Hungry? Oh, do I have some Granola Bars for you! These are crunchy with almonds, chewy with dried apricots and wild blueberries, and barely sweet with local honey. I love them for breakfast on-the-go, and for dunking in hot, French roasted coffee. The bars are energizing, too. And energy is exactly what you need when your new puppy wants to play endless rounds of “fetch.” I’ll admit there are as many ways to make granola bars as there are ingredients to put in them. The following version requires only minimal ingredients and cookware.
Let’s make some gorgeous granola bars!
To start, prepare an 8×12 baking dish: lightly coat the dish with vegetable spray, and then line it with parchment paper. The veggie spray will hold the paper in place. Set the dish aside.
Next, jump out of your skin (and nearly drop your camera) when your puppy emits a blood-curdling scream.
The source of the puppy’s agitation? A maple leaf blowing in the wind.
Phew. Back to baking!
Pour some old-fashioned oats (not quick oats) onto a baking sheet.
Add some slivered almonds…
And some shredded coconut (sweetened or not, your choice here)…
And toss them about with a spoon or spatula to mix.
No picture of this next step, because I forgot to take one: Pop the oat mixture into a preheated 350°F oven, and bake, stirring from time to time, until the ingredients color just slightly — 10-12 minutes.
Tip the barely-baked oat mixture into a large mixing bowl.
Then stir in some toasted wheat germ…
Some local honey…
A splash of pure vanilla extract…
And a nice pinch of kosher salt.
I hope you have a special measuring spoon that indicates “nice pinch.”
Now’s the time to add dried fruit! You can use any dried fruit that floats your boat.
If you’re are like me, you’ll add some dried apricots, chopped into raisin-size pieces…
And some dried, wild blueberries.
Scoop the sticky mixture into the prepared baking dish, and press it down firmly with your wet hands or a measuring cup. If you use a measuring cup, spray its underside with non-stick spray.
Reduce oven temperature to 300°F, and bake the works until lightly golden brown — 25-30 minutes. Enjoy the fragrance that has filled your kitchen.
Permit the granola mixture to cool for at least 3 hours, so the honey can set up and hold all of the ingredients together. Then lift the granola by the parchment paper, and place it on your work surface. Slice into bars or squares.
Think you’ll give these healthy snacks a try? You can let me know by leaving a comment. As always, I love hearing from you!
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Here’s the printable, in case you need it: