Monday, May 24, 2010

Chewy Granola Bars

Whenever I walk past the granola and breakfast bar section at the grocery, my heart skips a beat. Okay, well not really, but I absolutely love granola bars. They are perfect for Sunday baseball games (my husband plays) and if I don't feel like cutting up an apple for a snack during work. Although they are seemingly a simple snack, I have always been to intimidated to try to make them. The one thing that scared me were the oats in them. I have heard that there is a big difference between instant and traditional so I had to search far and wide for a recipe I liked.

Instead of chocolate, I used our favorite candy: Reeses Pieces! This was a wonderful substitution and was not too overbearing. You can still taste the juiciness of the raisins and sweetness of the almonds in every bite as well. This is one recipe I will be saving and making over and over .. and not just because I bought the oats in bulk. The only change I think I will make is less honey and more rice krispies instead of oats. I liked the crunch of the cereal but there wasn't much of it. Also, the bars were REALLY sweet .. like I need a dentist sweet. I also wanted to give a big thanks to my friend Angie who let me use her oven to make these since we are tiling our kitchen (slowly) and all of our appliances are in the family room.

Chewy Granola Bars
Adapted from: Big City Cooking, originally Adventures in my Freezer

3.5 cups traditional oats
1 cup rice krispies
1 cup flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup melted butter
1 mashed banana
1/2 cup honey
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup candy pieces (we chose Reeses Pieces)
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup slivered almonds
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Mix all ingredients except last three (candy, raisins and nuts) in large mixing bowl until well blended. Add in candy, raisins and nuts and mix well. Press the granola into a greased 9x13 pan and bake at 325 degrees for 18-22 minutes, until golden-brown. Allow to cool for 10 minutes and slice into bars. Once completely cooled, remove from pan. For ease of convenience, I wrapped mine individually (two for my hubby) with saran wrap and kept in an airtight container.

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