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Friday, September 6, 2013

Granola Bars {w/ 5 suggested variations}

I've been seeing recipes for homemade granola bars a lot lately. I hadn't really thought much about making them until I tried these at my friends house a few weeks ago! And they were sooooo good. I'm not usually a huge granola bar person.  But these are something else!  They taste so pure and wholesome and I love making them because I know what goes into them (I can pronounce all of the ingredients) and they are adaptable to whatever taste you want to get out of them.

Next to the grocery store chewy granola bars these babies get a 5 star rating, they don't even compare in taste!  Go ahead and make them today!  Add what you'd like to the basic granola recipe and have fun! 

No-Bake Chewy Granola Bars {w/ 5+ variations}


4 cups quick cooking oats (or pulse whole oats in a food processor a bit)
2 cup crisp rice or other cereal
½ cup shredded coconut (sweetened or unsweetened)
½ cup butter
½  cup honey
1 cup brown sugar
1  teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
¼ teaspoon baking soda


Mix -In variations listed below

1.  In a large mixing bowl, mix together the oats, cereal and coconut. Place a medium to large sized saucepan over medium high heat and melt the butter. Add the honey, brown sugar and salt. Stir together then leave it alone as it comes to a boil. Once the boil has reached all the way around the edges of the pan, begin timing. Allow this mixture to boil for 2 ½ minutes. During this time, you may need to turn the heat down a bit so it doesn't overflow, but be sure it keeps boiling. When it’s finished boiling remove from heat and add vanilla and baking soda. The soda makes it bubble, so make sure you stir well and have a pan that is bigger than the mixture holds.

2. Pour the mixture over the oats, using a rubber spatula to get all the sugar mixture out of the pan. Mix the ingredients together until the oats are completely coated. Add in your desired mix-ins (just let this cool a bit if you have chocolate chips etc. so they won’t completely melt) then press very firmly into a lightly greased 9x13 inch pan. If you like your bars thicker, you can use a smaller pan. If you do not press firmly enough, the bars will fall apart when you eat them. Place them in the fridge for 20 minutes then cut to size.

Chocolate Chip
Add ½ cup of mini chocolate chips to the finished mixture before pressing into the pan, allowing it cool just a bit or you will end up with melted chips. Sprinkle on a few extra chips over the top after they are pressed into the pan.

White Chocolate Cranberry
Add ⅓ cup of white chocolate chips and ⅓ cup of dried cranberries to the finished mixture before pressing into the pan, allowing it to cool just a bit first or you will end up with melted chips.

Candy Bar
Add ⅓ cup of Heath bar pieces, ⅓ cup of mini M&M's and ⅓ cup of chopped pretzels to the finished mixture before pressing into the pan.

Peanut Butter
Add 2 tablespoons of peanut butter to the finished sugar mixture before pouring it over the oats. Once mixed with the oats, add ½ cup peanut butter chips before pressing into the pan.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip follow the peanut butter (minus pb chips) and chocolate chip variations.

Raisin Nut
Add ⅓ cup of chopped raisins and ⅓ cup of chopped pecans to the finished mixture before pressing into the pan.

Recipe Source: From a friend, Brittany R., who found it via My Kitchen Escapades by Carole Jones.

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