We're in our last week of hockey practice here, & we've been making it through the season with these tasty, easy & quick-to-grab granola bars. We tweaked our original recipe, mostly adding almond butter & quinoa to it, & always changing up what seeds & nuts we add to the mix. It usually depends on what is available in the pantry. The chocolate adds a punch the kids can't resist. Enjoy!
After toasting your base of oats & quinoa, & whichever nuts & seeds you prefer, pour the melted sauce over them, in a large mixing bowl. Stir until everything is thoroughly coated. Then press into a parchment-lined pyrex. Chill for a few hours, then cut & enjoy! I'm usually out of parchment, so if you put it directly into the pyrex, they'll still work. It just makes it a little easier for cutting.
Homemade Granola Bars (dairy-free, nut-free)
2 cups gluten-free oats
1-cup quinoa (dry, uncooked)
1 cup unsweetened shredded or flaked coconut
1 cup nuts (almonds, cashews, or none if nut-free)
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup flax seeds
1/4 cup chia seeds
1/2 cup almond butter (we use Costco Kirkland Organic, it's peanut-free)
1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup organic palm shortening or coconut oil (we use Ciranda Palm Shortening)
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup dried fruit
1 cup chocolate chips, optional (we use Enjoy Life brand)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place oats, quinoa, seeds & nuts on it to toast. Toast for about 5 minutes, then stir, and toast for another 5 minutes.
2. On the stove, combine the honey, shortening, syrup, vanilla and salt. Cook until the shortening melts and almond butter dissolves, stirring occasionally.
3. In a large bowl, place the toasted oats, seeds & nuts, then pour the liquid mixture over them. Mix well, until the everything is evenly coated.
4. Let cool for a few minutes, then add dried fruit & chocolate chips (these will melt, so either let it sit long enough, or be okay with some melted chocolate ;) ).
5. When thoroughly mixed, press into a 9x13 pyrex, lined with parchment paper. You want to press really hard for a minute or two, so they really stick together.
6. Chill in the fridge for a couple hours, then cut into bars.
*replace any seeds with your seeds of choice, same for fruit & nuts
**the almond butter can be replaced with another nut-butter or seed-butter, depending on your allergies or likes/dislikes
***you can swap the palm shortening for coconut oil; we use Ciranda brand palm shortening because it's grown according to Fair Trade & sustainable conditions