Crispy Honey Nut Granola Bars

Tested & Perfected Recipes

Imagine a cross between a granola bar & a Rice Krispy Treat — this is it. Wonderfully light and crispy!

Granola bars 14

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 light and crispy. If you can imagine what a cross between a granola bar and Rice Krispy Treat would taste like, this is it.

These bars are perfect for breakfast on the go, family outings, road trips or after school snacks. Once you try them, you’ll never go back to the boxed stuff again. For more granola bar inspiration, check out my Chewy Chocolate Chip Granola Bars and my Almond, Blueberry & Date Granola Bars. Enjoy!

Crispy Honey Nut Granola Bars

Imagine a cross between a granola bar & a Rice Krispy Treat — this is it. Wonderfully light and crispy!

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°F. 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°F. Combine 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 9x13-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°F). 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. Note: 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. Note: Be sure your oven is fully preheated before toasting nuts; the initial blast of heat to preheat the oven can burn them.
  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

  • Per serving (16 servings)
  • Serving size: 1 bar
  • Calories: 140
  • Fat: 7g
  • Saturated fat: 3g
  • Carbohydrates: 19g
  • Sugar: 12g
  • Fiber: 2g
  • Protein: 2g
  • Sodium: 40mg
  • Cholesterol: 4mg

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 have heard that heating honey makes it poisoness. Can I use maple instead of honey ?

    • — Sheetal Mehta on March 31, 2019
    • Reply
    • Sure, Sheetal. Enjoy!

      • — Jenn on March 31, 2019
      • Reply
  • Tried this and was NOT a fan. Where it says to bake everything again is a total mistake it made it like a friggin rock. I tried another recipe that had a similar process but you let poured the oats and honey mixture together, let cool for 5 minutes and then let it
    Chill for 1 1/2 – 2 hours and then you could cut them into bars. This one made a mess when trying to cut.

    • — Peachy on February 9, 2019
    • Reply
  • Love this recipe! It’s on regular rotation in our home. Thanks Jenn for another perfect recipe:)

    • — Viv on January 28, 2019
    • Reply
  • Hi
    Can you use the quick 1 minute rolled oats instead of the regular oats?

    • — Bonnie on December 16, 2018
    • Reply
    • Sure, Bonnie – the texture will just be a bit different.

      • — Jenn on December 16, 2018
      • Reply
  • I made it yesterday with using corn syrup instead of brown sugar and reduced butter. It is very crunchy and yummy. I have tried many recipes before but the results left a lot to be desired. Your recipe is really fantastic! It stirs me up to make granola again. Many thanks!

    • — Janet on November 12, 2018
    • Reply
  • I just found your website and am super excited about all the fantastic recipes. I have been making these bars over the last few weeks for my husband and son to take to work (they are builders). But my husband has asked if I can make them so they are not as hard. Can you suggest a way to do this? I figured maybe reduce the baking time or even the amount of sugar….

    Thanks again.

    • — Anita on April 27, 2018
    • Reply
    • Glad you happened upon the blog and that your “boys” are enjoying the granola bars! Yes, if you’re finding them to be a bit hard, next time cut back on the baking time just a little. Also, be careful not to cook the honey mixture for too long as that can contribute to a harder texture as well.

      • — Jenn on April 28, 2018
      • Reply
  • I made these bars yesterday. There are so good and very easy. No more commercial bars for me. I’m glad I found you. Looking forward to trying more recipes !

    • — Damita G on March 30, 2018
    • Reply
  • These are the best granola bars ever! Easy enough for toddlers to hold/eat and flavorful enough for kids & grown ups to enjoy. I feel great serving these to my family knowing that they are preservative-free and wholesome.

    I make a few adjustments for our family’s dietary preferences. I omit the coconut, use puffed brown rice, and reduce the amount of brown sugar. I have not yet, but plan to experiment with adding flax seeds for an additional nutrition boost, and powdered peanut butter for a fun flavor twist.

    • — Andrea on November 28, 2017
    • Reply
  • Exactly what I was searching for- Crunchy, not too sweet and delicious.

  • Question: Why do you use foil instead of parchment paper? Thanks!

    • The foil overhang that is around the edge of the pan makes it very easy to transfer the bars in one piece to a cutting board. Hope you enjoy!

      • Makes sense. Thanks!

  • Fantastic, just like your other recipes I’ve tried, Jenn!
    Perfect amount of sweetness!

    Thanks so much for sharing your talent with all of us! 🙂

  • Hi, can coconut oil be substituted for the butter?

    • Hi Marni, I’ve never made these with coconut oil, but another reader commented that they did and were happy with the results. Hope you enjoy!

      • Hi am curious on what I could swap out the butter for as well besides coconut oil. Any suggestions?

        • Hi Jo, you could try replacing the butter with nut butter, but I’m not 100% sure how that will affect the texture of the bars.

  • Hi jenn,
    These are delicious! I did want to ask you if the heating time of the honey mixture might be a variable? My bars didnt hold together as well as I would like, could boiling the honey help? I’ve seen a few other recipes that use a candy thermometer…….

    • Glad you like them! The hotter you get the honey mixture, the better the bars will hold together. Just be careful not to cook for mixture for too long or the granola bars will be too hard.

      • Ok, confession time….if you just let them cool COMPLETELY, instead of scarfing them up too soon, they hold together perfectly. Just the right amount of chewy and crunchy!

        • I guess patience really is a virtue :).

  • Is it ok to leave out the coconut if you don’t like it or will the quantities of the other ingredients have to be altered too?

    • Hi Hannah, You can replace any of the add-ins, as long as you keep the proportions the same. You can just use more oats or rice cereal or add in something different like chia seeds. Hope you enjoy!

  • Just delicious. I stopped buying commercial bars years ago when I realised how much sugar and junk were in them. With these, a few tablespoons of brown sugar and a half cup of honey to 1-1/2 cups of oats plus added ingredients is really not too bad, in my opinion. I can’t wait to experiment with different fruit and nuts – a pistachio cranberry version will be a hit at Christmas, and when my son starts school in a few years I will make a nut-free version with sunflower seeds and dried fruit. Your recipes are no-fail, Jenn! I haven’t made one that I didn’t love.

  • We live on an island where it’s difficult to find good cereal bars. I therefore wanted to try making my own cereal bars. Best granola recipe I found.

    I substitute the oat and rice crisps for more nuts and dried fruits. I also only use honey and a bit of vanilla extract and they are absolutely delicious.

  • Hey Jen,
    what a great recipe and what a great site. I converted your recipe into baked apricot coconut wheat pop bars and they were a huge hit with all my friends and fellow students! Easy student food that takes the wheat pops up one level (or 10) 🙂
    Greetings from the student kitchen,
    Johanna

  • These look delicious, but my daughter has a tree nut allergy and doesn’t like coconut. Can you suggest any replacements that would work, i.e. sunflower seeds? Would chia seeds work?? Thanks so much for all of your recipes. I’m a big fan of your website!

    • Hi Katherine, You can replace any of the add-ins, as long as you keep the proportions the same. I think a combination of sunflower seeds and chia seeds would work (or even more oats and rice cereal). Hope you all enjoy them, and please let me know how they turn out! 🙂

  • I would really like to make these but I am in Europe – do you know metric quantities I should use?

    • Hi Cathy, I’ve just updated the recipe with metric quantities. Just look for the little toggle switch under the recipe name. Sorry for the delay and hope you enjoy them!

  • These taste delicious, but turned out very hard cooked at the exact temp & time noted in the recipe. I could not cut them with the knife after cooling. I finally decided to break the mixture up & use as granola!

    • Sorry to hear they were so hard, but sounds like you got some tasty granola out of it! Next time, try cooking them for a slightly shorter period of time (maybe your oven runs a bit hot).

      • You also may have overcooked the syrup before coating the nut and oat mix and baking….

  • Very nice! They hold together BUT they are not too hard. I have some puffed grain cereal I may try in a future batch. I added pepitas and a bit more coconut without adjusting the liquid amount and they turned out fine. Quite tasty, probably don’t have to worry about them going stale…

    • OK – these are SO good. Making double batches now and it lasts mere days!

  • Is it ok to use salted butter and omit the 1/4 tsp salt? Also, dark brown sugar instead of light brown sugar?

    • Connie, I’ve never made the granola bars that way, but I think it should be perfectly fine. Feel free to taste the mixture before you put it into the oven to make sure it’s to your liking. Good luck!

  • Made these for my daughter’s water polo team as part of an after practice breakfast. The girls raved about them throughout the day and asked if we could have a team bonding event where we make dozens of bars. I have already been asked to make an additional batch for the next morning practice. Thank you for this delicious and very easy to follow recipe.
    *I made one small substitution only (pecans for walnuts)

  • Could you please publish the nutritional information?

    Thank you.

    • Done! It is under the recipe 🙂

  • How many calories in each bar

    • Hi Leona, I added the nutritional data beneath the recipe. Hope that helps!

  • Delicious~

  • Hi there, these look amazing and from all the reviews I am definitely going to make. I have a pantry full of nuts, oats and dried fruit and wondered if the recipe MUST use rice krispies?

    • Hi Sarah Ann, You can leave them out and replace with more oats, but the bars won’t have the same wonderful texture.

      • Hey, Sarah Ann,
        I make my bars with wheat pops, since they’re more common to find in Europe. However, you might want to use the unsugared ones because the regular ones are covered in honey and that kind of drives the sweetness over the top. Also, crushing them just a little in a plastic bag before adding them together with the dry ingredients makes the bars stick together way better I found. I hope that this might be helpful in some way as well 🙂

  • perfect!! made this, blogged and linked you!! thanks…

  • Is there a substitute for coconut?

    • Hi Tori, You can increase any other ingredient in the recipe by the same amount.

  • I have been experimenting with granola bar recipes due to their high cost and to get the ingredients back to basic. I mainly alter them by cutting sugars/honey (I have slightly elevated cholesterol and my MD recommended cutting sugar) and substituting some ingredients for what I have on hand. For this recipe I cut the brown sugar in half, used all whole almonds at 1 and 1/2 cup, substituted a flake and cluster cereal for the rice puff cereal, and left out the salt. I added 1/2 cup dried low sugar cranberries.

  • Hi, can I replace the honey with maple syrup? Thanks.

    • Hi KK, Unfortunately, I don’t think the bars will hold together as well with maple syrup.

  • These granola bars were exactly what I was looking for except they are WAY to sweet. I spread some Wow butter on top (peanut-free peanut butter) and they are perfect. Could you tell me the best way to add some peanut butter into the recipe and still have them come out so nice – either as just an addition or substituting for some of the brown sugar or honey? Thanks!!

    • Hi Ann, You could try adding a few tablespoons in place of the brown sugar or honey. I wouldn’t alter the recipe too much though or the bars might not hold together as well.

  • Oh and used evaborated cane juice instead of brown

    • Oh and brown rice cereal. Lol.

  • Best granola to date. Did pecans instead of walnuts and added dates that I chopped. They do fall apart a bit so I may either press them down more or just use as loose

  • I made my first batch today and used pecans instead of walnuts, sunflower seeds instead of almonds, and I used gluten free cocoa rice krispies instead of normal rice krispies. I also added raisins and dried cranberries. I only cooked it for 15 minutes, but my oven tends to cook hot. It was fantastic, I LOVED IT! Serving it tomorrow at a family lunch as bite size granola squares

  • Can the butter be replaced with a nut butter? Also, as there is honey in the recipe I would look to leave out (or reduce) the brown sugar would this affect the texture?

    • Hi Lauren, You can play around with the recipe a little but it will definitely affect the texture. The honey and sugar act as glue and the butter keeps the bars from being too hard. Sorry!

  • Can you tell me please if the grola bars fall apart. I want to make bars that hold together well. Thank you

    • Hi Linda, These hold together well.

  • This recipe was wonderful. I subbed unsalted peanuts instead of almonds and walnuts and added FD cherries. I also used Frosted Rice Krispies. You are right, you pretty much and mix and match. Now I am hooked. Thanks

  • My granola bars doesn’t turn crispy?? Why
    So??

    • Hi Rizwana, Did you make this recipe?

      • No I didnt made this recipe. I made some other recipe of granola bar.
        Ok next time i will try ur recipe.

  • Can these bars be frozen?

    I made them last night for a brunch bar this morning! I used pecans and wheat-free oats and rice cereal. I also substituted maple sugar for brown sugar. I sprinkled some dark chocolate chips on top before baking.

    I’m very pleased with how they turned out! A definite keeper for the old recipe box!

    • Hi Louise, Glad the bars turned out! It is fine to freeze them.

  • Thank you for this delicious recipe! I have been experimenting with Vegan recipes so used coconut oil and palm sugar in the honey mixture. I also added some hemp hearts. I was thinking if I make them for my grand kids (who are not allowed to bring nuts to school) I would sub out the nuts for seeds (pumpkin, sunflower, sesame). Such a versatile recipe… I’ll be using this again!

  • This looks great but I have a question. What can I use instead of nuts, allergy reasons. I want the same crunch but not sure what the substitutes could be.

    • Try adding sunflower seeds, that’s what I did.

  • These are addictive! Thanks for sharing. I’m going to enjoy trying endless variations for my family. So much better (and cheaper) than store bought. My kids typically eat some kind of granola bars daily, as do I, so we have lot’s of opportunities to try these.

  • How long will these keep?

    • I’d say they keep for about a week as long as you keep them tightly covered.

  • These are great! I omitted the coconut since it was the only ingredient I didn’t have at home. For my husband and I they are a bit too sweet. Next time I will try them without the brown sugar and butter and add peanut butter instead. Can’t wIt to try more of your recipes!

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

  • Can you make these without coconut?

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

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

  • 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!

    • 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 🙂

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

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

  • 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!

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

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

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

  • 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.

  • 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!

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

  • 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!

  • 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!

    • — Beverly Doerflein
    • Reply
  • 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!

  • Sooo good. Thanks for the recipe!

  • Jenn,

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

  • Thank you for sharing, these were a hit!

  • 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!!

  • 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

  • These are my go-to granola bar recipe!

  • 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!!

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

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

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

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

  • 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!

  • 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!

  • 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!

  • 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!

  • 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!

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

  • 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.

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

  • 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 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!

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