February 23, 2015

homemade granola bars

Yum
dark chocolate coconut granola bars shown

I have made these multiple times and they never disappoint, so I figured it was time to share this recipe with you.  There are so many different combinations of flavors you can make, and I have given you a few ideas to get you started. :)

PS... If you have to pack a snack for your child at school... these are perfect!  After cutting them, I put them in snack sized baggies and store them in the cabinet, making them a quick go to each morning. 

Servings makes 16 bars
Total Time 40 minutes

INGREDIENTS
  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1 cup sliced or slivered almonds
  • 1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut, loosely packed
  • 1/2 cup wheat germ (optional)
  • 2/3 cup honey or maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil (optional)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon course salt
  • 1 1/2 cups dried fruit or dark chocolate chips
Optional Add-ins:
  • ground flax seeds
  • chia seeds
  • pumpkin seeds
  • walnuts
  • sunflower seeds
  • almond extract instead of vanilla
INSTRUCTIONS

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

2.  In a large bowl add the honey, vanilla, salt, and dried fruit.  Stir until combined.

4.  On a baking sheet toss the oats, almonds, and coconut together.  Bake for 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned.  Reduce the heat to 300 degrees F.

5.  While the mixture is still warm, transfer to the bowl along with the wheat germ, and stir until well combined.

fruit and nut granola bars shown
6.  Pour the mixture into a 8x12 inch baking dish that has been covered with parchment paper (or you can grease with butter).  Use wet fingers, an oiled spatula, or (the best way in my opinion) spray the outside of a sandwich baggie with oil and then use it like a glove, to press into the dish.

7.  Bake for 25 minutes.  Remove from the oven and let cool for 2-3 hours.

dark chocolate coconut granola bars shown
8.  Using a sharp serrated knife cut into squares.  Enjoy!!!

**They will stay for a week or two store in an airtight container at room temperature.  If you prefer you may want to store them in the fridge and they will stay crisp.**

UPDATE-

I went to go grab a granola bar this morning, as I headed out to volunteer in my son's class, and realized they were gone!:(  So much for breakfast on the go.  So... knowing that I needed some more, I thought I'd try a different combination.  After finding 3 mostly empty bags of nuts in my cabinet and a half bag of mixed berries I figured I could come up with something delicious.


Fruit and nut granola bars.  They are just as good as they look!  I used a dried fruit mix that had cherries in it, chia seeds, pumpkin seeds, almonds, walnuts, and sunflower seeds.  Oh and half honey, half maple syrup.  Just another idea for you! :)



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