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HOMEMADE GRANOLA BARS

HOMEMADE GRANOLA BARS.jpg

Have you tried my homemade granola yet?  It’s way lower in sugar than most store-bought versions, loaded with healthy fats, fibre, and plant-based protein, and has been a total hit with all my taste-testers.  Now if that weren’t reason enough to give it a try, here’s another: GRANOLA BARS!

Yup, these granola bars use the same base recipe, with just a touch more maple syrup or honey.  So now you can fill the house with the wonderful aroma of fresh baked granola (one of my fav things!) and have some nutritious-and-delicious portable treats too!

This recipe is for cherry almond granola bars, but feel free to play around with the flavours. I have listed some of our favourites below.

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 cups gluten-free old-fashioned rolled oats

  • 1 cup raw almonds, roughly chopped

  • 1 cup dried cherries, pre-soaked and drained (see note below)

  • 1/2 cup raw walnuts, roughly chopped

  • 1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds

  • 1/2 cup raw pumpkin seeds

  • 1/4 cup unsweetened desiccated coconut

  • 2 Tbsp shelled hemp seeds

  • 2 Tbsp chia seeds

  • 1 tsp Ceylon cinnamon

  • 3/4 tsp sea salt

  • 1/2 cup natural almond butter

  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup or raw honey (nonvegan)

  • 1/3 cup organic coconut oil

  • 1 tsp pure almond extract

  • optional topping: melted dark chocolate for drizzling

Note: Dried fruit can get almost rock hard when baked in granola and granola bars. To avoid this, I recommend that you pre-soak them in warm water for 30 minutes before adding.

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325F and line a standard cookie sheet with parchment.

  2. In a large bowl, mix together oats, almonds, pre-soaked cherries, walnuts, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, coconut, hemp seeds, chia seeds, cinnamon, and salt. Set aside.

  3. Put maple syrup or honey, almond butter, and coconut oil in a small pot over low heat. Melt together with frequent stirring. Remove from heat and stir in almond extract.

  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until well incorporated.

  5. Spread the granola in a single layer on baking sheet and press down firmly.

  6. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes then remove from oven and allow to cool fully before cutting into small bars. Drizzle with melted dark chocolate as desired.

These homemade granola bars can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks, or frozen for longer.

OTHER FLAVOUR OPTIONS

Replace the cherries, almond butter and almond extract with:

  1. Dried blueberries, tahini, and pure vanilla extract

  2. Raisins, peanut butter, and pure vanilla extract

  3. Dried strawberries, peanut butter, and pure vanilla extract