Crispy Honey Nut Granola Bars

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I’ve tried dozens of homemade granola bars over the years – some crunchy, some chewy, some loaded with dried fruit, some studded with chocolate chips, some with honey and some with peanut butter. This one, according to me, is the end-all, be-all. The secret ingredient (believe it or not) is Rice Krispies, which make them wonderfully light and crispy. In fact, if you can imagine what a cross between a granola bar and Rice Krispy Treat would taste like, this is it.

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To make them, begin by lining a baking sheet with aluminum foil and toasting old fashioned rolled oats and nuts in the oven.

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Add the unsweetened coconut about halfway through so it doesn’t burn.

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In the meantime, combine honey, brown sugar, vanilla and salt in a small saucepan and whisk to blend.

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Combine the wet and dry mixtures along with the Rice Krispies in a large bowl and toss well.

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Transfer the mixture to baking pan.

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Spread evenly with a spatula, and then bake for twenty minutes.

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Cool completely, then cut into rectangles.

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These bars are perfect for breakfast on the go, family outings, road trips or afterschool snacks. Once you try them, you’ll never go back to the boxed stuff again. Enjoy!

Crispy Honey Nut Granola Bars

Print Recipe
Servings: Makes 12-16 granola bars
Total Time: 35 Minutes

Ingredients

  • 1-1/2 cups old fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds
  • 2/3 cup shredded unsweetened coconut (available at Whole Foods or natural food markets)
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 3 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup crisp rice cereal, such as Rice Krispies

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with heavy duty aluminum foil.
  2. Spread the oats, walnuts and almonds onto prepared baking sheet. Place in the oven and toast for 7 minutes. Add coconut and toss well, then place back in the oven to cook about 6-8 minutes more. Keep an eye on it towards the end; you want the coconut to turn golden but not burn.
  3. In the meantime, combine the honey, brown sugar, butter, vanilla extract and salt in a small saucepan and place over medium heat. Stir with a whisk until the brown sugar is completely dissolved. Turn off heat and set aside.
  4. Once the oat mixture is done, remove it from the oven and reduce heat to 300 degrees. Combine the the oat mixture, honey mixture and rice cereal in a large bowl and toss well. (Reserve aluminum foil.)
  5. Use the reserved foil to line a 9 x 13-inch baking dish, then spray foil with nonstick cooking spray. Turn granola bar mixture out into the prepared baking dish and spread evenly, being careful not to press down too hard. Bake for 20 minutes (be sure heat is reduced to 300 degrees). Remove from the oven and cool completely, about 1-1½ hours. Use the foil overhang to transfer bars to cutting board, then use a large knife to cut into rectangles. Store in a single layer in an airtight container for up to a week (do not stack the bars or they will stick together and fall apart).
  6. *You can swap in your favorite nuts and seeds as long as you keep the proportions of dry to wet ingredients the same. You can also toss in some dried fruit. On occasion, I’ll sprinkle some chocolate chips over top for the kids (you can't mix them in or they'll melt).
  7. **Be sure your oven is fully preheated before toasting nuts; the initial blast of heat to preheat the oven can burn them.

 

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  • I love your recipes! Being a foodie myself, I have been inspired by your blog and shared it with hundreds of friends! I’m definitely making these bars and adding some flax seed as well.

    Thank you!

  • Rachel Jones

    These look fantastic! I am not a big fan of coconut though, but I’m afraid that omitting it will throw off the delicate balance of fats in the recipe (and lead to a crumbly bar). Could I substitute flaxseed meal maybe?

  • I have been looking for a good homemade granola bar recipe for AGES! This looks perfect! Thank you!

  • Danita

    I was looking for something I could make and send to my son who is deployed right now. This will be perfect as it won’t melt and should package well for shipment.

  • Ohh I love these. I prefer ones w/o peanut butter, so these sound perfect!

  • Esther

    These were GREAT! I did not put the coconut in them (only because my husband dislikes coconut) but the nuts were wonderful in them! I brought some to work & they want more! Extremely easy recipe – another keeper!! Thanks!

  • Joy

    Hi, My family eats very healthy & granola bars are apart of that. I’ve tried other recipes, but didn’t like the outcome. I really want to try yours, but I too have an issue with coconut as the previous poster stated. Could you please give some variations to this recipe? Like how much of the dried fruit & nuts (for a trail mix) to add & others flavors. I’m a recipe follower and I’m afraid of messing stuff up. I can bake and cook very well, but with new things I want it to end up tasting great. Is it possible that you can email me with these change in ingredients? Thanks in advance!

  • Joy, Thanks so much for your question. Granola bars are very forgiving so you can play around with the recipe. I think your best bet would be to replace the coconut with more oats. If you want to add dried fruits, I’d keep it between ¼-½ cup (I sometimes add ¼ cup currants). There are already a lot of nuts in the recipe but feel free to change the variety. The only other thing I would add is that the coconut flavor in these bars is very subtle and almost imperceptible. I use unsweetened dried coconut which has a much milder flavor than the sweetened stuff. Of course, if you have a coconut allergy it’s a moot point but just thought I’d mention in case you wanted to give the original recipe a go. Hope this helps!

  • Joy

    So I finally made these after I put them off for a week b/c I just thought it was to much work. I was wrong…very easy! So I did make a change….I substituted pecans for the walnuts & I made these in my large bar pan from Pampered Chef (needed something a bit smaller)…I didn’t spray it or use foil. I should have sprayed it…it was ok though….I followed all the bake time and they came out crunchy granola bars which is ok…the bits that didn’t stick together we put in a zipper back and we are going to use it as an addition into vanilla yogurt. Next time I will use the foil so I can lift it out of the pan & going to add raisins & decrease the bake time by 5 min. I also did use the coconut and it was the sweetened b/c I couldn’t find unsweet. I don’t like coconut and I couldn’t taste it all all. I was very happy…I will be playing around with this recipe…Thanks for posting it!

  • GJ

    Finally! I have been searching for this recipe for years and can’t wait to try it. I’ve had so many failed homemade granola bar attempts (they usually end up crumbling and turn into granola). Yay!

  • Cassie

    This look simple and AMAZINGLY delicious! I’m going to make it tonight – thanks for sharing!!!

  • Jackie Gaskins

    Yum. That’s all that needs to be said.

  • Julie

    This is one of the first recipes I tried from Once Upon A Chef and it was delicious!!

  • kelly almasy

    These are so good and so much better than the store bought kind! yummm

  • Wendy L.

    Since I found this recipe, I have made it once a week without fail. I’m super busy and this is the perfect on-the-go snack. I follow the recipe but add 1/2 c walnuts; 1/2 c pecans; 1/4 c goji berries; a handful of raw sunflower seeds, raw pumokin seeds, and flax seeds. It’s so unbelieveably delicious. We simply can’t get enough ot it. Thanks, Jen!!

  • Stefani

    These are my go-to granola bar recipe!

  • Stephanie

    I made this last night and followed the recipe perfectly and they were AMAZING! So yummy and my daughter loves them too. Next time I might add a little crazins and some chia seeds I hope its still good with the additions. THANK YOU for sharing your recipe

  • Adrienne Peach

    These are so easy to make and my whole family enjoys them. My kids told me to tell you there the best Granola bars ever!!

  • Carissa

    Thank you for sharing, these were a hit!

  • Jenn,

    Another fantastic recipe! I made these AND your Black Bean Soup today. Love them both! Thank you!!!!

  • Om Nom Nom

    Sooo good. Thanks for the recipe!

  • Jenna

    Just made these and they are delicious! Seriously! I have been trying to find a recipe for a granola bar that wouldn’t fall apart and this held together great. I left the coconut out and added some flax seeds and peanut butter and my family can’t stop eating them. Thanks for posting this recipe!

  • Beverly Doerflein

    I would love to win your Boos Board give-away!
    And I look forward to making this yummy sounding recipe for Granola Bars. Love your website. Thank you!

  • Amy Simonson

    These are FABULOUS! My husband doesn’t like nuts, but loves these. I’m a fan of making my kids’ snacks rather than buying processed food. These are perfect! Nothing in them kids don’t like!

  • Donna

    I have been looking for a recipe for granola bars…cannot wait to try.

  • Liesel

    We have made these granola bars several times and they always disappear quickly. Three of my four kids have peanut allergies, so it is always a challenge to find store bought bars that are not ‘peanut-tainted’. We had been looking for a crispy granola bar recipe, and this one nails it. I always have all the ingredients on hand and just love how the rice Krispies lighten up the bars…. perfect after school snack!

  • Shelley Thomas

    These granola bars are delicious! I would probably bake them for less time so they are not quite as crispy. I think it would also be delicious as loose granola for yogurt.

  • Sarahjones

    I have made these several times for the kids for afterschool snacks they are great!
    Thanks!

  • Carrie

    Great recipe! We added dried fruit; raisins, cherries, pineapple. Still in the oven but looks Yummy!

  • Rebecca

    These are delicious! I use pecans instead of walnuts. The one time I added golden raisins they were almost too sweet for me (which is amazing because I love sweet things!), so I’m sticking to using only nuts and they are perfect every. single. time. Thank you, thank you for another winning recipe!

    • Jenn

      You’re welcome, Rebecca. So glad you enjoyed!

  • Grace

    These are the best granola bars I’ve ever had! So yummy! I wouldn’t change a thing!

  • Celia

    The best granola I made! Truly crispy and tastefull.
    I have photos if you re interested!
    Thank you from Greece

  • These are perfect – exactly what I was looking for: crunchy, crisp, full of flavor! With a small B&B, I’m always on the lookout for keeper-recipes, and this is definitely one! Just packed 2 in our guest’s lunch bag (so she has something to munch on during her painting class. And since she’s come here all the way from Israel, I wanted her to have all that she needed, so these granola bars are filling the bill beautifully!) Thank you!

    • Jenn

      Cheryl, What a thrill to know my granola bars are being served in your B&B! If you have any keeper-recipes that you’d like to share, please send them my way :)

  • kelly almasy

    i will let my 2 year old grandson’s review do the talking…num num!!!

  • Beth Lopez

    Can you make these without coconut?

    • Jenn

      Hi Beth, Yes that would be fine. Just replace the coconut with more of another ingredient that you like.

  • Astrid

    Very good. Tried it and very easy to make.thankyou

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