Saturday, December 8, 2012

Granola Bars (No-Bake):

We really like granola bars, but if you are on a gluten-free diet, they are hard to find and if you do find them, they are hard as rocks or disgusting. We have found one brand at Sam's that we like and can have, but we've been eating them for like 8 years now, so we're kind of sick of them!!! When we went to visit family over Thanksgiving, my cousin made some AMAZING granola bars! We ate them like crazy and she has graciously shared her recipe! I hope you will take 10 minutes and give them a try, because I know you'll love them! Thanks, again, for the recipe, Amber!!!

(Don't go by the picture....they taste FAR better than they look here!
Who knew it was so hard to take pictures of granola bars?)

2 &1/2 cups puffed Rice cereal
1 & 3/4 cups oats, quick or regular
1/4 cup ground flax seeds or additional oats
1/2 cup Add ins - this can be anything from dried fruit, coconut, nuts, sunflower seeds...whatever you like
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup brown sugar
2/3 cup peanut butter
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup chocolate chips or more add-ins

In a large bowl, combine first 4 ingredients. Combine and set aside.
In a small saucepan, heat honey and brown sugar over medium-high heat until the mixture comes to a boil, stirring constantly. Boil for 30-60 seconds. Remove from the heat and add peanut butter and vanilla. Mix until smooth. Pour mixture over dry ingredients and mix until really well combined. Let stand 5-10 minutes and then stir in the chocolate chips. Press evenly into a greased 9x13-inch baking dish. Let stand until cool. Cut into 24 bars. How easy was that?!!!!

-My cousin wrapped each granola bar in wax paper and just placed them all in a big bowl. We put the individual bars in snack-size zip-lock baggies.
-When I made these, I didn't have any ground flax seed, so I just added extra oats, but my cousin used flax seeds and it didn't change the taste, just added another "healthy" component!!
-So far we have tried dried cranberries, raisins, and dried blueberries, all of which were delicious!
-You could use Rice Crispies in place of the puffed rice, but I think it's better with the puffed rice and plus it's healthier.
-I've not yet tried it, but they say these freeze really well. If there is ever a time when they last long enough for me to put some in the freezer to try, I will let you know how it works!

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