In addition to cleaning out the refrigerator before our trip to Boston, I set about making some healthy snacks to munch on during the 8-hour trip north. Obvious choices included vegetables and fruits (and the leftover quiche), but I wanted something a bit more interesting and, let’s be honest, I needed something sweet.
I’m trying this new thing where I actually use the foodstuffs in my pantry and freezer, as opposed to just stock-piling them like I’m preparing for an apocalypse. My eyes flitted from the almonds to the raisins, oats, and (oh, yes!) chocolate chips when I realized I had a good idea going.
I sealed the deal when I spotted some leftover shredded coconut from I don’t know when and decided to make an ‘everything and the kitchen sink’ version of granola bars. To make it even easier (because granola bars are so difficult), I made them no bake so all I had to do was pop them in the fridge after mixing everything together.
The beauty of homemade granola bars is that you can customize them exactly how you like them. It’s so much better than standing at the grocery store and thinking to yourself, “those would be so good if only they didn’t have (blank)” or “I would buy those in a heartbeat if they only included (blank)”. In the land of individuality and customizing things for each consumer (because we’re all special little snowflakes), the granola bar is one of the best ways to express your epicurean individuality.
I’ve posted the recipe for this particular granola bar because I think it is super duper scrumptious, but I think that as long as you’ve got the oats as a foundation and the honey as a sweetener and adhesive, you can let your imagination run totally wild and throw in whatever strikes your fancy (read: whatever you have in your cupboard and need to use before it goes bad).
No Bake Granola BarsMakes 10 granola bars
- 2 cups old-fashioned/rolled oats
- 2 oz. almonds, chopped (about 25 almonds)
- 1/2 cup chocolate chips
- 1/2 cup raisins
- 1/4 cup shredded coconut
- 2 Tablespooons chia seeds ( these also act as a good adhesive!)
- 1/4 cup coconut oil (in liquid form – just stick it in the microwave for 10 seconds if it’s solid)
- 1/4-1/3 cup honey (depending on how sweet you’d like them – if you’re adding chocolate chips, I’d lean towards the 1/4 cup end)
- 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter (heated so you can drizzle it in)
- Mix oats, chopped almonds, raisins, coconut, and chia seeds in a large bowl until well combined. Note: If you want the chocolate chips to be solid, add them in last, after the coconut oil and peanut butter have cooled so they don’t melt. If you mix them while the liquids are hot, the chocolate chips will melt so the whole bar will have a hint of chocolate.
- Add coconut oil, honey, and peanut butter until the mixture holds together (if you can form it into a ball and it stays, the mixture is ready). If you are waiting to add the chocolate chips, do so now when the mixture is cool.
- In an 8×8″ square pan lined with wax paper, press the mixture into the pan so it covers the bottom and the top is level.
- Chill in the refrigerator for one hour (the coconut oil will solidify and the peanut butter and honey will thicken up so they will hold together quite nicely).
- When ready to serve, cut into 10 servings and dig in. It is best to keep these in the refrigerator until you’re ready to eat them, but they warm up to room temperature quickly.