Chewy Granola Bars with Almond & Coconut
Chewy, chocolatey, almondy, coconuty, peanut buttery, sweet perfection is what these granola bars should be called. However, some of those words are made up, and that is also a ridiculously long name for such a tiny bar.
But it’s so true! I made these granola bars yesterday for Nick and I to take to work for breakfasts, and they instantly became a fast favourite. I used a granola cereal for the bars this time because I had a small amount that I wanted to get rid of. The cereal is a bit processed and does have some sugar, but aside from that, there is no added sugar, and no processed ingredients. Also, next time, I would just use plain rolled oats, so start off by using those if you wish for completely non-processed granola bars! These bars are also no-bake, so they come together super quick and just need some time to set in the fridge.
I’m on a bit of a mission to try and find ways to cut sugar out of our diets. I’m not going to attempt to do it all at once, or with everything – because that will most certainly backfire on me. I think a more gradual change towards making an effort to cut out sugar will be great, and easier to stick with.
These granola bars were only the first step in my slash sugar plan. I was also inspired by A Beautiful Mess to create my own sugar free coffee creamer. I used Emma’s recipe but made my own date syrup! I’m going to be trying it out tomorrow morning in my coffee; probably with a granola bar on the side 😉
This recipe is also great because there are a number of different things that you could add in as well. Try adding a dried fruit like cranberries, or currants. Change up the type of nut that you use, or use a different nut butter. The flavour combinations are endless! Also, I went around grabbing random things from my pantry to put these bars together. So if you don’t have something like flax seed or chia seeds – skip it. Customize the bars to your unique tastes to ensure that you love every bite.
Chewy Almond Coconut Granola Bars
Time: 30 mins active + 30-45 mins cooling time.
Yield: 12 bars
1 rounded cup unsweetened coconut flakes
1 1/2 cups dates – chopped
1/3 cup honey
1/2 cup natural peanut butter (or other nut butter)
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/3 rounded cup toasted almonds (or other toasted nut)
1/2 cup granola (or rolled oats)
1/4 cup almond flour
1 tsp chia seeds
1 tbsp ground flax seeds
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 – 1/3 cup chopped dark chocolate (I used 70% cocoa)
- Line a 9×9 baking pan with plastic wrap so that it hangs over on all sides. Set aside.
- In a non stick frying pan over medium low heat, toast the coconut until most of it is golden brown. Transfer to a large bowl.
- Wipe the pan clean and empty in your chopped dates, honey, peanut butter and vanilla.
- Stir until the dates have started to break apart and the mixture has come together. Total time about 5-7 minutes.
- Add this mixture to the bowl with your coconut.
- To the coconut -date bowl, add the rest of the ingredients. Stir until the mixture is uniform. The chocolate will melt, which I liked. If you don’t want your chocolate to melt. Refrigerate the mixture for about 10 minutes before adding in the chocolate.
- Transfer the mixture to your lined baking pan and pat down so that it is level and reaches all corners.
- Allow to set in the refrigerator for 30-45 minutes before slicing into 12 bars and serving! Store the bars in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 weeks.
I was so so happy with how these came out, especially since I’ve never made granola bars before. The dates are just the perfect ingredient to hold the bars together, and have a delicious caramel-like flavour. The chia seeds and coconut give the bar an amazing texture, and the whole almonds give it a nice crunch.
I think these bars are a great first step towards reducing the amount of refined sugar that we eat. I’d love to hear any suggestions for more refined sugar free recipes to add to my collection. Also, feel free to let me know what you think of my almond coconut granola bars 🙂