Cranberry Almond Granola Bars
Homemade granola bars are my new obsession! Making granola bars could not be simpler and they are far superior to store bought ones. I am not sure what got me to first try making granola bars, but now I am making them every week. They are so easy to make and are perfect for school lunches.
I don’t bake these granola bars. Instead, I just toast the oats (and nuts) in the oven for a bit first. Then I make the caramel style sauce in a saucepan which I mix with the oats and any other ingredients like chocolate chips, coconut, raisins or anything else. I press this mixture in a 13×9 pan and place in the fridge until they harden and can be cut. That’s it!
This particular granola bar recipe is quite likely my favourite of all the types I have made so far. I am a huge dried cranberry fan and they go really well with almonds. On top of that, adding some chocolate chips is always a bonus! These granola bars are sweet, nutty, hearty and delicious!
I pretty much always have the base ingredients in the pantry. Oats, butter, brown sugar and corn syrup are my base ingredients and then I add all sorts of different other ingredients which add the flavour and variety to the bars. Here are a few granola bar combinations I have made.
- dried cranberries, sliced almonds and chocolate chips are in these granola bars and I love these!
- chopped pretzels, peanut butter and chocolate chips make a great sweet and salty bar.
- pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, flax seeds and raisins make a super healthy trail mix bar.
Spread the oats and sliced almonds on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake in a 350F oven for 12 minutes. This toasts the oats and almonds which gives them an enhanced flavour in the granola bars.
Melt the butter in a saucepan. Stir in the brown sugar and corn syrup until the brown sugar has dissolved. I like to bring it to a light boil and then reduce the heat to low. Let it simmer, stirring constantly, for about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla.
Dump the oat mixture into a large bowl and pour the butter and sugar mixture on top. Toss so that the oats are evenly coated. Let cool slightly for a few minutes.
Dump in the dried cranberries and chocolate chips. Stir it gently so that it is all evenly mixed.
Line a 13×9 pan in parchment paper and dump the oat mixture in the pan. Use another sheet of parchment paper to press the oat mixture down. I press down quite firmly as this helps keep the oats together once they are cut into bars.
Place in the fridge for at least 90 minutes. This allows the oats to bond together and hold in bar form once cut.
Lift out the slab of granola and place on a large cutting board.
Cut into 20 granola bars. These can be stored in an airtight container for a couple weeks.
These granola bars are addictive and a great snack food that I love to have around the house.
Cranberry Almond Chocolate Chip Granola Bars
- 4 1/4 cups rolled oats
- 1 cup sliced almonds
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup corn syrup
- 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
- 1 cup dried cranberries roughly chopped
- 1/2 cup chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and evenly spread the rolled oats and sliced almonds across the sheet. Bake in the oven for 12 minutes to toast the oats and almonds. Remove from the oven and cool to room temperature.
- Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the brown sugar and corn syrup until the brown sugar is dissolved. Bring to a light boil and lower heat to a simmer. Let the mixture simmer for about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla.
- Dump the toasted oats and almonds in a large bowl. Stir in the butter and brown sugar until the oats are evenly coated. Let cool slightly, for a couple minutes. Gently stir in the dried cranberries and chocolate chips until well mixed.
- Line a 13x9 pan with parchment paper. Evenly spread the oat mixture across the bottom of the pan. Use another sheet of parchment paper to press the oat mixture down.
- Place in the fridge for 90 minutes.
- Remove from the fridge and cut into bars.