Chewy Granola Bars

My kids like to eat.  Often.  So snack time is a very big deal.  They love granola bars but the boxed ones can be filled with more sugar and preservatives than I care to feed my starving zoo animal boys. The ones that are organic and wholesome can cost you an arm and a leg and sometimes even an eyeball, so I decided a long time ago that homemade granola bars were the way to go!  I’ve tried a bazillion different recipes and this one is the result of many kitchen experiments and my family’s favorite!

Chewy Granola Bars

3 cups oats
2 cups puffed wheat cereal (you can use rice krispies, but they puffed wheat cereal is a way healthier option)
(OR you can use 5 cups of just oats, no cereal)
1 cup flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1 cup honey
1/2 stick butter, melted
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup nuts, dried fruit, or chocolate chips (or a combination of any of them!)

Mix all dry ingredients together.

Mix all wet ingredients together.

Mix all together. Then add nuts, fruit, etc and fold in.

Pour onto cookie sheet(If you are using a regular cookie sheet, I would advise lining it with wax paper because these puppies are sticky! I use my nicely seasoned Pampered Chef Bar Pan and they come out perfect every time!).  Press down firmly until the entire pan is covered and the granola is packed down.

 Bake at 325 degrees for about 15-20 minutes.  That time is up for debate though because my oven is like a box of chocolates: you never know what you’re gonna get.  So just watch them carefully and remove when they are nice and golden brown, like this:

 Be careful not to overcook or they will not be chewy! And your husband who hates crunchy granola bars be will be severely disappointed and insist you use a timer next time instead of just “smelling for them.”

Oh, is that just my husband?  OK, sorry.

Score the bars while warm and then let cool.  These can also be frozen if your family will not eat the whole batch before they go stale.  Which I haven’t had to do in a good couple of years.

Check out Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays for more great recipes!

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