Chewy Granola Bars

Homemade Granola BarsLove granola bars, but wish they didn't have so much sugar? Make your own. A perfect back-to-school treat!

Chewy Granola Bars Recipe
2 cups quick-cooking oats (or 2 cups rolled oats, processed briefly in a food processor)
1 cup crisp brown rice cereal 
1 cup sliced almonds or coarsely chopped pecans
1 cup raisins, dried cranberries, chopped dried apricots, or unsweetened coconut
1/4 cup wheat germ or ground flaxmeal (optional)
1/2 cup coconut oil or butter
3/4 cup brown rice syrup
1/4 cup golden syrup or honey (optional)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1. Line a 9 by 13 pan with parchment paper (or oil the bottom and sides). 

2. In a large bowl, combine the first five ingredients (oats through wheat germ) and stir.

3. In a small saucepan, stir together the oil, syrup, and honey. Heat the mixture on high until it begins to bubble. Immediately turn it down to low or medium low and stir (with a wooden spoon or heatproof spatula) for four minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the salt and vanilla extract. Pour over the oats mixture and stir until dry ingredients are evenly coated.

4. Press mixture into prepared pan and pat down with a rubber spatula or a piece of oiled wax paper. Let the bars cool for at least an hour before cutting.

5. Store bars in an airtight container.

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