Gigi’s Chocolate Chip, Pecan, Coconut and Cranberry Bars

The quarantine has me baking up a storm, well more like cookie bars, pies, cakes and the like. Having my grandkids living with us makes it so easy to bake sweet treats, so after homeschooling they always expects Gigi to have a treat ready. Now let me be honest it’s not easy on my waistline, but I just do more yoga in the evenings. We also make the baking a part of our curriculum. I like to call it, Home Economics, you guys remember that in school? These bars are so easy to make and they came about, because I had some condensed coconut milk in my pantry and was trying to decide what to do with it. I had no idea how they would turn out, but the family absolutely loved them.

The thing about bars are you can add anything you like to them, as long as you have a nice cookie base, you can top it with walnuts instead of pecan, you can add raisins, different types of candies, like M&Ms, Reese’s mini peanut butter cups, whatever your heart’s desire. I know will be making these again for my family and I am sure everyone will have something to say about what we add to the next cookie bar. Enjoy the recipe, keep it creative and always remember to Set the Table with Love.

Ingredients:

Crust:

  • 1 cup butter (cold and cubed)
  • 1/3 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 1/4 cup all purpose flour

Filling:

  • 1 package semisweet chocolate chips
  • 2 cups coarsely chopped pecans
  • 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 can of condensed coconut milk

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350.
Add butter, sugar, and flour to a large bowl and use a fork to bring ingredients together into pea sized crumbs.
Press evenly into a greased 9×13″ pan lined with parchment paper. 
Bake 12 minutes. Remove form oven and allow to cool down for a few minutes. Sprinkle chocolate chips, pecans, shredded coconut, and cranberries over cooked crust. 
Pour coconut condensed milk evenly over the top. 
Bake 15-18 minutes. Allow to cool before cutting into bars. 
Store covered at room temperature.

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Hi Guys. A little bit about me: The Jewels first, then the Profession: THE JEWELS: I have been married to the love of her life and kidney transplant donor, Joseph for twenty-five years. We have two sons, Julian Bernard thirty -three years old, Tyler nineteen years old and two beautiful grandchildren Naleyla, nine years old and a six-year grandson, Michael Julian. My life mantra is, " No matter what life brings, live your dreams short or long." HERE'S WHAT I KNOW: I understand what life feels like, when you have no idea if you will see your children grow up or never see the face of your grandkids. I was born with kidney disease and battled for almost 40 years until my husband of now, 25 years donated his kidney to me. Living a balance life, physically, mentally and spiritually was never an option for me to entertain. My life depends on it. I wrote this blog to share my journey and maybe touch the lives of those around me. My husband's generosity and the power of the grace of God has given me a second chance at life. I have been in and out of the hospitals all my life, came out of a coma, had multiple surgeries. I understand the importance of a positive mind. I have lost two babies and my mom, brother and grandmother in just months of each other. I want to share inspiration what inspires me to live and enjoy life each day. I have been a devoted yoga and meditation practitioner and a nutrition wellness coach for over 25 years, this was my road to staying as healthy as possible with failing kidneys and all the complications that come with it. I am grateful to share my life with you, through my food, my yoga and meditation practice, and just good old positivity. I hope my posts will bring joy to your heart, soul and tummy. THE PROFESSION: I am the the CEO of B'Tyli Wellness and Beauty Co. I created this company after I finished my studies in Holistic Nutrition and Medicine from Clayton College of Natural Health. B'Tyli Wellness and Beauty Co. is a holistic wellness company specializing in body, mind and spirit alignment, through yoga, nutrition, meditation and organic skin and body care products. I am the author of three books, a healthy lifestyle cookbook, titled, Set the Table with Love, which was named after my blog page and two inspirational mediation books, titled, Living With The Silver Lining and Whispers of Silence. I am also a Health, Wellness and Beauty Expert and has had the honor to share my culinary perspective o Food Network's second season of All-Star Academy food competition for a two month. I have shared my approach to healthy living and eating in both medias of television and radio. She has been featured on Fox 5, Good Day Atlanta, 11 Alive, Atlanta and Company, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, as well as radio, V103 and 104.7 The Fish and several magazine publications

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