Homemade Granola Bars

It’s been awhile since I posted! I’m sorry, but I promise I have good reason: I got a new job! I’ve spent the past week in super intense training at the new office, and commuting a pretty far way, so I haven’t had much time to cook.

On that note, I barely have time for breakfast (gasp!) or lunch sometimes. Granola is a great snack to keep on hand, since it can be a meal on the go or a nice energy boost in the middle of your day. I got this recipe from the majestic Ina Garten, and made some minor tweaks. I’m not a fan of dates, so I just upped the cranberry and apricot quantities. I also had no idea where to find wheat germ, so I left it out.

You will need:

  • 2 cups old fashioned oatmeal
  • 1 cup sliced almonds
  • 1 cup shredded coconut
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2/3 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 3/4 cup dried apricots, chopped
  • pinch of salt

First, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Prepare an 8×12 baking pan by lining with parchment paper.

On a flat baking sheet, lay out the oats, coconut, and almonds.

Mix it all together and spread it out evenly, and place in your preheated oven for about 10-12 minutes.

Give them a good stir midway, so the entire mixture has a chance to get nice and toasty. Once it starts to brown up and your house smells like toasted coconut, take the mixture out and pour into a large mixing bowl, and reduce the oven heat to 300 degrees.

In a small saucepan, combine the honey, butter, brown sugar, vanilla, and salt. Let the mixture melt together over medium heat, and whisk away. It will melt up very quickly and start to bubble up. Once it’s done, turn off the heat, wait for the bubbles to dissipate, and pour into the bowl with the oat mixture.

Add the dried cranberries and chopped apricots to the bowl, and give the entire thing a very thorough stir.

Pour the mixture into your prepared baking pan, wet your fingers, and press the mixture down so everything is packed and even. Place into your oven for 25-30 minutes.

When it’s done, it will be a deep golden brown, and it will smell amazing.

Let the granola cool for at least two hours. Do not stick the hot granola directly into your fridge! When you put hot stuff in a cold environment it’s a breeding ground for bacteria. Let the granola cool at room temperature first, and then stick it in the fridge. Or you could leave it out at room temperature for 3 hours or more.

When they’re cooled, remove them from the pan and cut into bars.

Keep them on hand for the week, and you’re all set!


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