Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Forget the Quaker Granola Bars! These are better!

Last week I posted a recipe for chewy granola bars and mentioned that I had another recipe that I wanted to try, but hadn't had the opportunity yet.  Well, my mom heard me talking about them, and decided to surprise us with a batch.  We tried them yesterday and they are awesome!

Granola bars are one of the snacks I miss.  Due to our son's peanut and tree nut allergy, we can't purchase them at the store.  These granola bars are similar to Quaker, but don't have all of the extra fillers and are crispier.  We initially thought a batch made way too many that we'd have to freeze some, but we can't keep our hands off of them!

This recipe is for chocolate chip, but I'm sure you could add some dried fruit as well and play around with it.  They are really quite healthy and definitely going to be a staple around our house.  My oldest son loved them, so I added one to his lunch today as a treat.  

Chewy Chocolate Chip Granola Bars
from Farmgirl Gourmet

2 cups crispy rice cereal
2 1/2 cups quick cooking oats
1/3 cup honey (local is best)
1/4 cup light brown sugar
5 T. unsalted butter
1 t. vanilla
3 T. mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 200 degrees.  Spray 9x13 pan with cooking spray and set aside (I am going to try laying down parchment paper and leaving an overlay instead next time).  In a large bowl, add the crispy rice and oats.  Mix to combine and set aside.  In a small saucepan, add the honey, brown sugar, and butter and bring to a simmer.  Heat for 3 minutes until it becomes syrupy and remove from heat.  Add the vanilla and pour over the rice and oat mixture.  Stir well to coat and pour into the prepared baking pan.  Lay a piece of parchment paper over the pan and press the oat mixture down.  Sprinkle with the chocolate chips and press down again.  Bake at 200 for 25 minutes.  Turn off the heat and allow to remain in the oven for 2 hours.  Invert onto a cutting board (or if using parchment paper, pull out of pan).  Cut into bars and store in an airtight container up to a week.

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