A long time ago, I bought these oatmeal packets.
These oatmeal packets make the worst instant oatmeal... no matter what you add (brown sugar, nuts, berries) they still taste bland. However, they make really good granola bars!
This recipe makes granola bars that are slightly chewy and super flavorful. You can customize your bars by adding whatever kind of nuts/fruit you want. You could (should) add chocolate to the situation in the form of chips or a drizzle. Here I went with dried sour cherries and chopped almonds. These are the first of many granola bars to come out of my kitchen for sure!
Sour Cherry & Almond Granola Bars (chewy)
makes a 9x13" pan
3 1/2 c old fashioned oats**
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 c granulated sugar
1 Tablespoon molasses
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 c + 2 Tablespoons corn syrup or honey
1/4 c + 2 Tablespoons coconut oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 c dried sour cherries, roughly chopped (or a dried fruit of your choosing)
1 c raw almonds, coarsely chopped (or any other nut you like)
optional add ins: chocolate chips, toasted coconut, flax seeds, rainbow sprinkles....
** I used rolled oatmeal packets but regular oats work as well!
- - -
pre-heat oven to 325F; line a 9x13" baking pan with parchment
1. In a saucepan over medium heat, melt together sugar, molasses, salt, oil, and corn syrup or honey; heat until sugar dissolves completely
2. Remove pan from heat and allow mixture to cool slightly before stirring in vanilla... it is important for this mixture to be cooled before adding to the dry ingredients, particularly if you have chocolate in the bars as the heat could cause the chips to melt!
3. In a food processor, pulse 3/4 c oats into a sandy powder; transfer to a large mixing bowl
4. To the oat powder add the cinnamon, almonds, remaining oats and sour cherries; stir to combine
5. Pour the (cooled) wet ingredients over the dry ingredients; use your hands to mix until evenly moistened
6. Transfer oat mixture to the prepared pan and, using damp hands, press into an even layer
7. Bake at 325F for 20-25 minutes
8. Cool completely before removing from pan and slicing!