These Chewy Granola Bars are a sweet and healthy breakfast or snack!
Ever since we’ve made the switch to eating more whole foods, I feel my tastes have changed.
Fruits taste sweeter, savory foods are more satisfying, and milk chocolate has really lost its luster.
Still I can admit that there are a lot of foods that taste amazing in packaged form. Not to mention it’s so much easier to open a package than to cook something from scratch. I could seriously go to town on a can of frosting but would inevitably have a huge stomach ache (full of trans fats) when I was done. I could also make fresh pasta, knowing everything that went into it, but is it really worth the time and effort every single time?
This recipe comes to you courtesy of a request by my friend Erica. Here’s what Erica had to say:
I need a simple and (relatively) heathy chewy granola bar for my husband to eat in the mornings. He eats the box ones like they are going out of style and ain’t no body got time for that!
I assume what Erica means is, ain’t nobody got money for that. The boxes start adding up quick when you’re going through a few bars a day. I’ve been there, and I love those chewy little bars. Still, it’s good to have a copycat on hand once in a while, for both health and wallet reasons. While I’m still in love with this nutty granola bar, I’ve come up with a chewier version that is sure to please.
This granola bar is totally customizable. They’re already vegan (if you use vegan chocolate or omit the drizzle). Use gluten free oats if you need to. Use almond or sunflower butter instead of peanut butter. Add raisins, peanut butter chips, or chocolate chips to the mix. You can also make a double batch and freeze the extras to have on hand any time you need them.
What do you wish you could make from scratch instead of getting from a box?
Chewy Granola Bars
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Spread oats evenly on a baking sheet and toast in the oven 10-15 minutes or until slightly golden brown. When done toasting, transfer the oats to a medium bowl.
- Place dates in a food processor and process until well chopped and dough-like (about 1 minute). Add dates to the oats in the bowl along with cashews, vanilla, maple syrup, peanut butter, and salt. Mix thoroughly, breaking up the dates until well incorporated throughout the mixture. Transfer the mixture to a parchment lined 8×8 baking dish and press down until evenly flattened.
- In a small bowl, melt chocolate carefully in the microwave. Drizzle over the top of the bars. Transfer the bars to the freezer for 10 minutes to set.
- Use the parchment to lift the bars out of the pan, then cut into 10 even bars. Store in an airtight container for 3-4 days, or in the freezer for several months.