Chunky Granola Bars

 
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This recipe is one that my hubby and I have developed over the past several years from an original recipe that we found online (can’t remember where, sorry).

Our kiddos absolutely love it! They eat it at least every other day, if not daily. I especially love to throw some in my diaper bag for my boys to eat on days that we are out running errands. Being the we are currently a household with one vehicle it can mean we are out of the house most of the day. This makes for a great healthy option to keep the hanger at bay for both myself and the kids - and helps me not spend lots of money on eating out, which is good for our budget!

Here are a few tips before you get started:

  1. Place the can of sweetened condensed milk into a bowl filled with warm to hot water. This softens the contents and makes it easier to pour into your mixing bowl.

  2. Spray the baking tray with non-stick spray and then line it with parchment paper. This helps the granola bars not stick to the tray.

  3. Ensure you press the granola mixture firmly into the pan as this will give you a better structure to the bars once they are cooked so that they won’t fall apart.

WHAT YOU’LL NEED…

Equipment:

  • Large 9x13 baking sheet, at least 1/2 inch deep

  • Spatlula

  • Large mixing bowl

  • Measuring cups

  • Parchment Paper

  • Cooking Spray

  • Small measuring jug for melted butter

  • Medium bowl filled with warm/hot water to soften the condensed milk in

Ingredients:

  • 3 C Old Fashioned Rolled Oats

  • 1 C Shredded Coconut

  • 1 C Mixed Nuts, Roasted Unsalted

  • 1/2 C Raisins

  • 1/2 C Dried Cranberries

  • 1/4 C Roasted Sunflower Seeds

  • 1/4 C Pumpkin Seeds (Pepitas)

  • 2-3 TBSP Unsalted Butter, Melted

  • 1 (140z) can Sweetened Condensed Milk

HOW TO MAKE THEM…

  1. Preheat oven to 350* F.

  2. Prepare the baking pan with kitchen spray and parchment paper, set aside.

  3. Into a large mixing bowl measure out oats, coconut, nuts, raisins, diced cranberries. sunflower and pumpkin seeds. Mix until combined.

  4. Add in melted butter and stir until all ingredients are covered.

  5. Pour over the sweetened condensed milk and still until completely combined. Pour onto prepared baking tray, using your spatula press mixed down firmly into all corners. Pressing down firmly ensures the bars will stick together well.

  6. Bake in preheated oven for approximately 25 minutes, until golden brown. Cool for 5 minutes, then cut into desired size and leave to cool completely before removing and placing into an airtight container. Eat within a week.

I have made variations of this recipe, and you can be free to make adjustments and changes where you like to make these to your desired taste. Some of those adjustments that I’ve made are as follows.

Variation 1:

  • 3 C Quick Oats, these are smaller and can be easier for smaller kids to eat.

  • 1 C Coconut

  • 1/4 C Peanut Butter Powder

  • 1 C Raisins

  • 2-3 TBSP Unsalted Butter, Melted

  • 1 (14oz) Can Sweetened Condensed Milk

I took out a lot of the other ingredients and made it simpler. The method is the same as above with mixing all the dry ingredients together and then adding in the wet before baking.

Variation 2:

Dairy free! Almost the same as the original recipe except I changed out the unsalted butter for vegan butter and used sweetened condensed coconut milk, I found this gem in the natural food isle at my local grocery store. Made and baked using the same method as above.

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So as you can see its easy to switch and change this recipe up, add or remove anything!

I will say if you are removing ingredients it will make the granola mix wetter, which can cause the bars to not stick together as well. I would try counteracting this wby adding a few extras oats.

Enjoy experimenting & share with me here, or on social media what you came up with!

Happy Baking!
Erika

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Erika Perona