Chewy Chocolate Chip Granola Bars

Tested & Perfected Recipes

These chewy, crispy no-bake chocolate chip granola bars are easy to make — and they put all those store-bought bars to shame.

granola bars

Chocolate chip granola bars are a staple in my pantry, but between my husband, my kids, and my kids’ hungry friends, I can’t seem to keep enough of them in the house. So I figured it was time to try and make them from scratch, and maybe even sneak in some health food. After many trials, I finally cracked the code and came up with a version that puts all those store-bought bars to shame. What’s more, they’re no-bake and take only ten minutes to make.

What You’ll Need To Make Chocolate Chip Granola Bars

Be sure to use quick-cooking oats, which are rolled oats that have been coarsely chopped. Regular old-fashioned oats are too coarse and chewy for this recipe and cause the bars to fall apart. If you don’t have any quick-cooking oats in your pantry, you can make your own by pulsing regular oatmeal in the food processor a few times.

The nice thing about these bars is that they’re versatile. If you don’t like chocolate chips, you can use raisins or cranberries. If you’re not a fan of almonds, you can throw in some unsalted sunflower seeds instead. Aside from the oats and Rice Krispies (those are a must), as long as you keep the ratio of wet to dry ingredients the same, you can substitute just about anything you like.

How To Make Chocolate Chip Granola Bars

Begin by combining the butter, brown sugar and honey in a large pan.

Bring it to a boil, then let it bubble over low heat for a few minutes to thicken slightly.

Off the heat, stir in the salt and vanilla extract.

Then add the oats, crispy rice cereal, almonds, and flax meal (or wheat germ).

Fold the mixture with a rubber spatula until evenly combined.

Transfer the granola bar mixture to a 9 x 13-inch pan lined with aluminum foil.

Press the mixture lightly with a rubber spatula to flatten, then sprinkle the chocolate chips over top. Use the spatula to press the chips firmly into place and compact the mixture into the pan as much as possible. (The reason you don’t mix the chips in is that they’ll melt.)

Place the pan in the refrigerator for 1-1/2 -2 hours, until the bars are cool. Then use the foil overhang to lift the bars out of the pan and transfer to a cutting board. Using a sharp knife, cut into rectangles.

Keep the bars in an airtight container in the refrigerator; if you have to stack them, be sure to use parchment paper or foil in between the layers, otherwise, they’ll crumble and stick. Enjoy!

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Chewy Chocolate Chip Granola Bars

These chewy, crispy no-bake chocolate chip granola bars are easy to make — and they put all those store-bought bars to shame.

Servings: 18 bars
Cook Time: 10 Minutes
Total Time: 2 Hours

Ingredients

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • Heaping 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups quick-cooking/instant oats, such as Quaker Quick 1-Minute Oats (do not use regular old-fashioned oats)
  • 1-3/4 cups crispy rice cereal, such as Rice Krispies
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds
  • 1/4 cup flax meal or wheat germ
  • 1/3 cup mini chocolate chips (or to taste)

Instructions

  1. Line a 9 x 13-inch baking pan with aluminum foil. Spray the foil lightly with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a large pot, combine the butter, brown sugar and honey. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly. Lower the heat and simmer until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is slightly thickened, about 2 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the vanilla and salt.
  3. Add the oats, rice cereal, almonds and flax meal (or wheat germ) to the pan and fold with a rubber spatula until well combined.
  4. Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan and press down lightly with a rubber spatula to even out. Sprinkle the miniature chocolate chips over top, adding more or less to suit your taste, and press down firmly with the spatula so the chips stick.The mixture should be tightly compacted in the pan. Place the pan in the refrigerator for 1-1/2 - 2 hours to cool.
  5. Use the foil overhang to transfer the uncut bars to a cutting board. Using a sharp knife, cut into rectangles. Store the bars in an airtight container in the refrigerator. If you have to stack them, be sure to use parchment paper or foil in between the layers, otherwise they'll stick together and fall apart.
  6. Note: If you are substituting dried fruit for the chocolate chips, mix it in along with the other ingredients as opposed to sprinkling over top.
  7. 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, move them to the refrigerator and store there.

Nutrition Information

Powered by Edamam

  • Serving size: 1 bar
  • Calories: 187
  • Fat: 8g
  • Saturated fat: 3g
  • Carbohydrates: 26g
  • Sugar: 12g
  • Fiber: 3g
  • Protein: 4g
  • Sodium: 21mg
  • Cholesterol: 11mg

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.

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Reviews & Comments

  • I absolutely love these granola bars. Followed the recipe exactly and they came out perfect! My husband loved them as well. I will be trying your other recipes as well. Thanks!

  • These are delicious, followed the recipe as written! I smooshed the mixture into a 9×9 pan and it worked out great for the size. I put half back in the freezer, I’m hoping they are good that way too!

  • Can i use corn cereals instead of rice krispies? It’s too hard to find krispies in the market. Thank you.

    • — GAY ANNE RONDUEN
    • Reply
    • Hi Gay, Are you referring to something like cornflakes? If so, unfortunately, I don’t think you’ll get the right texture with those. You can use more oats in place of the Rice Krispies. They will work, but the texture will be different.

  • I absolutely love these! They have become a staple in my kitchen. I wanted to find an easy and tasty recipe for muesli bars and these granola bars are my go to. I’ve even made them with the help of my 18 month old nephew. The recipe makes so many that it (usually) lasts for the working week. My family and friends love them too! Sometimes I add chia seeds to it for the health benefits. I highly recommend this recipe!

  • So delicious! Everyone loves! Thank you!

  • I’m really Excited to make these for my kids for the school year. I read some reviews saying they’re super sweet and I try to keep things moderately sweet for my kids. If I wanted to omit the sugar do I need to replace it with anything else? Thanks!!

    • Hi Talya, You might try reducing the sugar or honey and adding some peanut butter — this will help them stick together. Hope they enjoy!

  • I haven’t bought granola bars from the store since making these! My husband and kids are crazy for them!

  • Love these, kids love these, thanks! I replaced brown sugar with almond butter to cut down on sugar. Teenager with a sweet tooth asked if I could make these all the time.

    • How much almond butter do you use?

  • These are amazing! My normally picky daughter loves them. Love the simple ingredients, too. We keep them in an airtight container in the fridge…but they don’t last long enough to have a problem keeping them fresh!!

  • Hi! I love your recipes and many are staples in my home. I want to try these for my 3 year old. Is there a substitution I could use for the flax meal/wheat germ. It is not an ingredient I usually have on hand.

    • Sure, Melissa – go ahead and substitute more oats or cereal. Hope your little one enjoys!

  • I have made these numerous times. First couple times was with the almonds but I changed those to pumpkin seeds so that my son could have them in his classroom. Easy and delicious!

  • These Are fantastic! My kids love them! I have also brought them to work many times and I’m always asked for the recipe. The only thing I’ve added is 1/4 of a cup of Shredded sweetened coconut.

  • DELICIOUS! Best granola bars hands down. I will never buy a box again. These are so easy & taste amazing. My family devoured them. Love your site & recipes Jenn – you’re amazing!!!

  • These were fantastic! Thank you so much for the recipe! I added chia seeds to the mix and a mixture of chocolate and peanut butter chips to the top. Excellent!

  • Hi Jen, I live in Tokyo and can’t get Rice Krispies – believe it or not – so I’m wondering what else I can use as a substitute here! P.S. I LOVE YOUR SITE!!! Thank you….

    • Glad you like the site, Betsy! You can use more oats in place of the Rice Krispies but, unfortunately, the texture won’t be quite the same.

      • Have you tried ordering it from amazon? Just a thought. I find many ingredients from back home (Brazil) there as I live in the US. Good luck!

        • — Nina S. on January 5, 2020
        • Reply
  • Yum! I made these two days ago exactly as the recipe was written. I accidentally left them in the fridge overnight and they broke quite a bit when I tried to cut them, but they were delicious. My teenage daughters devoured them. Today I made another batch and switched a few ingredients to try and make them a little healthier. I used coconut sugar instead of brown and I used some chia seeds and sunflower seeds and cut back on the Rice Krispies. Honestly, I didn’t really like the sunflower seeds but the chia seeds and coconut sugar worked great. I also chilled them exactly two hours and they cut perfectly. So much better than the processed bars we’ve always eaten!! Thank you.

  • The best copy cat recipe ever!!!!

  • Can you use granola cereal to make these?

    • I wouldn’t recommend that here- sorry!

  • Wow these are the best things ever!!!! I did a batch and and wish I did a double. It was so fast and easy. But best of all the kids love them. I did not add any almonds because I will be sending them to school. If they make it in the fridge that long. Also next time I will be adding raisins to the mix and just know it will be great.
    I will be adding this recipe to my weekly food prep. 5 stars for sure!!!!

  • I was looking for a healthy snack to pack went out for a hike or mid morning well I found it this is absolutely delicious anytime of the day better than any protein bar snack I could buy. I have made this for my friends it is so tasty they don’t even know you’re eating something that’s good for them I did leave out the chocolate chips and it tasted delicious anyway.

  • These were delicious and held together well the first time I made them. The second time I tried to cut back on the honey and they didn’t hold up as well. Is there a substitute I can use that isn’t peanut butter?

    • Hi Sarah, As you learned the second time around, the honey really helps to hold the ingredients together. The only substitute that comes to mind is peanut butter (or other nut butter) – sorry I can’t be more helpful!

    • Can I add peanut butter to increase the protein?

      • — Andrea on October 1, 2020
      • Reply
      • Yes, If you want to add some peanut butter, just cut the equivalent amount of butter back. Enjoy!

        • — Jenn on October 1, 2020
        • Reply
  • These were easy to make and I loved sending them to school for my daughters snack. The are gone and my girls are asking for more!

    • — Celeste Fischer
    • Reply
  • Our family adores this recipe! We love experimenting with different combinations beyond the chocolate chips and almonds. Recently made it with dried cranberries, pistachios and white chocolate chips – delicious!

  • These were easy to make and the perfect texture! My only complaint is that they were too, too sweet. Any way to make them less sweet while still keeping that perfect consistency? Could I add peanut butter as a replacement for some of the honey?

    • I think that would work well, Sharon. Please let me know how they turn out if you try it that way – could be a new recipe :).

  • I followed the recipe exactly but my granola wouldn’t stay intact even after refrigerating it, I ended up with clusters. Other than that, the recipe was still delicious and could probably make it into a granola cluster cereal like you see at the store.

    • I found that straight from the fridge these were quite brittle and broke apart when I tried to cut them. Once they were back to room temp. they cut nice and clean. I keep them in an airtight container in the cupboard and they are delicious!

  • My kids loved these and my husband even broke his atkins diet to eat a few. Mine were a little crumbly (I kept them in the refrigerator). Any suggestions on how to help them hold their shape? And, if I want to add peanut butter do I need to make any other changes to the recipe?

    • — Joanne Faulkner
    • Reply
    • Glad everyone in your family enjoys these (even your husband :)! Did you store them with foil or parchment paper between the layers? If not they’ll stick to each other and get crumbly. If you want to add some peanut butter, just cut the equivalent amount of butter back.

  • I have made this recipe at least 10 times now and I feel like I have finally perfected it to my liking! This recipe is perfect as, but we have a bit allergy so we don’t add nuts and I have a really hard time finding “nut-free” seeds where I am. So instead of almonds I use help hearts and I use both flax seeds and wheat germ. I also find adding the chocolate chips to the mixture before spreading it in the pan works better than sprinkling them on top. Some melt but it’s ok! I agree with the review that stated the temp to cook the sugar and butter mixture to. Otherwise, if it’s not heated high enough it doesn’t seem to hold together well. I love this recipe…I make it almost once a week. My three kids devour them. I’d like to experiment with healthier sweet options but for not I’m not too bothered.

  • I have coconut sugar in the house. I don’t like the taste of it for tea. Can I use it in place of the dark brown sugar ?? Maybe half and half. I want to use up that coconut sugar. What to you recommend?

    • Hi Debbie, I’ve never made these with coconut sugar, but a few other readers have commented that they have and have gotten good results. Keep in mind, though, that if you’re not crazy about the taste of it with your tea, you may have the same experience here.

  • Dear Jennifer, your recipes never fail me. This past weekend was our Canada Day 150 year celebration and I wanted to try a few new recipes for the occasion. I tried the Moroccan carrot chickpea salad and the whipped feta dip. Both were fabulous as always. Thanks for making our Canada Day even better. I have been a fan of your recipes for awhile now and will rush out to buy your cookbook when it comes out!!! Cheers, Tammy

    • — Tammy macfarlane
    • Reply
  • The honey was overpowering and the whole thing was sickeningly sweet. Much sweeter than when you get from a box in my opinion. I will try again with less sugar

  • Wow! The best tasting granola bar recipe ever and so easy to make. I can’t keep enough stocked, my entire family wants them for breakfast, lunch and dessert. Made 4 batches in a week. Added sunflower and chia seeds for health benefits. Thank you Once Upon a Chef! I will be trying more of your recipes.

    • — Connie Shew Koh
    • Reply
  • Altered recipe as follows: used half honey/half light corn syrup; omitted almonds; used 1/4 cup crushed graham crackers instead of flax; added zest of three small limes; used chopped white chocolate instead of mini chocolate chips. Bars were chewy and crumbly – good flavor, though very sticky-sweet. Can’t really rate the original recipe accurately, though.

  • My son loves these granola bars and we make several batches every month. Once in a while we add craisens.

    • — Melissa Storms
    • Reply
  • I made these for my daugher-in-law because she’s pregnant and wants to snack on healthy food. She loved them!

  • These are so delicious and very easy to adapt. I omitted almonds (due to allergy) and added chopped dried apricots and a little shredded coconut. I forgot to add the vanilla but added two pinches of cinnamon instead. Everything turned out perfectly. Thank you for the recipe, Jennifer!

  • Hello,

    I want to say I LOVE these bars! I make them all the time in big batches. One thing I have done is worked out the temp of the sugar, honey butter mix to get just the right firmness of bars, 255F. Because I make these in x4 size, I have lots of people to feed and they freeze beautifully, boiling time just didn’t work.

    On another note I changed the nuts to all seeds, pumpkin, sunflower hemp hearts etc, to make these nut and gluten free!

    Thanks again!

  • I’m making this for my class I hope they like this WISH ME LUCK!

  • These are fantastic. I made these for my son and his friends who were playing hockey outside in the driveway. I put the bars out with some watermelon. I went back in to get some water and they were gone! Wow..they asked for more. What a great and easy to make treat!
    Thank u!

  • If I wanted to add protein into these, what else would need to be adjusted? The protein I use has 25g of protein per 2 tablespoons. I’d like for each bar to have 25g of protein each. Thank you!

    • Hi Lauren, I’m not sure that would work with this recipe as it sounds like you’d need to use over 2 cups of protein powder to get to 25 g of protein per bar. While the recipe is fairly flexible with subbing the dry ingredients with others of your choosing, that amount would really change the flavor (and possibly the texture) of the bars.

  • I followed the recipe to a T and loved every morsel. Thank you!

    • — Jessica Garneau
    • Reply
  • I wanted to love these, but they are just too sweet. They do taste like store bought granola bars if that is what you are going for, but I have always found those way too sweet. I will try making them again with less sugar and see how it goes.

  • I wanted to love these but I think they were just a little too sweet and maybe too chewy /soft for me. The honey was maybe what seemed overpowering. I plan to make the crispy ones on the website. What I did like is the wheat germ and Rice Krispies.

    • We’ve made this recipe several more times with less of the sweet stuff and much better. The first time I made it I neglected to put in the fridge . . . So don’t skip that part. I am now upgrading my rating.

      • If honey seems a little overpowering, try Rice Malt Syrup. I prefer it when I don’t want the strong honey taste.

  • awesome. My kids loved them

  • These were so delicious and the best part is I know what is in them. If I wanted to make these with raisins, pecans and coconut, would I decrease a dry ingredient by the commensurate amount of coconut that I am adding ?

    • Glad you liked them, Terry! Yes, you can use whatever add-ins you want; you just need to keep the ratio of wet and dry ingredients the same.

  • Used Quakertown granola to make chocolate chip granola bàrs. After letting the granola cool I tried to cut the granola,but they crummbled. Is there anything I can do.?

    • Hi Barbara, Are you saying that you used granola in place of the oats? If so, I think that could be the problem.

  • Are there measurements?

    • Hi Emma, It sounds like you are just looking at the portion of the page that has the pictures with some instructions underneath. If you scroll down a bit to under the pictures, you’ll find the full recipe. Alternatively, at the very top of the page, you can click the “recipe” button right under the recipe title.

  • Was looking for a different granola bar recipe & found yours.
    Normally bake the recipe I use so was a little hesitant on how this would hold together. No need to have worried!
    Delicious with the mini chocolate chips (even though some fell off). Next time will use dried fruit for a change of flavour.
    Believe it or not, I forgot about your site even though I have made several recipes! Now that I’m back, I have problems getting off! So many delicious sounding recipes!

  • You are correct, Jennifer. These Chocolate Chip Granola Bars are truly addictive, but oh so yummy! Am loving many of your recipes and looking forward to your new book.
    Jayne

  • I have made these a bunch of times and they always come out great. I have made them following the recipe as written, and I’ve done several variations – we like almonds & raisin with a little cinnamon, pecans and dried cranberries, and dried cherries with little bits of dark chocolate. As long as you keep the wet/dry ratio as written, they always come out great! I always make a few batches of these to bring over to friends houses after they have a baby – gives them a somewhat healthy treat to munch on and feed to their older kids.

  • Hi! I ran out of flax meal. Can I leave that out without ruining them?

    • — Stephanie Travis
    • Reply
    • Definitely- as long is you replace it with an equivalent amount of one of the other dry ingredients.

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