Chewy Cherry Almond Granola Bars

August 13, 2012

in Breakfast,Brownies & Bars,Desserts

My granola bars Word doc file has pages of recipes in it.  None of them“spoke” to me the way this recipe did because when I discovered it I didn’t want it to get buried in that huge file.  So, I created a file specifically for this recipe and gave it the following name:  “Granola Bars – These look fabulous.doc.”  I wasn’t going to lose track of this recipe!

Before I got around to making it, one of my favorite bloggers posted the very same recipe; and her description and photos of it made me pull up the file to check it out once again.  One of the reasons I hadn’t gotten around to making it earlier was that it called for coconut oil, currently a very popular recipe ingredient in the blogging world.  Coconut oil is not a staple in my pantry—but, conveniently, I had just purchased a bottle for another recipe.  Quicker than you can say “granola,” I had the rest of the ingredients out on the counter.

This is another case of “what took me so long to make these?”  The granola bars are chewy, crunchy, and very tasty.  They hold together well so they’re easy to handle without them falling apart.  Other than toasting the nuts, there is no baking involved, only a little bit of cooking on the stovetop.  Once you process the nuts, you throw everything in a large bowl and then pour the melted ingredients in and mix everything together.  You press the mixture into a pan and refrigerate it.  That’s it!

The recipe lends itself to easy tweaking by substituting your favorite nuts or dried fruit for those listed.  I’m also thinking of swapping out some of the processed oatmeal for an equal amount of protein powder next time I make it.  A half cup of mini chocolate chips to go along with the dried cherries would surely put it over the top.  Next time will be fairly soon, methinks!

One year ago:  College Quiche

Chewy Cherry Almond Granola Bar

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup whole almonds, toasted
  • 1 cup pecan halves (or walnuts), toasted
  • 1 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1 cup dried cherries, chopped if large
  • 1 tbl. sesame seeds, toasted
  • 1 tbl. flax seeds
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tbl. honey
  • 3 tbl. coconut oil
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp. almond extract
  • dash of cinnamon

Directions

Add 1/2 cup each of almonds, pecans, and old fashioned oats into a food processor.  Process until fine (not too long or it will start to turn into nut butter!) then pour into a large bowl. Roughly chop the remaining pecans and almonds, then add to the bowl.  Add remaining old- fashioned oats, cherries, and sesame seeds; then mix well and set aside.

Combine honey, coconut oil, salt, vanilla & almond extracts, and cinnamon in a small saucepan over medium heat.  Stir until the mixture melts, then foams; then cook for 15 seconds longer.

Pour over nut mixture and mix thoroughly to coat all the ingredients.

Line a half sheet pan or 8×8 pan with enough saran wrap or parchment paper to let it hang far over the sides; then pour in granola.

Press very, very firmly with your hands or something with a flat bottom (may need to spray it with non-stick spray.)  Wrap the overhanging saran wrap or parchment paper up over the sides and refrigerate until firm, about 4 hours.

Using a sharp knife, cut chilled granola into bars.  Wrap individually in saran wrap and store in the fridge or freezer.  I cut mine into 10 rectangular bars.

Source:  Recipe originally from Iowa Girl Eats with a jog from Sweet Pea’s Kitchen

One comment on “Chewy Cherry Almond Granola Bars

  1. Christina @ Sweet Pea's Kitchen on said:

    Mmmm….this makes me want to run into the kitchen right now and make some more! They went so fast in my house…I am so glad you enjoyed them as much as we did! :)

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