Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Whats Cookin' Wednesdays: Chocolate Chip Granola Bars

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Looking for a back to school snack for the kiddos?? Or if you're a teacher, maybe for yourself?
These homemade granola bars are perfect! We absolutely love these at home. And the great thing is they are so versatile. If you don't like chocolate (Then you're not human) or can't eat it (I'll eat it all for you) you can really add anything you want to them; nuts, dried fruit, sunflower seeds, marshmallows....You get the idea!




Ingredients:

2 cups old fashioned oats
1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 cup chocolate chips
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup honey or agave nectar

For all the visual people.

Instructions:
Preheat oven 325 F. Combine first 6 ingredients (dry) in a large bowl.



In a separate bowl, mix together remaining ingredients (wet). Then pour wet mixture over the dry ingredients and stir to combine.
The picture above is a wonderful investment I made to use for all my baking needs. These Silpat mats are genius!! Every baker needs to have one. For more information on them check out THIS WEBSITE.  If you don't have one, it's okay. Just line a 13x9x1 in rectangle baking sheet with parchment paper. DO NOT use wax paper. 
Pour mixture into lined pan and pat down with a spoon forming a rectangle. I have a larger pan, so I just did what I could in shaping the one side that didn't meet the edge. Still turned out great!

Bake for 30-40 min. Oven times will vary so be sure to check on your granola around 20 min. It should have a nice golden brown color to it. Allow to cool for 15 min then cut into bars. 

Any left over bars can be either individually wrapped or put into ziplock bags and placed in the fridge. They will keep fresh that way for several weeks (they will be eaten by then). If your granola comes out too hard and just seems to crumble into pieces, don't throw it away!! I actually have made a crumbly batch into a cereal. Kinda tastes like honey bunches of oats!

If you substituted other ingredients for the chocolate chips, I'd love to hear about it!! Send me some comments to share :)

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