Granola Bars

There are so many bars to choose from in a grocery store. They taste really good, but they’re wrapped in plastic and they have tons of additives. A lot of them claim to be “healthy” but are really just packed with sugar. They’re kind of just like cookies with protein in them. If you want a sugary protein filled snack, why not eat some homemade peanut butter cookies? Finding a bar that’s actually healthy can be challenging. After looking at lots of recipes, I found this one and tweaked it a bit. (I’ve made granola bars before, but they were basically just oatmeal cookies.) I decided to use brown rice syrup in these. Brown rice syrup is lower on the glycemic index than other sweeteners. It also has magnesium, potassium, iron, manganese, zinc and B vitamins. You can also use honey though, and although I haven’t tried it, maple syrup would probably work too.

Here are the ingredients I used in my granola bars. I bought the oats, nuts and dried fruits in bulk with cloth bags at Whole Foods.

  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/3 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/3 cup chopped almonds
  • 1/2 cup dried chopped figs
  • 1/2 cup dried chopped apricots (the ones in the picture are unsulfured so that’s why they aren’t bright orange)
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup peanut butter (I used my homemade peanut butter)
  • 1/4 cup brown rice syrup or honey

Mix the oats, nuts, fruits and salt in a bowl. (I can’t find my picture of that.) Mix the peanut butter and brown rice syrup in a separate bowl. Add the peanut butter mixture to the oat mixture.

It will look crumbly, but don’t worry. Press very firmly into a greased 8×8 pan, and cut into squares. Its much easier to cut them before baking.

Bake at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes, or until the edges are golden. Mine looked like this when they were finished:

Since I had cut them before baking, they lifted out of the pan very easily once they had completely cooled.

Enjoy with a glass of almond milk.

Note: these aren’t super sweet. If you’re looking for a granola bar that tastes like an oatmeal cookie this isn’t it. These have about the same level of sweetness as this granola.

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6 thoughts on “Granola Bars

  1. Mine turned out delicious, but super crumbly, so I’ve just turned it into granola. How do I modify to make it stick together better? More syrup or…? (I did substitute the peanut butter for almond butter, but I wouldn’t think that would make too big a difference). Thanks!

  2. Hi Mary Kat,

    I’ve noticed you mentioned a few times that honey might be toxic when heated. I did some research and I found that this is not thought to be true by most experts. It is not good to heat honey, though, because it reduces and even eliminates all health benefits from the honey. Here is one legitimate source that I liked on this topic (the first part is relevant, and the second part is about colony collapse disorder–very important to read, though not about our topic at hand!):

    http://grist.org/food/2009-10-28-heat-makes-honey-toxic-and-other-myths-of-the-hive/

    It basically says that heating honey destroys the enzymes in it, which doesn’t render it toxic. It makes it much less healthy for the individual using it. Another source that shed some light on the topic was this one:

    http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=96

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