Around here we (ah hem, apparently) like our granola bars chewy. I say ah hem...and apparently, because how we like 'em can change as quickly as the days of the week. Whatever. Right now we like 'em chewy and so that's what we did. And that's what we ate. And that was a success. Oh, and we like 'em healthy. So we did that too.
Proof that you can teach an old dog new tricks is in the recipe below.
I know this because they ate 'em up. All of them. Actually, all of us. All five (!!!) of us. We all ate 'em, liked 'em, and I think I'll make more tomorrow.
Before I share this recipe - which, may I add is nut free (score for those whose children attend nut free schools and for those of us with wee ones who are getting used to finger food and whom we don't want to choke on chunks of nuts) - I have to say I am appalled at how many unhealthy granola bar recipes come up when I google "healthy chewy granola bar recipe".
Does that make sense? It seemed to me that over 3/4 of these so called "healthy" recipes included chocolate chips, corn syrup (they know that just because it has the word corn that doesn't make it healthy right?), brown sugar, etc. Ridiculous, people. Perhaps the word "chewy" somehow outweighed it's precursor?! One of life's mysteries, I guess.
This recipe for actually (!) healthy (!!) and chewy granola bars was originally found here. I'm going to re-write it for your viewing pleasure and edit the parts we, well, edited while throwing things in the mixing bowl. It was a good recipe though. I'm just too controlling not to change some part of it. (Insert smile, here.)
Actually Healthy and Chewy Granola Bars
2 cups old fashioned rolled oats
1 cup spelt flour
1 cup left over cereal bits (we used kashi)
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp cinnamon
2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 cup flax meal
1/4 cup (slightly less) oil (we used olive but I think I'll use coconut tomorrow)
1/3 cup honey
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp blackstrap molasses (this stuff rocks in the Iron department!)
1 cup sugar free applesauce (...we added a bit more for a little extra...well...chewiness!)
Preheat over to 350. Toast oats for 5 minute in a dry skillet. In a large bowl, combine...everything. I like to do it all at once because it saves extra dishes and I'm kind of kamikaze in the kitchen like that. Just ask my mother. If you need more moisture just add more of the applesauce. Either line a 9x13" pan with parchment paper or tin foil, or give it a little spray with EVOO. Bake for about 25-30 minutes until slightly browned.
Oh, we added raisins to ours. And coconut. Unsweetened of course. Why, you ask? Why not?! I think sesame seeds would give an awesome crunch...and I'd add them tomorrow but it's supposed to be something like -25 C outside and I just don't want to get out of the car to whip into the grocery store that badly. You know?!