Can you believe it’s already back to school time? This summer flew by for us, jam packed with camps and time with friends and family. Those carefree days and late nights for the little ones have come to an end. And as their minds drift back to the classroom, I’m looking forward to actually being able to get something done start to finish, and buckling down with work responsibilities.
Enter these crunchy little granola bars. I could have easily called these Grab ‘n Go Morning Bars or Infinitely Adaptable Granola Bars… they are just as great to toss into a kid’s lunchbox as they are to take with you to the office or just refuel you midday. Many granola bar recipes are packed with refined sugar- I’ve tamped this down, replacing it with honey (or use maple syrup or agave, if you prefer), so this is a snack you can feel good about giving your kids, your spouse, and yourself!
I chose to go with the classic, kid-approved roasted peanuts and chocolate chip combo, but at the bottom of the recipe I give lots of ideas for variation. Many schools now have rules about bringing tree nuts or peanuts into the lunchroom, so sunflower seeds make a great alternative if you need to be allergen aware.
See the recipe step by step…
Back to School Granola Bars
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter or use coconut oil to make these vegan
- 2 cups rolled oats
- ½ cup ground flaxseed
- ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅓ cup honey
- 2 tablespoons coconut sugar or use regular brown sugar
- ½ cup unsalted peanuts or substitute other seed/nut, see ideas below
- ⅓ cup mini chocolate chips or substitute dried fruit, see ideas below
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Butter and line a 9 x 9 inch pan with parchment paper or generously butter the pan.
- In a small saucepan, melt the butter over low heat. Add honey and sugar and stir over low heat for another two to three minutes. Remove from the heat.
- Place the oats in a bowl with the flaxseed, salt and cinnamon and stir to combine. Pour over the honey / butter mixture and stir until the oats are thoroughly coated. Add in your mix-ins, then press into the prepared pan (if using chocolate chips, let the mixture cool for a few minutes before adding them so they don’t melt). Bake for 18-20 minutes, then cool completely before cutting into bars. Wrapped well, the bars will last 2-3 weeks.
Tips & Tricks
- Dried Cherry and Pistachio
- Macadamia nut and white chocolate chips
- Cashews and dried currants
- Sliced Almonds and chopped dried apricots
- Chopped Pecan and chopped dates
- Walnuts and chopped dried figs