Almond, Blueberry & Date Homemade Granola Bars

Tested & Perfected Recipes

These homemade granola bars are a mishmash of almonds, dried blueberries, oats, cereal and coconut — all held together with a sweet almond butter-date paste.

homemade granola bars

Meet my new favorite homemade granola bars. They’re crispy, chewy, and rich: a mishmash of nuts, cereal, coconut, and dried blueberries held together with a sweet almond butter-date paste. Unlike most homemade granola bars, they hold together as well as store-bought bars. You can pack them in the kids’ lunches or stuff them in your purse for on-the-go snacking — and they won’t crumble into a million pieces when you’re noshing on the sofa either.

The trick is to purée the dates with the liquid ingredients to make a sticky concoction that binds the ingredients together. A quick flash in the oven helps the bars set too. Keep in mind: these bars are quick to throw together but they do take a few hours to set up after baking. They also keep well; actually, they seem to get better and better so stash them in a zip-lock bag and leave them on the counter all week long to grab-and-go as you please.

What you’ll need to make homemade Granola Bars
Almond Date Blueberry Granola Bars-2

How to make homemade Granola Bars

To begin, place the dates, melted butter, brown sugar, honey, almond butter and salt in a food processor fitted with the steel blade (or use a blender).

Almond Date Blueberry Granola Bars-3

Process until mixture is smooth and thick.

Almond Date Blueberry Granola Bars-4

Transfer to a large pot or microwave-safe bowl large enough to hold all of the ingredients, and bring the mixture to a boil. Whisk to combine, and then add the oats, rice cereal, coconut, almonds, and dried blueberries.

Almond Date Blueberry Granola Bars-5

Use a large rubber spatula to gently fold the mixture until the wet ingredients evenly coat the dry ingredients. Be gentle so as not to crush the rice cereal.

Almond Date Blueberry Granola Bars-6

Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan and, using the bottom of a glass or dry measuring cup, press firmly into an even, compact layer. Bake for 15-18 minutes, until golden brown. Set the pan on a rack and let cool completely, a few hours. (Please do not attempt to cut the bars while still warm, as they will fall apart.)

Almond Date Blueberry Granola Bars-7

Use the foil overhang to lift the uncut bars out of the pan and onto a cutting board. Using a large chef’s knife, cut the block into 16 bars.

Almond Date Blueberry Granola Bars-8

Wrap the bars individually with foil or parchment paper for easy on-the-go snacking, or place them in an airtight container. For more granola bar recipe inspiration, check out my Chewy Chocolate Chip Granola Bars and my Crispy Honey Nut Granola Bars. I also have a wonderful peanut butter granola recipe in my cookbook.

Almond Date Blueberry Granola Bars-9

You may also like

Almond, Blueberry & Date Granola Bars

These homemade granola bars are a mishmash of almonds, dried blueberries, oats, cereal and coconut — all held together with a sweet almond butter-date paste.

Servings: 16 bars
Prep Time: 15 Minutes
Cook Time: 15 Minutes
Total Time: 30 Minutes, plus a few hours to cool and set

Ingredients

  • 3 oz pitted Medjool dates (see note)
  • 6 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp honey
  • 3/4 cup unsalted creamy almond butter (see note)
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1-1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 2-1/2 cups crispy rice cereal, such as Rice Krispies
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened flaked coconut
  • 3/4 cup coarsely chopped almonds
  • Heaping 1/3 cup dried blueberries

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and set an oven rack in the middle position. Line a 9-by-13-in pan with aluminum foil, so that it hangs over the edges, and spray with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Place the dates, melted butter, brown sugar, honey, almond butter and salt in a food processor fitted with the steel blade, or use a blender. Process until mixture is smooth and thick. Transfer to a large pot (or microwave-safe bowl) large enough to hold all of the ingredients; don’t worry if the butter separates. Bring the mixture to a boil on the stovetop (or in the microwave), whisking to combine. Take off the heat.
  3. While the mixture is still hot, add the oats, rice cereal, coconut, almonds, and dried blueberries. Use a large rubber spatula to gently fold the mixture until the wet ingredients evenly coat the dry ingredients. The mixture will be thick. Be gentle so as not to crush the rice cereal.
  4. Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan and, using the bottom of a glass or dry measuring cup, press firmly into an even, compact layer. Bake for 15-18 minutes, until golden brown. Set the pan on a rack and let cool completely, a few hours. (Please do not attempt to cut the bars while still warm, as they will fall apart.)
  5. Use the foil overhang to lift the uncut bars out of the pan and onto a cutting board. Using a large chef’s knife, cut the block into 16 bars. Wrap the bars individually with foil or parchment paper for easy on-the-go snacking, or place them in an airtight container. The bars will keep for up to a week at room temperature.
  6. Note: You'll need about 5 Medjool dates for this recipe but it's best to weigh them if possible, as sizes vary.
  7. Note: For best results, use a smooth and creamy commercial almond butter. (I do not recommend all-natural or chunky almond butter.)
  8. Freezer-Friendly Instructions: The granola bars can be frozen for up to 3 months. Let them cool completely and store in an airtight container separating layers with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Before serving, remove them from the container and let them come to room temperature.

Nutrition Information

Powered by Edamam

  • Serving size: 1 bar
  • Calories: 264
  • Fat: 16 g
  • Saturated fat: 4 g
  • Carbohydrates: 29 g
  • Sugar: 18 g
  • Fiber: 4 g
  • Protein: 5 g
  • Sodium: 113 mg
  • Cholesterol: 11 mg

This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Edamam.com. Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.

Gluten-Free Adaptable Note

To the best of my knowledge, all of the ingredients used in this recipe are gluten-free or widely available in gluten-free versions. There is hidden gluten in many foods; if you're following a gluten-free diet or cooking for someone with gluten allergies, always read the labels of your ingredients to verify that they are gluten-free.

See more recipes:

Reviews & Comments

  • These granola bars are delicious–so much better than anything store-bought! They’ve been a hit with anyone who has tried them.

    I’m not sure what you consider to be “natural” almond butter, but to me, it’s almond butter that is comprised of purely almonds with no added oils, and that’s what I found when I checked the ingredients of the brand you showed in your ingredients photo. I always prefer to use natural nut butters in recipes, so I went ahead and did that here, and I had no issues with the recipe (and again, it seems that you also used a natural, “just almonds” butter, too).

    I did not bring the wet ingredients to a full boil; instead, I just let them heat up until they were a bit more fluid and could be more easily mixed with the other ingredients. I did an initial mix with a spatula but found that finishing the mixing with my hands makes it easier to thoroughly combine the thick concoction. I also found it helpful to oil the underside of the measuring cup used to press down on the mixture when in the pan.

    I did not have any issues with the bars falling apart when cutting them, but I have always made sure that they are completely cool before doing so.

    Definitely going to try some variations of this recipe! I’m thinking peanut butter & chocolate, apricot & pistachio…yum! Thanks for another great recipe!

    • — Rachel on September 6, 2021
    • Reply
  • Not that great. A lot of work for glorified rice crispy treats. Also, too sweet. I would not make these again.

    • — M. Elder on March 6, 2021
    • Reply
  • Hi, this looks great. Can I use fresh blueberries?

    • — Stephen on July 6, 2020
    • Reply
    • Hi Stephen, I’d stick with dried blueberries for this — sorry!

      • — Jenn on July 6, 2020
      • Reply
  • These granola bars are amazing! We were looking for ways to make healthy snacks in our home, and eat less processed/packaged foods, and this recipe was our answer. As others have said, the texture is semi-crunchy, yet chewy. I also like that you can customize it with what you have on-hand or preferences. My daughter requested dried cherry-chocolate next time! Thank you for the excellent recipe!

    • — Kathy on May 18, 2020
    • Reply
  • I made these over the weekend and still can’t get over how good they are! Actually surprised. I have made different recipes before (not ouac) and they were harder and crumbly like a nature valley bar, but these were chewy, crispy with the cereal addition, and stayed that way even after a few days. Only change I made was instead of dried blueberries, which I did not have, I used dried mixed berries that included cherries and strawberries. They were whole so I chopped them up smaller for the bars. I’m definitely going to make again and try the other variations!

    • — Marie on February 18, 2020
    • Reply
  • Hi Jenn, I haven’t made these yet but they look great…except for the coconut, which is an ingredient I just don’t like. Could I sub in more nuts or oats to make up for the coconut?

    • — Linda on February 13, 2020
    • Reply
    • Definitely, as long as you keep the ratios the same (so add an additional 1/2 cup of nuts or oats). Hope you enjoy!

      • — Jenn on February 13, 2020
      • Reply
    • I was not able to get the mixture to “boil”. It stayed solid and I could smell the almond butter burn so I gave up. Was able to mix in the dry ingredients, but the final product was too crumbly to be bars. I have a picky eater, so left out the almonds and coconut, adding a half cup of oats. Could this be the problem?

      • — Crystal on September 22, 2020
      • Reply
      • Hi Crystal, Sorry you had a problem with these. I don’t think subbing oats for the almond and coconut would’ve caused the problem. I haven’t gotten that feedback about these. Did you use natural peanut butter? If so, that may have caused the problem as it tends to be drier.

        • — Jenn on September 25, 2020
        • Reply
      • I dont put mine on the stove but in the microwave because it did seem a bit thick to “boil” . I have never needed it to boil but just kind of melt a bit to mix.

        • — Patty on November 7, 2020
        • Reply
  • Jenn, I love your recipes and your cookbook! Thank you for sharing your talent with us. Do you think these granola bars would work with chopped dried apricots instead of blueberries?

    • — Amanda Woodiel
    • Reply
    • Definitely! You really can choose your favorite dried fruit for these. Hope you enjoy. 🙂

  • Any way to cut down on the sugar and still make them hold together? Looking for a healthy granola bar with less then 10 grams of sugar.

    • Hi Amy, You could try cutting back but since I have tried it myself, I can’t guarantee they will hold together.

Add a Review or Question

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.