How to Make Granola Bars

My family loves granola bars.  They are handy to grab,  whether adding one to your lunch bag, as a quick breakfast or as a midnight snack.  I do worry though, about what is actually in store bought bars.  I checked out a few boxes from our cupboard and found that some bars contained as many as thirty-seven ingredients!  Included in some, but not all bars, were such unpronounceables as:

  • Sodium Carboxymethycellulose
  • Tocopherols
  • Acetylated Tartaric Acid Esters of Mono-and Diglycerides
  • Annatto Colour

I certainly don’t want my family to be eating these weird ingredients and I don’t want to be eating them either.

So, because of this, I set out on a mission to find out how to make granola bars.  I wanted a healthier alternative that can be customizable to my family’s needs and wants.  I also wanted the option of switching up ingredients a bit so we don’t tire of the same product day after day.  And, the bar had to be easy to make.

This is what I have come up with:

How to Make Granola Bars

The ingredients; gathered together and ready for mixing.

How to Make Granola Bars

Be sure to keep gently mixing until all ingredients are nicely combined.

How to Make Granola Bars

Out of the oven and cooling on a rack.

How to Make Granola Bars

The deliciously addictive,  finished product!

5.0 from 2 reviews
Granola Bars
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 20-40
  • 2 cups regular oats
  • ¾ cup nuts and/or seeds {I used of a mix of hemp hearts, natural pumpkin seeds (shelled) and flax seeds to total ¾ cup}
  • You could also use: coconut; sunflower seeds (shelled); chopped pistachios, pine nuts, almonds, pecans, walnuts, peanuts, cashews}
  • 11/4 cups dried fruit (I used a combination of dried cranberries, blueberries and pomegranate to total 11/4 cups}
  • You could also use coarsely chopped; dried cherries, apple, apricot, mango, fig, papaya, plum, pear, tomato or raisins.
  • ½ cup dark chocolate chips (You could substitute with semi-sweet, milk or white chocolate)
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • ⅓ cup honey or maple syrup {I used maple syrup but you could easily use honey or a combination of both)
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla
  • 3 Tbsp.peanut butter (optional - If not using peanut butter add an additional 1½ Tbsp. vegetable oil.)
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Line a 9" x 13" pan with parchment and lightly spray with cooking spray.
  3. Measure oil, honey or maple syrup, salt, brown sugar and peanut butter into a small saucepan.
  4. Heat gently over low heat, stirring until mixture is smooth and sugar is dissolved. Add vanilla.
  5. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, mix together the oatmeal, fruit, nuts and seeds.
  6. Add the cooked liquid mixture to the oatmeal mixture and stir until the dry ingredients are well coated. It will take a few minutes for it to all come together. The mixture should be slightly sticky and begin to clump together. {Add more honey/maple syrup if necessary.)
  7. Stir in the chocolate chips.
  8. Using an offset spatula or the back of a large spoon, press the mixture firmly into the prepared pan.
  9. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the edges are ever so lightly browned. Cool completely and then chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 to 3 hours or overnight before cutting into 20 bars or 40 squares.
  10. Store in an airtight container in the the refrigerator,

When chilled, this is a firm but not hard bar.  If packaged up for a lunchbox, when warm, the bar will be softer but it will still taste yummy! I really like the ability to control the ingredients and the option to customize them.   They weren’t too sweet and the taste of the dark chocolate really comes through. These were so delicious, they are almost addictive…lol.

Do you make your own granola bars?

Have you ever had homemade granola bars?  Did you like them?



  1. They sure look and sound good. All I know about ingredients using ‘cellulose’ is that it’s wood fibre.
    JoJo recently posted…Taking Your Life In Your Hands…aka, The Bourne RotaryMy Profile

  2. I have never done this before, but you have inspired me to give it a try!. The fact that the ingredients can be changed to suit is a real bonus, and you still have a healthy and tasty snack. Thanks for posting.

  3. I have been making my own granola for about a year now and love it. It’s such a hit my moms asks me to make it before she visits:)
    Lisa recently posted…Marion & Tabitha Attend A Party in NYCMy Profile


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