Chewy Granola Bars

When September and back-to-school time rolls around I always think of these bars.  That’s because my children loved them and I always made them to have as after school snacks, or to pack in lunch boxes.  I still make them because Mr. D. likes them a lot and I like to have them around for a healthy snack.

These bars can be customized to your taste by the addition of your favorite fruits and nuts or chips.  They are a great way to use up small amounts of fruits, or chips left over from another recipe.  They also freeze well and pack well so you can have them available all the time.  They can easily go along on a hike, a car trip, or camping.  What I like to do is wrap each square individually in plastic wrap, place in a covered container in the freezer, and take out the desired number as needed.  Last weekend Mr. D, and his friend went fishing for the day, and took some of these bars along to munch on.  His friend called to thank me and tell me how much he liked them.

These bars smell wonderful as they are baking, and eating one leads to wanting  another one, so they don’t last long.  It’s good to make a double recipe if you want to have a quantity on hand;  some to eat, and some to freeze.

CHEWY GRANOLA BARS

YIELD:  about 1 dozen bars, cut 2″ x 4 1/2″

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 2/3 cups quick rolled oats
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/3 cups oat flour  (or 1/3 cup quick oats, processed till finely ground in a food processor or blender)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2-3 cups mixed dried fruit and nuts (example: cranberries, apricots, dates, raisins, coconut, almonds, walnuts, chocolate chips)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 1/4 cup honey, maple syrup, or corn syrup
  • 1 Tablespoon water

DIRECTIONS

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease a 13″ x 9 ” pan.

2.  Stir together all the dry ingredients including fruits and nuts.

3.  In a separate bowl, whisk together the vanilla, melted butter, syrup or honey and water.

4.  Toss the wet ingredients with the dry ingredients until the mixture is evenly crumbly.

5.  Spread in prepared pan to evenly cover the bottom and pat down gently.

6.  Bake for 25 – 30 minutes, until golden brown around the edges.  Remove from oven, loosen the edges and let cool for 5 minutes.

7.  Use a knife ( or bench knife) to cut bars while still warm.  Cool on rack.  Wrap individually to store or with parchment paper between the layers in an air tight container.  These bars freeze well.

SOURCE:   King Arthur Flour

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