>> Monday, March 15, 2010
I've posted my Chewy Granola Bars recipe a couple of times before on this blog. It's a favorite around here and amazingly has remained pretty much unchanged for a couple of years. Unchanged...until a couple of weeks ago. Sometimes change just has to happen. Some added spice, a dollop of almond butter, and voila! Chewy Granola Bars are transformed into Nutty Granola Bars!
These granola bars are such a tasty and easy alternative to store-bought granola bars. And while they do have butter and sugar in them, the ingredient list is simple, and I can control what I'm putting in them. No hidden trans fat. Only whole grains. And with the addition of some nut butter, they get a protein boost. I feel content serving these as a snack to my kids - or even as a breakfast on special occasion.
I used MaraNatha No-Stir Almond Butter (free samples were provided by MaraNatha for a previous review and giveaway), but I think that any nut butter would be fine. I generally have only plain-jane natural peanut or almond butter on hand, and that is what I will probably use in the future. For the spice, I opted for pumpkin pie spice, which is a blend of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves. Plain cinnamon would be a great substitute.
Give these a try! Sometimes change is a very, very good thing.
Nutty Granola Bars
3 cups rolled oats (quick oats are fine)
2/3 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice or cinnamon
1/4 cup and 3 TBSP butter, softened
1/3 cup honey
3 TBSP and 1 and 3/4 tsp packed brown sugar
3 TBSP nut butter of choice
1/2 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips
3 TBSP flaxseed meal or wheat germ (optional)
Preheat oven to 325 F. Lightly grease a 9"x13" pan.
In a large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients and mix well.
Firmly press mixture into the prepared pan. Bake at 325 F for 20 min or until golden brown. Let cool for 10 min and then cut into bars. Let bars cool completely in pan before removing or serving. (This is so important! They'll be very crumbly until they are absolutely cool.) On hot summer days, might want to store in the fridge so that they're not as crumbly and the chocolate doesn't melt.