Granola bars from supermarket shelves are often expensive, wrapped in a ton of plastic, and made with palm oil. If you want to eat sustainable granola bars, then it’s best to make them yourself. Utopia shows you how!
Granola bars are a healthy snack, since they’re packed full of healthy grains, nuts, and dried fruits. Those ingredients fill you up and deliver an energy punch. Our recipe is quick and easy.
DIY Granola Bars: the Basic Recipe
We always recommend buying organic ingredients whenever possible. For 12 granola bars, you’ll need:
- 1/3 c shelled nuts or seeds (i.e., almonds, hazelnuts, sunflower seeds)
- 2/3 c dried fruit (i.e., raisins, craisins, prunes)
- 1 apple
- 1/3 c flour
- 1/3 c oats
- 2 T honey or agave syrup
Finely grate the apple and chop the nuts, seeds, and dried fruits into small pieces. Mix these together with the remaining ingredients. Cover a baking sheet with parchment and spread the mixture evenly to half-inch thickness across the sheet. Bake at 350 degrees (convection) for around 30 minutes. Cut into bars while still warm, then allow to cool completely. Store in a cool, dry place for 1-2 weeks.
Experiment with Your Own Granola Bar Variations
This recipe allows for a lot of experimentation. You can use whichever nuts, seeds, or dried fruits you want or simply have on hand. You can replace oats with many other types of grains, brans, or even cereals. If it’s a special kind of crunch you’re after, try adding puffed amaranth or quinoa.
Vegans can use agave, maple, or other sweetener syrups in lieu of honey. You can also substitute regional or homemade sweeteners like dandelion honey, pear syrup, apple sugar, molasses, sugar beet syrup, or rice syrup. There are no limits to what you can imagine, so give it a try and let us know in the comments how your experiments turned out!
Benefits of Homemade Granola Bars
The small amount of work involved is easily rewarded by the cost savings over store-bought bars. You don’t even need a calculator to figure that out!
Further, you managed to save a ton of plastic garbage from landing in the dump or our oceans.
This recipe is healthier than most industrially-produced granola bars, which rely on adding refined sugars and palm oil. The latter is harvested by ruthless destruction of rainforests in Southeast Asia, so avoid this ingredient whenever possible.
In conclusion, making your own granola bars instead of purchasing them helps the environment and does your body a favor as well.