Friday, July 1, 2011

Homemade Healthy Granola Bars

I'm adventuring into a whole new world of snacks with this one! Normally we do chips & salsa, trail mix, cheese, sliced vegetables, apples & almond butter etc for snacks but I felt this morning at 7:30 a.m. that we needed to be move adventurous! So granola bars it was!!

I did some research on granola recipes for a bit and found everything to be FULL of sugar, butter, and not very much of the good-for-you-stuff. So I modified and made up my own to find a very happy recipe that Ryan and his co-workers all really liked! I was even told I could sell these since they were "the best granola bars they had ever eaten"! That's an idea...:)

Loaded Healthy Granola Bars

Ingredients:

2 cups of oats
1/4 c of flax seed (could sub out with wheat germ?)
3/4 c pumpkin or sunflower seeds
3/4 c chopped almonds
3 tbsp butter
1/3 c brown sugar (this is all I had on hand but you can probably use cane sugar)
1/2 c raw & unfiltered honey
2 tsp almond extract (you could use vanilla instead)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup raisins (or other dried fruit)
1/2 cup shredded coconut (leave this out if you're not a fan)

Butter two sheets of parchment paper and line an 11 X 13 glass pan with it one, saving the other for later.

Preheat oven to 400 F. Mix oats, flax seed, sunflower seeds, and almonds together in a large bowl. Spread on a baking sheet and place in oven to toast for about 15 mins, stirring once in a while to evenly brown. Turn off the oven when done (that was the only step you needed with an oven!)


Combine all wet ingredients butter, sugar, honey, almond extract and salt into a small pot and to bring to a simmer. Stirring frequently to prevent burning.


Once oats are toasted and the stove-top ingredients are simmering combine everything along with raisins and coconut together in a large bowl. Stir this combination of everything up really well!


Press the mixture into the parchment lined pan, pressing down evenly. Place the other piece of parchment paper, buttered side down, on top of the mixture pressing firmly and allow to cool like this. About an hour (or two?) later it should be cool enough to dump onto a cutting board and slice into "bar sizes". Wrap in saran wrap to keep fresh!

{Pressed down mixture awaiting the top layer of parchment}

{The easy step of letting it rest and cool for awhile}

{Carefully pull back paper or you will find small pieces tear off}

{Cut with a large knife into bars!}

**About a 30 minute process total and you can adjust this recipe to fit your taste preferences! You could add chocolate chips, craisins, dried apples or apricots, or lots of other goodies! Let me know how it goes if you try this out!

Lord, your discipline is good, for it leads to life and health. You restore my health and allow me to live!
Isaiah 38:16

4 comments:

  1. Yummy! These look delicious! I was just thinking of making some granola bars but they all seemed super unhealthy....I will have to give these a try for sure. Ryan is one lucky guy to have a wife that makes these delicious treats for him!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yum!!! These are definitely our favorite! And good for you!

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  2. Carly,

    Thank you for coming up with recipe. It is delicious! When I first read this post it was as if you have been listening to DH and me talk about the "healthy" granola bars and that I was going to have to adapt our granola recipe to make bars.

    Isn't that funny?!

    Thank you again,
    @Marie4SoL

    P.S., Would you mind if I link to this post when I write about my granola bars?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Haha Marie that is funny! I feel like I always have to adapt recipes to make then ACTUALLY healthy too :) I would love if you linked me to your recipe. Can't wait to hear how yours turn out. These are a huge hit around our house!

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