Crispy Honey Nut Granola Bars

Crispy and not too sweet, these granola bars are loaded with oats, nuts, coconut, and dried fruit.

Servings: Makes 12 to 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 packed light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon plus 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup crisp rice cereal, such as Rice Krispies
  • 3/4 cup dried fruit, such as cranberries, diced apricots, blueberries, currants, etc.

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 the prepared baking sheet. Place in the oven and toast for 7 minutes. Add the coconut and toss well with a rubber spatula, then place back in the oven to cook for 4 to 5 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-high heat. Whisk and bring to a rapid boil, then turn off the heat and set aside.
  4. Once the oat mixture is done, remove it from the oven and reduce the heat to 300°F. Combine the oat mixture, honey mixture, rice cereal, and dried fruit in a large bowl and toss well. (Reserve the aluminum foil.)
  5. Use the reserved foil to line a 9x13-inch baking dish, then spray the foil with nonstick cooking spray. Turn the granola bar mixture out into the prepared baking dish and spread evenly, patting down with a spatula. Be sure the heat is reduced to 300°F, then bake until lightly golden, 20 to 23 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool completely, 1 to 1½ hours. Use the foil overhang to transfer the bars to a cutting board, then use a large, sharp knife to cut into rectangles. Store the bars in a single layer in an airtight container, or wrap the bars individually in aluminum foil, for up to a week at room temperature.
  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

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  • Per serving (16 servings)
  • Serving size: 1 bar
  • Calories: 140
  • Fat: 7g
  • Saturated fat: 3g
  • Carbohydrates: 19g
  • Sugar: 12g
  • Fiber: 2g
  • Protein: 2g
  • Sodium: 60mg
  • Cholesterol: 4mg