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Blueberry Crumb Bars + A Dilemma

Some of you might know this but I didn’t get my start with blogging on Peanut Butter Runner. I actually had my food/recipe blog, Bakin’ & Eggs, for two years before launching Peanut Butter Runner. I posted recipes there 3-5 times a week. I started PBR because I was constantly asked how I could bake and cook like I did and stay in shape. At the time I was also starting to get more into pursuing fitness certifications so a healthy living blog made sense. My intention was never to give up Bakin’ & Eggs but as PBR took off and I became busy with my career transition, it feel to the wayside.

I originally didn’t want to combine the blogs because I thought it would be “neater” to keep them separate. I also didn’t want to feel pressured to only post healthy recipes because I love baking, sweets and enjoying and cooking indulgent food from time to time. I didn’t know how my Bacon Wrapped Cheese Stuffed ChickenΒ would fly over here! πŸ˜‰

But now I’m faced with a dilemma. I want to blog recipes, but where? Do I pick Bakin’ & Eggs back up and post a couple of recipes per week over there or do I create a separate area of Peanut Butter Runner that is devoted to recipes and keep it all under one roof? Β To explain, the recipes would be on a separate page and not show up on the home page. Kind of like a blog within a blog. If I create a separate area of PBR, I want to migrate all of my recipes from Bakin’ & Eggs over and shut that site down. That sounds like a technical nightmare!

So, I’ll put it out to those who are impacted by it. What is easier for you? Separate or together? And if I do combine, would you be okay with a mix of healthy and not so healthy recipes?

While I figure all of this out, here is the recipe for the Blueberry Crumb Bars that I baked a couple of weeks ago. We are in the height of blueberry season and if you can get your hands on some freshly picked berries, this recipe will not disappoint!


Blueberry Crumb Bars
(Recipe adapted from Smitten Kitchen, originally from AllRecipes.com)

Ingredients:Β 

1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup very cold unsalted butter (1 stick)
1 egg
1/4 teaspoon salt
Zest and juice of half a lemon
2 cups fresh blueberries
1/4 cup white sugar
2 teaspoons cornstarch

Directions:Β 

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and prepare an 8 x 8 baking dish with butter or cooking spray.

Stir together 1/2 cup sugar, flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt and lemon zest. Cut the butter into small pieces and lightly beat the egg. Use two knives, a fork, your fingers or a pastry cutter and blend butter and egg into flour mixture.Β The dough will be crumbly. Pat half it into the prepared pan.

In another bowl, mix together remaining 1/4 cup sugar, cornstarch and lemon juice. Very gently mix in the berries and then sprinkle over the first layer of crust. Crumble remaining dough over berries and bake for 45 minutes in preheated oven. The top should be golden brown, you may need to increase baking time a bit depending on your oven.

Let cool and cut into squares. These store well in the fridge for several days.

Yield: 16 bars

{ 69 comments… add one }
  • 1
    Cynthia July 24, 2012, 9:09 pm

    Combine them!! I love seeing your healthy recipes and workout tips. But I wouldn’t mind seeing some indulgent recipes as well.

  • 2
    Hillary July 24, 2012, 9:10 pm

    Combination!! even if it’s not the “blog within a blog” and showing both the indulgent and healthy recipes on the home page!

  • 3
    Heather C July 24, 2012, 9:15 pm

    Combine them – sounds easier πŸ™‚ well at least after the migration of the recipes it might be easier πŸ˜‰

    Those bars look to die for; putting on list for the husband’s ‘snacks’

    hope you’re week is going well so far! πŸ™‚

  • 4
    Sherry July 24, 2012, 9:16 pm

    I say combine them. I love seeing all areas of your life fitness health related or not!

  • 5
    Rebecca July 24, 2012, 9:22 pm

    Definatly combine them! It will be so much easier for us readers plus I’d assume it would be easier for you to keep track of with just one blog?

  • 6
    LeAnne July 24, 2012, 9:23 pm

    Keep them all together! No need to worry about it…besides, healthy living is all about balance, and there is NOTHING wrong with having some indulgent treats here and there! πŸ™‚ Fitness, food, life…it’s all good..I enjoy reading it all!

  • 7
    Lindsay July 24, 2012, 9:31 pm

    I’d say keep them all together…I find that when people try to maintain two blogs, I end up just picking one of them and not going to the other very much. But i’m all about a mi of healthy and NOT so healthy recipes….let’s face it…those are the more fun ones to read πŸ™‚

  • 8
    Shannon July 24, 2012, 9:31 pm

    Hey Jen!
    I read everyday and utilize your Bakin’ and Eggs site, too! I make the red wine chicken ALL the time! My suggestion/request as a reader would be to bring all recipes (even the not-so-healthy ones) over to this blog and use the Recipage tool that Emily over at Daily Garnish put together. I think it’s free (?) and it is SO well organized! I love the blogs I check out that use it. And you could just note if a recipe is healthy or not.
    I’m excited for the change! You are very good at evolving and moving forward, with your blog and in life!
    Keep inspiring!

    Shannon

  • 9
    Brittany @ GOtheXtraMile July 24, 2012, 9:33 pm

    I think you should combine them. It’s a lot easier on you and on readers to have it all under one roof. And of course have a mix of healthy and not so healthy! Life’s all about balance πŸ˜‰

  • 10
    Ashley July 24, 2012, 9:34 pm

    Combine them!

  • 11
    Kimberly July 24, 2012, 9:41 pm

    I agree with everyone else…combine the two!
    PS – definitely saw you at Y2 today, but was too shy to say hello! I still haven’t gotten use to seeing a fellow blogger in public! Silly me!

  • 12
    Sara Berry July 24, 2012, 9:57 pm

    I think you should do whatever is easiest for you, but I see no problem combining them. I personally LOVE the fact that you are so committed to fitness and healthy living while also recognizing that life – and health – are about BALANCE. I’d even go so far as to say there’s no such thing as a “not-so-healthy recipe.” There are unhealthy OVERALL diets, but there’s no reason why you can’t enjoy some recipes that are higher in sugar and/or fat (or gluten, or whatever the dietary demon du jour may be) in moderation as part of a generally healthy diet.

    One of the things I love most about your blog is that it’s REAL – it’s YOUR experience. And if you enjoy eating salads sometimes and scrambles sometimes and sweets sometimes, why shouldn’t your blog reflect that? (Plus it’s just not right NOT to share really yummy baked goods recipes!) πŸ™‚

  • 13
    Lauren C July 24, 2012, 9:57 pm

    I’m all for you combining the two blogs! I think an important part of healthy living is balance, so featuring healthy and indulgent recipes makes sense.

  • 14
    Christina July 24, 2012, 10:00 pm

    Do whatever is easiest for you! (although I’d be sad to see Bakin’ and Eggs retired, if for no other reason than the fact that it’s such a clever name!!!) I love your recipes (your spinach and mozzerella stuffed meatloaf is one of my favorites, and my husband lives and dies by the Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip bars) and will continue to enjoy them regardless of where they are housed!

  • 15
    Sarah D July 24, 2012, 10:08 pm

    I think a mix of healthy and indulgent recipes IS healthy and a part of living well πŸ™‚ I say combine them!

  • 16
    Katrina July 24, 2012, 10:23 pm

    combine! i don’t mind blogs that talk about all sorts of things at all. the posts are all from the same person, that’s enough of a theme!

  • 17
    Joanna July 24, 2012, 10:28 pm

    I think we all should be able to decipher the ones that are for fuel vs. pleasure. I think it fits into a blog about health that people can know it is okay to eat things that are not particularly health food but still be healthy! Hence why I put beer into the title of my blog πŸ™‚ Living healthy is a balance and blueberry crumb bars fit!!

  • 18
    Marli July 24, 2012, 10:38 pm

    I started first reading Bakin’ and Eggs but haven’t clicked on it in months. I do very much miss the recipes and think it would be great for you to combine them. I don’t think anyone would think it was a sin to post indulgent recipes.

  • 19
    Sarah N. July 24, 2012, 11:01 pm

    I don’t mind reading a separate site, but if you want to combine blogs that’s great too! One of the reasons I was drawn to your blogs in the first place was how balanced you are between being extremely healthy and allowing yourself to indulge in the treats. I love that, and I don’t think there’s enough of it out there!

    One of my favorite meals is the Spiced Chicken I found on Bakin’ and Eggs! =)

  • 20
    Sarah M July 24, 2012, 11:24 pm

    I don’t see why you shouldn’t combine them and who cares if they show up on the homepage? It’s your blog – do it however you want to! Personally I see nothing wrong with a healthy living blog showing some not-so-healthy options. I think a healthy part of life is doing the things that make you happy and sometimes that manifests itself as bacony, cheesy chicken! πŸ™‚

  • 21
    molly July 24, 2012, 11:54 pm

    Combine them…I am new to your blog and I love it!!

  • 22
    Lisa July 25, 2012, 12:03 am

    I think it would be a good idea to combine the both of them. I love reading about workouts and recipes, so I don’t mind you posting recipes over here at all πŸ™‚
    Those look super delicious!!

  • 23
    Elizabeth July 25, 2012, 12:28 am

    Why don’t you just post the recipes on the home page and make a “recipage” to file them under? I’m not sure how you do it, but I’ve seen other people with recipages, and that way readers would only have to check one place.

  • 24
    Amy July 25, 2012, 12:52 am

    Combine! I think a healthy lifestyle definitely includes some treats. πŸ™‚

  • 25
    brandee July 25, 2012, 3:52 am

    Combine! I think it’s great to have a balance between healthy and fun recipes! Hopefully it isn’t too hard to merge the two blogs! And the recipe looks great…I just bought blueberries so I can’t wait to try it.

  • 26
    Cath July 25, 2012, 4:14 am

    I agree, combine them! I go to both sites anyway. I love the mix of getting an awesome sweat on and relishing a bit of dessert.

    Just wondering, did you freeze most of the 16 squares or give them away? Or somehow leave them in the fridge and not eat them all at once? I know I couldn’t leave them lying around! πŸ™‚ I often end up eating most of my baking so I have to bake less often and freeze more of it.

  • 27
    Vanessa July 25, 2012, 5:04 am

    Combine them!

  • 28
    Sophie July 25, 2012, 5:20 am

    Your mantra seems to be all about balance, which I think you do really well.
    Your cooking and baking, healthy or not, accumulates to a healthy lifestyle. Therefore it seems natural that you combine them. If you integrated the two you it would be a lot more streamlined. You could focus all your energy in a united page.

  • 29
    Courtney July 25, 2012, 7:32 am

    First of all, I have made the blueberry crumb bars posted on Smitten Kitchen may times (once with blackberries) and they are fantastic!

    Second, I think occasional indulgent foods are part of healthy living, so I’d vote to incorporate Bakin and Eggs into PBR.

  • 30
    Julia July 25, 2012, 7:40 am

    It would be some much easier to have them combined! There is no problem with indulgent recipes on peanut butter runner! Healthy lifestyles are about balance. Balance includes treating yourself. There is no reason you can’t share those delicious indulgences on here!

  • 31
    Holly July 25, 2012, 7:52 am

    I vote for combining them. It will take some work and planning but can be done. I believe there are automatic plugins you could use to migrate the B&E posts over here. Then you may want to redirect the B&E feed and/or put a message on the homepage that B&E readers should come to PBR. Probably do that for a while before shutting down so you don’t lose anyone.

    Also, Katy Widrick has written about how you can create custom feed channels for your blog so that subscribers can just subscribe to one topic if they choose. I think she did it thru Feedburner. I don’t use it so I can’t help with specifics. I’m not sure if it can be done another way or not. I have seen bloggers categorize posts with a Tag that then is also a Dropdown from the menu bar… so you click that and all you will see are the posts under that Tab. Not sure if you can just subscribe to a Tab or not.

    Good luck!

  • 32
    Lauren K July 25, 2012, 8:02 am

    Definitely combine them! Who can really eat healthy all the time? I work out to enjoy the good stuff! Plus, that’s part of the reason I love your blog…you make some incredible food. Had fun last night!

  • 33
    Danielle @ clean food creative fitness July 25, 2012, 8:05 am

    Just my opinion but do whatever is easiest for you!!! I think it is great to show on your site that recipes don’t have to be healthy 100% of the time! Post whatever you please!!! I love your site either way πŸ™‚

  • 34
    Cristen July 25, 2012, 8:16 am

    As long as I have access to the old posts somewhere, I am a happy girl. I am constantly referring to Bakin & Eggs for the chewy, enchiladas, fish tacks, etc!

  • 35
    Bess @ Bess Be Fit July 25, 2012, 8:25 am

    Combine if it’s easier! I love recipes of all kinds, indulgent or healthy πŸ™‚ it’s all about the balance and I think you are able to show that better than anyone! In the best shape but have a sweet tooth too….and I really really really wanna make these blueberry bars asap. OMG yum.

  • 36
    Erica { EricaDHouse.com } July 25, 2012, 8:29 am

    I vote to combine and start posting healthy recipes here. I’d love to see some from you and I think it would mix nicely with your healthy lifestyle posts … no need to bog yourself down with two separate blogs!

  • 37
    Becca B July 25, 2012, 8:30 am

    combine them! just like life, it is all about balance, so post healthy and indulgent recipes! If someone is really concerned, they could always just tweak it to make it healthier, inspiration is inspiration whether you follow the recipe to the T or not!

  • 38
    Sarah A. July 25, 2012, 8:35 am

    I say combine them. I’ve been bummed not to see recipes on Bakin & Eggs lately, so if combining the two means more recipes, please do it! I also like the idea of having both on one site – makes navigation easy and you can link to the recipe in your blog post without having to post the whole recipe on the home page.

    Plus, it seems like it would be easier for you πŸ˜‰

  • 39
    russg July 25, 2012, 8:40 am

    Combine the daily blogs and add a ‘Recipe’ button (and possibly some categories under Recipe) to the menu across the top.

  • 40
    Clara July 25, 2012, 8:55 am

    You should really do whatever is best for you buuuuut I’m joining the masses and saying, combine them! And I actually really appreciate that you post both healthy and indulgent recipes, it feels more balanced and is one of the reasons I love your blog and philosophy so much. xx

  • 41
    Donna July 25, 2012, 8:58 am

    I think you should totally combine them! I love Bakin and Eggs and I still check every once in a while for recipes! I love that you have “normal” recipes and not all “healthy” – lets face it, we gotta indulge every once in a while!!

  • 42
    Nicole July 25, 2012, 9:11 am

    Definitely combine! I want to see everything together. Working out, food, whatever!

  • 43
    gmruns July 25, 2012, 9:14 am

    I vote all in one spot. Even if they arent all the most healthy recipes who cares! We all need to indulge from time to time πŸ™‚

  • 44
    Ann July 25, 2012, 9:34 am

    I say combine for I am lazy and now I can enjoy everything at one site. Who cares if there are some indulgent recipes in there. Let’s all enjoy life! πŸ™‚

  • 45
    Emily July 25, 2012, 9:47 am

    Together! Not only would it be easy on you but these days I’m used to checking this blog, not your other one. And life is about balance….you can be healthy and fit and still indulge at times.

  • 46
    Audrey @ Healthy Auds N' Ends July 25, 2012, 10:10 am

    Repeating what so many others had advised, I’d say to do whatever is most convenient for you! I know that for me, I don’t have a problem with going back and forth between sites as long as the link is provided for certain recipes; but then again, that would require the creator of the website to constantly keep posting links, whereas having everything in one place might make it a bit easier!

    And I definitely love the mix of healthy and not-as-healthy recipes! C’mon, I’m not looking to bake healthy ALL the time! πŸ˜‰

  • 47
    Marty McGuigan July 25, 2012, 10:20 am

    I agree with so many others above…I’d vote combine the sites and include both the healthy and indulgent recipies…hopefully everyone allows themselves a cheat day here and there!

  • 48
    Lindsey July 25, 2012, 10:47 am

    Definitely combine! You could do “heathy eats” and “guilty pleasures.” Haha!

    There is probably an easy way to combine your blogs, if you have computer savy friends, ask for tips!

  • 49
    Ashley July 25, 2012, 11:09 am

    Combine Combine Combine! πŸ™‚ I think it would be a wonderful collaboration within PBR. As wonderful as it is to maintain a healthy lifestyle with whole foods, I think it’s also important to splurge every once in awhile. You have wonderful and creative recipes to share! I think the readership that follows PBR would love to see the Bakin’ and Eggs recipes if they haven’t already.

  • 50
    Christine July 25, 2012, 11:21 am

    I’m on the “combine” side — you make it clear on PBR that your life is all about balance, so why not have it all on one blog. I LOVE your Bakin and Eggs recipes and would be happy to see the healthy and not-so-healthy ones on PBR.

  • 51
    hollie July 25, 2012, 11:28 am

    i say combine. all in one place sounds good to me!
    also, i think all recipes are fabulous- to me health is about balance, not never eating sweets. it is nice to see someone like yourself so involved in health and fitness indulging in all foods- life is too short to not have cake. or bacon wrapped chicken! πŸ™‚

  • 52
    Linda July 25, 2012, 12:27 pm

    Combine them for sure. You have great recipes, workouts, and really set an example for living life in balance. I personally don’t know what I would do without a good glass of red wine!

  • 53
    Julie July 25, 2012, 12:38 pm

    Healthy living is about balance, not deprivation. So I say combine the blogs and include a mix of healthy and indulgent recipes.

  • 54
    Katelyn July 25, 2012, 1:34 pm

    I agree with most everyone else, combine them on here. I’d be interested in any recipe you make, even the not so healthy ones πŸ™‚

  • 55
    Taylor July 25, 2012, 4:14 pm

    i LOVED bakin ‘n eggs!!! i would love to see a combo of the two sites! im sure it would be easier for you and for the readers to see it all under one domain name, but im just excited to hear of a revival of your recipes! good luck πŸ™‚

  • 56
    Kelly July 25, 2012, 4:47 pm

    Combine them for sure! It’s great to cook healthy, but let’s be real it doesn’t ALWAYS have to be – balance, balance, balance!

  • 57
    Joy July 25, 2012, 5:07 pm

    I’m all for you combining them. And I don’t think you would even have to have a separate page for the recipes, whether they’re “healthy” recipes or not. As others have said, it’s all about the balance.

  • 58
    Diane July 25, 2012, 6:18 pm

    I think combining them would be great and easier for you and the reader!!
    Hope all is well!

  • 59
    Nancy July 25, 2012, 7:19 pm

    I’m just glad the recipes are coming back! :). Love your recipes. I also think you should combine. It would take more work up front, but ultimately I think it would be easier & more streamlined.

  • 60
    Sarah July 25, 2012, 9:00 pm

    I agree that combining them would be great, πŸ™‚

  • 61
    jeannie July 25, 2012, 10:13 pm

    I think combining them is a great idea! You could even make suggestions of how to make your not so healthy recipes healthier?

  • 62
    Corrie Anne July 26, 2012, 1:32 am

    totally mix it up!!!!! we want to see it all!

  • 63
    Katie July 26, 2012, 2:44 am

    I think you should definitly combine them!! You are a great role model for a healthy lifestyle, but I also think it is important for people to realize that a heathly lifestyle is about balance and moderation. Health fanatics, like us, can still include in our favorite things from time to time without feeling guilty! It’s nice to see someone as fit as you doing the same!

  • 64
    Amy July 26, 2012, 6:15 am

    combine them! I think it will show how balanced your life is, and simplify your crazy life!

  • 65
    natalie@thesweetslife July 26, 2012, 9:14 am

    i don’t mind if they’re combined at all! i think it would go a long way in showing that how truly well rounded and balanced you are!! body pump with a side of cookies, my kind of girl!

    i’ve made these bars–they’re delish!

  • 66
    Kelli Preston July 26, 2012, 11:35 am

    I say combine them! I love how balanced your life appears-it is one of the main reasons I visit your blog. I love seeing people living healthy without subscribing to any one particular diet.

    Those bars look amaze!

  • 67
    Tanya July 26, 2012, 12:39 pm

    I didn’t have time to post on this at first and I saw you are going to combine the sites. excellent news! I was going to beg for you to keep Bakin’ & eggs open for a while so I can go print my favorites. I go there from time to time and it’s quicker sometimes to pull it up than shuffle thru my hundreds of printed recipes. so glad you will combine them!

  • 68
    Jessika July 27, 2012, 6:25 pm

    i’m jumping on the band wagon and saying combine them! I personally struggle between sharing healthy recipes and not so healthy recipes and find that I leave out anything not so healthy as I’m trying to leave a good impression for my followers. BUT I also think it’s healthy and to be honest a little refreshing to have a balance… I follow blogs to be inspired and see what others are doing to stay in shape and I always get excited when I see people who have figured out how to have the best of both worlds. just my two cents.. plus I like to find everything I want on one page πŸ™‚

  • 69
    jess September 1, 2014, 11:22 am

    Can you sub all purpose flour for almond meal or coconut flour?

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