No time for breakfast? Granola bars to the rescue. Hungry on the plane? Granola bars sure beat pretzels. Long stretch between lunch and dinner? Again, granola bars. They keep your blood sugar levels stable, and keep you from turning into a cranky, hypoglycemic mess.
We can attest that these no-bake bars, which are made with oats, nuts, and coconut, and naturally sweetened with honey (or maple syrup) are some effective, energy-rich treats. You will not traveling without them again. They would also be great snacks for lunch bags and hungry kids who have just arrived home from school. They’re much more tasty and offer more sticking power than any of the store-bought options. Granola bars are the answer!
These bars require about 15 minutes of prep time, then an hour-long rest in the refrigerator to set. Recipe yields 16 granola bars.
- 1 Cup Chopped Almonds
- 3/4 cups Quick-Cooking Oats (or old fashioned oats, pulsed briefly in a food processor or blender to break them up)
- 1 cup large, unsweetened coconut flakes (shredded coconut should work, too)
- 1/2 tsp Ground Cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- 1 cup Creamy Almond Butter or Peanut Butter
- 1/2 cup Honey or Maple Syrup
- 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract
- Line a 9-inch square baker with two strips of criss-crossed parchment paper, cut to fit neatly against the base and up the sides. The parchment paper will make it easy for you to slice the bars later.
- Toast the almonds for maximum flavor (you can skip this step, but your bars won’t be quite as awesome): In a medium skillet over medium heat, toast the almonds, stirring frequently, until they are fragrant and starting to turn lightly golden on the edges, about 5 minutes. Transfer them to a medium mixing bowl.
- To the mixing bowl, add the oats, coconut flakes, cinnamon and salt. Stir until blended.
- In a 2-cup liquid measuring cup, measure out 1 cup almond butter. Top with ½ cup honey, followed by the vanilla extract. Whisk until well blended.
- Pour the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients. Use a big spoon to mix them together until the two are evenly combined and no dry oats remain. The drier the mixture, the more firm the bars will be, so stir in extra oats if the mixture seems wet. Conversely, if you used a super thick almond butter (cough, Justin’s), you might need to drizzle in another tablespoon of honey to help it all stick together.
- Transfer the mixture to the prepared square baker. Use your spoon to arrange the mixture fairly evenly in the baker, then use the bottom of a flat, round surface (like a short, sturdy drinking glass) to pack the mixture down as firmly and evenly as possible.
- Cover the baker and refrigerate for at least one hour, or overnight. This gives the oats time to absorb moisture so the granola bars can set.
- When you’re ready to slice, lift the bars out of the baker by grabbing both pieces of parchment paper on opposite corners. Use a sharp chef’s knife to slice the mixture into 4 even rows and 4 even columns (these “bars” stick together better in a square shape).
- For portability, you can wrap individual bars in plastic wrap or parchment paper. Bars keep well for a couple of days at room temperature, but we recommend storing individually wrapped bars in a freezer-safe bag in the freezer for best flavor. They’ll keep for several months in the freezer.