Do you have a favorite granola bar recipe? To date, mine is still this one. I’ve tried lots of others, but these are the crunchiest (though still slightly chewy on the edges), always hold together, and can easily be made vegan.
The recipe is adapted from King Arthur’s “Vermont Granola Bars”, but over the years I’ve taken a lot of liberties with it, including halving the recipe to fit a 9×13 inch pan, getting rid of all the fruit, adding Rice Krispies and various flavored chips, and re-tooling the heat settings. I think I’ve finally got it down!
I sent these to school with Fuzz as a treat for the class, and since the kids liked them so much, I decided to go ahead and share the recipe.
- 1/2 cup roughly chopped pecans or walnuts
- 1/2 cup coconut, sweetened flaked or unsweetened
- 2 cups rolled oats
- 1/2 cup sunflower seed kernels
- 1/2 cup Rice Krispies
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons corn syrup
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons (3 ounces) VERY firmly packed light or dark brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/3 to 1/2 cup mixed semi-sweet and butterscotch chips
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Place the pecans on a large baking sheet and roast the pecans for about 2 minutes. Add the coconut to the baking sheet and roast along with the pecans for another 4 minutes or until coconut starts to brown and pecans become aromatic. Transfer to a mixing bowl.
- Add the oats and sunflower seeds to baking sheet and toast for about 8 minutes, stirring every 4 minutes, or just until oats start to brown. Add the toasted oats and seeds to the bowl with the nuts and coconut. Add the Rice Krispies.
- Raise the oven temperature to 450 degrees F and line a 9x13 inch METAL pan with nonstick foil.
- Stir the salt, butter, corn syrup, maple syrup and brown sugar together in a saucepan. Turn heat to medium and bring to a boil. Place a candy thermometer in the saucepan and allow mixture to boil over medium heat, without stirring, until mixture reaches 248 degrees F or “firm ball stage” on a deep fry or candy thermometer. Remove from heat and quickly pour syrup over dry ingredients. Add the vanilla, and stir until dry ingredients are moistened. Pour into the pan. With a sheet of nonstick foil, press down flat. Sprinkle the chips across the top.
- Put the pan in the oven and bake for 5 to 6 minutes at 450 degree F. Remove from oven. They will be hot, bubbly and mushy. Let cool for 8 to 10 minutes. Score the bars in half lengthwise, then cut crosswise to make 14 to 16 bars, depending on how skinny you want them. Do not separate (they’ll be too mushy, anyway). Let cool for another hour or until bars are room temperature. Pull them apart and wrap individually.