A few weeks ago I posted a recipe for homemade granola, so it’s no surprise that I decided to make granola bars, right?
My husband has been leaving for work early for meetings lately, so he has been requesting a breakfast he can grab and take with him. Loose granola lacks the convenience factor you get with granola bars, so I obliged and made two different bar flavors — peanut butter chocolate chip and banana blueberry with toasted coconut. After a few tweaks, I’m now very happy with the results — perfectly chewy, crunchy, slightly sweet, and nutritious!
These granola bars do not require baking, so they come together quickly. Just 10 minutes of prep work and 10 to 15 minutes in the freezer, and you’re ready to cut them into bars.
For this recipe I used peanuts, but you could easily substitute those out for another nut you prefer. I also included raw pumpkin seeds and Chia seeds for bonus nutrients, but you could also use raw sunflower seeds, hemp seeds, etc. Just make sure you keep the volumes the same, because otherwise the ratio of dry to wet ingredients will be off and your bars will either be too gooey or too crumbly.
- 1½ cups oats
- 1¼ cups rice cereal
- ¼ cup raw pumpkin seeds
- ½ cup unsalted peanuts, finely chopped
- ¼ cup vegan chocolate chips
- 1 T. Chia seeds
- ¼ t. salt
- ½ cup brown rice syrup (should be with the honey and agave in most grocery stores)
- ¼ cup natural creamy peanut butter (unsalted & unsweetened)
- 1 t. vanilla extract
- Line a 9 x 9" baking pan with parchment or wax paper.
- In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients.
- In a saucepan over medium heat, or in a microwave-safe bowl heated in 30-second increments, heat the brown rice syrup and the peanut butter until liquefied and smooth. Add the vanilla extract and stir to combine.
- If the liquid mixture is hot, allow to cool to warm (you don't want to melt the chocolate chips). Pour the liquid over the dry ingredients and stir until completely combined. It should be difficult to stir.
- Transfer mixture to the lined pan and spread evenly. Cover top with a sheet of wax paper and press down firmly with your hands. Use the side of a can to roll and press all the way to the edges of the pan. The firmer you press, the more likely your bars will stay together.
- Place pan into the freezer for 10-15 minutes to firm.
- Remove pan from freezer, lift parchment paper and bars out of pan, and transfer to a cutting board. Using a large, sharp knife or a pizza cutter, cut granola square into 10-12 bars, depending on how large you want them.
- Eat right away, or transfer to an air-tight container and keep in the fridge to stay firm, or leave at room temperature for a softer bar.
These granola bars are so delicious and easy to make, you’ll wonder why you’ve never made them before now!
And as an added bonus, your kids will love them! Throw these in their school bags, and they’ll get a tasty dose of fiber, minerals, and healthful fats. You can even let them help you make them 🙂