A Recipe for Homemade Granola Bars

This healthy recipe for homemade granola bars is easy to make and a nutritious choice for your family.
By Denise Garoutte
September/October 1985
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I invented what I feel is an unbeatable recipe for homemade granola bars.
PHOTO: MOTHER EARTH NEWS STAFF


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This recipe for homemade granola bars is not only a healthy but easy to make recipe for your family. 

A Recipe for Homemade Granola Bars

My family loves granola—especially granola bars. Unfortunately, most store-bought granola bars are nothing but candy in clever disguise.  And the few truly nutritious granola products on the market more often than not taste like cardboard and cost like the devil.

So, once again, necessity was the mother, and — after a bit of experimentation — I invented what I feel is an unbeatable recipe for homemade granola bars. While I consider the following list of ingredients to be the core of the recipe, you can change things around a bit to suit your family's tastes and preferences. In fact, in a moment I'll offer some suggestions for doing just that.

Recipe for Homemade Granola Bars

2½ cups rolled oats (old-fashioned or instant)
1 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1/2 cup wheat germ
1/2 cup slivered almonds
4 tablespoons butter or margarine
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup honey
1 cup raisins
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
 

While your oven is preheating to 300 degrees Fahrenheit, spread the oats, coconut, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, wheat germ and almonds evenly on a 9 inch by 12 inch baking sheet. Bake these dry ingredients for 20 minutes, stirring them occasionally.

Meanwhile, heat the butter (or margarine), brown sugar and honey in a small saucepan, allowing the brew to simmer until the oat mixture is ready to come out of the oven. (If you or yours like really crispy granola, bake the dry ingredients an additional few minutes.) As soon as the oat mixture is out, add the raisins, stirring them into the other ingredients.

Now remove the honey from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract, then pour the hot liquid over the oat mixture and stir until all the dry ingredients are coated.

Next, press the granola firmly into the bottom of a greased 8 inch by 8 inch pan and place it in the still-warm oven to bake (at the same 300 degrees Fahrenheit as before) for 20 minutes. (An 8 inch by 8 inch pan makes bars about an inch thick; if you want thinner bars, use a slightly larger pan.)

When you remove the granola from the oven, allow it to cool only slightly before cutting it into squares, but wait until it's completely cool before removing the bars from the pan.

Granola Recipe: Variations on the Theme

While the following suggestions for altering the basic granola recipe certainly aren't the only acceptable modifications, at least they've all been tried and proven delicious.

  • Add diced figs, dates, apples, apricots or other dried fruit when you stir in the raisins.
  • Add 1/2 cup crunchy peanut butter to the honey mixture. 
  • Substitute a cup of rolled wheat or rye for one of the 2-1/2 cups of oats.
  • Add 1/2 cup poppy seeds, soy grits, seven-grain cereal or bran to the oat mixture.
  • Use carob chips or peanuts (or your favorite nut) in the dry ingredients, either in addition to or in place of the almonds.
  • Use a little molasses in place of part of the honey.

You can also experiment with various other flavorings. For instance, try adding cinnamon with diced dried apples, or a little shredded orange peel with orange juice (but be careful to use no more than half a cup of juice, since too much liquid will make the bars fall apart).

There's no Cookin' Like Home Cookin'!

The cost of making these nutrition- and flavor-packed granola bars is less than half that of their store-bought counterparts. But what I like even better than their low cost and high food value is that they're truly delicious — as any snack food (nutritious or otherwise) must be in order to succeed.


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Post a comment below.

 

foodieinside
6/5/2014 12:47:04 AM
There is no limit of http://gourmed.com/ regardless of whatever be the cuisine of the food that you love to eat. Excellent recipe indeed!

leigh.schnekenburgerhofferth
5/8/2013 3:36:18 PM

I have made this a couple times. I boil the honey mixture quite a while, constantly stirring, so maybe that's why mine holds together pretty well. It does crumble somewhat but that's okay - I use those as a cereal. :)


Shirley Stann
3/4/2013 2:50:30 PM
I have had this recipe for years and just made it last night. These are delicious. They crumbled when I cut them until I used a really sharp cerrated knife and sort of "sawed: them and then they did not crumble anymore. The edges do cruble no matter what. The only change I made was I added peanut butter and extra oats and used 2 pans (8x8) instead of one. This made more bars PLUS they had fewer calories b/c they were not so thick. I got 18 bars from this recipe and am so happy with them. And I LOVE the fact that there is only 1/4 cup of brown sugar in 18 bars. I dont know why I never made them before.

Roger Warstler
5/28/2011 3:53:00 PM
I made the granola bars and they tasted very good. They fall apart when cutting. I made this twice and same thing happened. What do I need to do to solve this problem?

Tony Huan
10/23/2008 6:03:48 PM
I tried the granola bar recipe. It tastes good. However, my problem is I can't seem to cut them into bars. The mixture is crumbly. Rather difficult to eat on the go. Appreciate insight into this. Thanks a million.

brittany.washington
2/9/2008 2:36:52 PM
i emptied a packet of hot chocolate mix into my dry mixture and that made for lots of chocolaty goodness...

lornamoravec
5/10/2007 5:06:10 PM
I got into the snacks at my son's house while baby-sitting and my daughter-in-law had made this and it is GREAT!








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