Thursday, February 6, 2014

Granola Bars with Dried Figs, Cherries and Coconut



Inspired by Minimalist Baker's post on Granola Bars, I realized I had saved another recipe for granola bars from In Praise of Leftovers on my computer from 2010 that was strikingly similar. This one was based on a recipe from Eating Well but I had never gotten around to making them until I saw MB's lovely photos which finally inspired me to try these wonderful no-bake granola bars.


The beauty of these granola or 'power' bars is that they are so easy to make and are endlessly adaptable.  I had everything I needed on hand last weekend when I made these - old-fashioned oats, peanut butter, honey and agave nectar, dried figs, dried cherries, sliced almonds, sesame seeds and unsweetened coconut. 


I doubled the recipe and am glad I did!  They are the most delicious granola bar I've ever had - just right for a quick on-the-run breakfast or snack.  I will definitely be making these again.

Fig, Cherry and Coconut Granola Bars

Adapted from In Praise of Leftovers and Eating Well
I advise doubling this recipe and using a non-stick 9x13" baking pan!

1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
1/4 cup sliced almonds
1/4 cup sesame seeds or other seeds of choice such as flax or sunflower
1 cup unsweetened whole-grain puffed cereal (like Kashi) - I used an almond granola cereal
1/2 cup dried cherries, chopped
1/2 cup dried figs, chopped
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut
1/4 cup creamy peanut butter such as Skippy Natural
1/4 cup turbinado or brown sugar - I used light brown sugar
1/4 cup honey - I used half honey and half agave nectar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/8 teaspoon salt

Cut to fit and place a piece of parchment on the bottom of an 8" metal baking pan (or 9x13 pan if doubling recipe), leaving 2 ends a little longer for ease of lifting out of pan

Preheat oven to 350.

Spread oats, almonds, sesame seeds and coconut on a large, rimmed baking sheet and toast until everything is lightly browned and fragrant, 8-10 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl. Add cereal, and dried fruits and toss to combine.
Combine peanut butter, brown sugar, honey and/or nectar, vanilla, and salt in small saucepan. Heat over medium-low, stirring frequently, until the mixture bubbles slightly, 2-5 minutes.

Immediately pour the peanut butter mixture over the dry ingredients and mix with a spoon until no dry spots remain. Transfer to the prepared pan. Lightly oil your hands and press the mixture down firmly to make an even layer.  I also used the flat side of a large spatula to even press the mixture into the pan.

Refrigerate until firm, about 30-45 minutes. Remove slab of bars and cut into even strips and then bars.  Mine were about 1-1/2" x 2-1/2" and yielded about 32 bars with the doubled recipe.

15 comments:

  1. I love granola bars and rarely make them. These sound wonderful with ingredients that I like and are healthy. Homemade granola bars are perfect when you need a quick snack on the go that's filled with protein and nutritious. Nice recipe.

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  2. wow I love these granola bars, Susan. They look fabulous and luckily, I have ALL the ingredients in my pantry. Thanks for sharing!
    Happy Friday!
    Angie

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  3. ...MMM those look really delicious. These would be great to eat anytime but especially when I am hiking! :-) I will have to try your recipe!

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  4. Your photos are OUTSTANDING nana..
    These look terrific!MMM peanut butter:)

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  5. Beautiful photos Susan and the granolas look so crunchy and delicious with the coconut and the sesame seeds!

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  6. These look great, Susan. I've not had good luck with granola bars, but the breakfast cookies I made a while back were a big success, so I might have good luck with this recipe. Love dried cherries, so they're probably fattening! ;)

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  7. Whatever inspired you to get these posted, I am grateful to. They have everything we like and then some. I may have to wait until the great thaw to pick up a few ingredients that aren't on hand.

    Best,
    Bonnie

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  8. Dear friends, thank you and I don't have any idea what is going on with my blog right now but evidently I am under some kind hack attack. I apologist and hope I can figure out what is going on,

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  9. Can you believe that I never made granola bars? Yours look delicious with the dry figs and cherry, I love them fruity. YUM!
    Hope you are having a great week Susan :D

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    Replies
    1. Juliana, your comment was my first since my blog was locked. I am so thrilled to see it and that my blog is back online again!

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  10. a delicious granola bars, perfect for breakfast, have a good week Susan, a hug...

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  11. Hi Susan,
    I'm glad that your blog is back to normal again!
    I love granola bars, my family not so, so I would enjoy it all on my own. These looks wonderful!

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  12. These look wonderful and so healthy! We haven't made granola bars yet and would love to try this recipe! Thanks for sharing !

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