Chewy Granola Bars

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granola bars-23I’ve made so many batches of granola bars that I’m surprised anybody dared to eat these at all.

It isn’t that the former batches were bad. They just…weren’t…good.

They had all the granola bar flavor, but none of the “stick-together-ness.”

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Actually, never mind. I was intending to make breakfast granola every single one of those times. Not granola bars.

Crumbly breakfast granola. That’s it. Even though I did perhaps mistakenly call it granola bars while I was making it. But I was meaning to make breakfast granola. Of course.

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So I guess you’d call this a failed recipe, because it isn’t crumbly breakfast granola.

These bars actually stick together.

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And they are chewy, just like a granola bar is supposed to be.

Finally. A granola bar that holds together. That we can put in a container in our greasy lunch bag and take all the way up to the ski area and toss around and shake the container for fun and still have a granola bar.

don't they look lonely without the chocolate?

don’t they look lonely without the chocolate?

Not to mention OAT FREE and pretty nearly paleo (depends if you eat honey, nuts, and peanut butter). After making all of those stupid oat granola bars it was the oat free ones that worked.

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I will now present you with my triumphant smile. (this is the part where you’re supposed to have a hungry smile, or maybe a jealous frown.)

While you frown with envy, I will now bite into one of these bars and laugh maliciously.

Forget it. We don’t have any left.

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Ingredients

1 cup honey

3 tablespoons peanut butter

Pinch salt

Pinch cinnamon

2 cups nuts (I used 1 cup pecans and 1 cup almonds, but you can use pretty much any combo)

1 cup raisins or dried cranberries

2 cups shredded coconut

Okay then!

Put a sheet of parchment paper into a 9 by 13 inch pan.

If you use super cool all natural organic honey straight from a giant bucket like we do, then you’ll have to melt it in a little pan. First, measure it out, then stick it in a saucepan and melt on medium-low heat.

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Spoon the 3 tbsp peanut butter into a bowl and add the salt and cinnamon.

I tried this with both "all natural" peanut butter and "regular" peanut butter. Either works.

I tried this with both “all natural” peanut butter and “regular” peanut butter. Either works. My family has a running argument  on whether creamy peanut butter or crunchy peanut butter is better.Show your support of the awesome side. Go for the crunchy.

Since our blender is a weakling, I chopped the nuts one cup at a time. If you have a STRONG blender, just put them all in at once. I blended until part of the mix looked like a really coarse flour but there were still a few whole nuts in there:

Beautiful.

Beautiful.

Dump the nuts into the bowl with the peanut butter, salt, and cinnamon. But don’t stir yet.

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Measure out 1 cup of raisins or dried cranberries, then dump the dried fruit on top of the nuts (which you still haven’t stirred in).

I used dried cranberries. We were out of raisins.

I used dried cranberries. We were out of raisins.

Add the 2 cups of coconut in a flood of beautiful whiteness that looks like snow on a ski hill (sorry, I get kind of carried away with coconut. It’s amazing stuff).

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Remember, you still haven’t stirred anything together.

Pour on the melted honey.

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Yes, NOW you can stir.

Stir it until it looks about like this:

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Then press it into the prepared pan.

Cook for about 25 minutes on 350 degrees F, until the surface is golden brown. The bars will be pretty soft and not at all firm. It will scare you like it did me because you’ll think that your granola bars have failed. But be patient.

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DO NOT cut it yet. Just don’t. Instead, leave it on the counter to cool for about an hour, then put it in the refrigerator to cool for another hour or so. You don’t want to cut the bars until the bottom of the pan is completely cooled.

Once the bottom of the pan is cooled, cut the bars into neat rectangles. If they don’t come right off of the parchment paper, flip the whole thing quickly onto a cutting board, pull the pan off, and then gently peel the parchment paper away.

Drizzle the bars with chocolate. Because that is absolutely necessary. Below is a paleo recipe (if you eat honey anyway). Be aware that the drizzle is not at all sweet—the bitterness of the chocolate contrasts nicely with the sweetness of the granola bars.

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Paleo Chocolate Drizzle Recipe

4 ounces 100% dark chocolate

¾ teaspoon coconut oil (yes, OIL. Not butter)

½ teaspoon honey

 

Melt all of the ingredients together in a double boiler double boiler until everything is completely melted. Drizzle over the bars, then put the bars in the freezer for about 10 minutes until the chocolate solidifies.

Store the bars in an airtight plastic container.

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Comments

  1. Laura Anna says:

    Linnaea, your website is wonderful! I just came across it (your website) and this recipe for chewy granola bars. I think you are doing a great thing for so many people.

  2. Linnaea says:

    Thanks so much for your comment, Laura Anna! It always makes my day to get positive comments like this one. :)

  3. dina says:

    they look amazing!

  4. Kelly C says:

    Oh my goodness! These are delicious! Thanks for an awesome recipe! I love all your recipes and these are the perfect pick-me-up snacks that I so desperatley need some afternoons! (and they are gluten/grain free and high in protein!) Thanks so much!

    Kelly

  5. Laurie Fesmire says:

    I have been told I need to be gluten free and have hesitated because of food choices. I was excited when I found your article in Mary Jane’s and went directly to your blog! What a wonderful sight. Thank you so much for going through all this to help so many out.

  6. Linnaea says:

    Thanks for your comment, Laurie! I’m always really excited when I hear that someone has found my blog useful. :)

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