refrigerator, and they are done and ready to go in the morning. Half of the ingredients I melt in a double boiler. then I mix the rest of the ingredients right in the same pan so you're basically only dirtying one dish. You can easily add in some chocolate chips (as Kristy likes to do) or some other of your favorites but don't add too much extras as it might become too dry. You want to enjoy the chocolate of these bars. For the chocolate, I use one ounce of a 100% raw cacao bar which equals two squares. I get my bars at our local health food stores. Make sure they are unsweetened! I also mix up my nut butters, and my favorite so far has been raw cashew butter mixed with a little tahini. You can use any nut butter but each one will make for a different flavor of the bar. We hope you enjoy these bars as much as we do!

Chocolate Oatmeal Bars

Makes one 7x7 pan or you can use a larger pan if you like your bars thinner.


1/2 cup nut butter ( my favorite is raw cashew butter mixed with a little tahini)

1/4 cup pure maple syrup (we use grade B)

1/4 cup coconut oil

1 oz. chocolate (from a 100% raw cacao bar which equals two squares)

1 cup oats

1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut

1t vanilla (we used vanilla powder)

1/3 cup raisins

1/8 cup chopped pecans


Add your raw cacao bar, coconut oil, nut butter, and maple syrup to a double boiler until everything is blended together. Take off of heat and add in the rest of your ingredients. Mix until blended. Transfer to a pan and place in the refrigerator to set. If you want to eat these quickly, you can put the pan in the freezer for a few minutes to set and then transfer to your refrigerator. Store in the refrigerator.