Thursday, June 3, 2010

Granola Bars

Granola bars are great to have on hand when you need a quick or portable snack, but they can get spendy at the store (especially with as many people as we feed here) and have you ever read the back of the box? Gross.

I have spent so long trying to find a granola bar recipe I was happy with. I wanted healthy, but doesn't taste like dirt and something that was soft and chewy, but stayed together in a bar shape. Oh I found it! A no-bake granola bar that is all my dreams and more :) This is a highly adaptable recipe so feel free to substitute with what your family likes and what you have on hand, just be sure to keep the same ratio of wet to dry ingredients.

Some things you might use:

protein powder
wheat germ
the dried fruit options are endless.....
almond butter or another nut butter
pureed pumpkin instead of peanut butter....
chocolate chips
mini m&ms (freeze them first!)

These are pretty sweet so feel free to experiment using less sugar or no brown sugar at all, but you need the honey to help it all stick together. Pay attention to if your dried fruit already contains added sugar, most of it does.


2 1/2 cups rolled oats
1 cup ground flax seed
3/4 cup high fiber cereal (we used Fiber One)
1 1/2 cups dried fruit (chopped small)
1/2 cup peanut butter (natural with no added sugar. If you only have some with added sugar leave out the brown sugar.)
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup honey (try flavored honey!)
4 Tablespoons butter
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt

Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and grease just for good measure.

Mix together your dry ingredients (except for brown sugar and salt) in a large bowl, set aside.

Over medium high heat melt butter, salt, brown sugar, honey and peanut butter until boiling (stirring constantly.) Boil and stir for 2 more minutes, take care not to let it burn.

Pour liquid goodness over your dry ingredients and combine well.

Dump mixture onto your prepared baking sheet and using a rolling pin covered in butter roll it flat. You want to press down hard so it all sticks together well.

Cool in the fridge (faster so you can eat them sooner!) or on the counter (Boo!) and cut into rectangles and wrap individually.

These will make a great treat to bring camping and hiking this Summer.

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