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Homemade Granola Bars

Looking for a quick and easy snack that is both healthy and delicious? Try these healthy Homemade Granola Bars. Made with only dried fruits, chocolate, peanut butter, and oats, these no-bake granola bars are the perfect snack to brighten up any meal plan in just 30 minutes or less!

Even though there are so many options in the stores these days, it’s always best to make your own granola bars. Thankfully it’s fun and easy!

One of the best things about making homemade granola bars is that you can customize them to your own taste, kind of like nut free granola but in bar form. You can use any combination of dried fruits, nuts, and chocolate that you like, which means that you can create a bar that is perfect for your own individual palate.

And, by making granola bars at home, you know exactly what ingredients are going into them, which means that you can avoid any potentially unhealthy additives or preservatives which make them healthy for you and your family.

Another great thing about homemade granola bars is that they make a great on-the-go snack. They are perfect for packing in your lunchbox or taking with you on a hike or outdoor adventure!

Snack bars stacked on parchment paper.

Ingredients You’ll Need

  • Old Fashioned Rolled Oats – The base for these granola bars and adds nice texture.
  • Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips – Adds sweetness and chocolate flavor. You can also use chopped-up dark chocolate instead.
  • Dried Fruit – A mix of dried apricots and dried cranberries give these bars a hint of tartness and sweetness.
  • Chia Seeds – Adds a crunchy texture to these granola bars.
  • Ground Cinnamon – A little bit of cinnamon goes a long way in adding warming flavor to these granola bars.
  • Creamy Peanut Butter – Helps all of the ingredients stick together while adding a rich peanut butter flavor.
  • Honey or Malt Syrup – Gives the granola bars additional sweetness while helping everything stick together properly.
  • Coconut Oil – Adds a touch of healthy saturated fat as well as flavor.
  • Vanilla Extract – Infuses the granola bars with a hint of light vanilla flavor.
  • Salt – Helps balance and enhance the natural flavors of each ingredient.
Ingredients needed for homemade granola bars.

How To Make Homemade Granola Bars

  1. Combine the mix-ins: In a large bowl, add the oats, chocolate chips, dried fruit, cranberries, and cinnamon. Stir to combine and reserve some chocolate and fruit for the top.
  2. Mix the wet ingredients: Add the peanut butter to a microwave-safe bowl and heat in 15-20 second intervals until smooth. Then, add the honey, coconut oil, and vanilla. Stir to combine.
  3. Combine the granola bar mixture: Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix with a rubber spatula until everything is fully combined.
  4. Assemble the granola bars: Press the mixture into a parchment-lined baking pan until evenly distributed. Press the remaining chocolate and dried fruit on top. Let the homemade granola bars chill in the freezer for 20 minutes before slicing and serving.
Collage showing how to make homemade granola bars.

Recipe Tips

  1. Malt syrup will make the homemade granola bars stick together a bit better, but it has a molasses sort of taste that some find overpowering. Honey works well too but might make the bars a bit stickier.
  2. If your granola bar mixture is seeming a little too wet, add in another tablespoon or two of oats until it reaches the desired consistency.
  3. It’s important to make sure the bars chill in the freezer for at least 20 minutes before slicing and serving them or they will be too soft.
  4. Do not use instant oats as they will not hold together well in this recipe.

Variations

  • If you don’t have any chia seeds on hand, try replacing them with ground flaxseed or poppyseeds.
  • Feel free to use any type of dried fruit you like or have on hand including raisins, chopped dates, or dried cherries.
  • For a nut-free granola bar, replace the peanut butter with sunflower seed butter or tahini.
  • You can also add chopped nuts, seeds, or other types of chocolate chips to the granola bars.
  • If you’re not a fan of peanut butter, try using almond butter, cashew butter, or pecan butter instead.
Top down view of sliced homemade granola bars on a pan.

Can I make homemade granola bars gluten-free?

Yes, you can make these granola bars gluten-free by using certified gluten-free oats.

Are homemade granola bars good for you?

Yes, homemade granola bars can be a healthy snack option. They are typically lower in added sugar than store-bought granola bars and they also allow you to control the ingredients that are used.

Storing and Freezing

Storing: Store the granola bars in an airtight container in the fridge for up to one week.

Freezing: To freeze, slice the granola bars into individual servings and place them in a Ziploc bag or airtight container. They will keep in the freezer for up to two months.

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Two homemade granola bars surrounded by dried fruit.

Homemade Granola Bars

Yield: 12 Granola Bars
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Set Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

Looking for a quick and easy snack that is both healthy and delicious? Try these healthy Homemade Granola Bars. Made with only dried fruits, chocolate, peanut butter, and oats, these no-bake granola bars are the perfect snack to brighten up any meal plan in just 30 minutes or less!

Ingredients

  • 1 ¾ cups of old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips, divided
  • ¾ cup of chopped dried apricots, divided
  • ½ cup of dried cranberries, divided
  • ¼ cup of chia seeds
  • ¼ teaspoon of ground cinnamon
  • ⅓ cup of creamy peanut butter
  • ⅓ cup of honey or malt syrup*
  • ¼ cup of coconut oil, melted but not hot
  • 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract or imitation vanilla flavor
  • ½ teaspoon of salt

Instructions

  1. Add the oats, ¾ cup of the chocolate chips, ¾ of the apricots, ¾ of the cranberries, chia seeds and cinnamon to a large bowl. Stir to combine.
  2. Add the peanut butter to a separate medium size bowl. Microwave on medium heat, stirring every 15-20 seconds or until just smooth enough to stir easily.
  3. Add the honey, coconut oil, vanilla and salt to the peanut butter, and stir to combine.
  4. Pour the peanut butter mixture over the oat mixture then stir until well mixed.
  5. Prepare an 8x8 inch baking pan by lining with parchment paper or aluminum foil then press the oat mixture into the baking pan.
  6. Press the remaining chocolate chips, apricots and cranberries onto the bars and freeze for 20 minutes before slicing and serving.
  7. See post for storage options.

Notes

*The calories listed are an approximation based on the ingredients in the recipe card and a serving size of 1 granola bar. Actual calories will vary.

*For more information, tips, and answers to frequently asked questions, please refer to the post.

*Photos courtesy of Karla Rae Photography.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1 bar
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 292Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 127mgCarbohydrates: 40gFiber: 5gSugar: 27gProtein: 5g

*The calories are an estimate and are based on the ingredients and serving size listed. The calories can vary depending on the brand of product purchased.

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