Peanut Butter Jelly Granola Bars

These are traditional granola bars in the sense that they are made from oats and held together with brown rice syrup and flax.  Check out these if you want a Candida diet friendly version of sweet snack bars. I started making these for my husband when I smugly came to the conclusion that I could make something healthier, better tasting and cheaper than Cliff Bars, no offence Cliff.  This recipe is very easily customizable, so far I have made ginger almond, cranberry pecan and of course, peanut butter and jelly.  I adapted this recipe from Alton Brown’s basic granola bar recipe.

Crunchy, chewy granola bars, thanks Alton Brown!

Ingredients for Granola Bars

  • 2 cups Old Fashioned Rolled Oats
  • 1/2 cup raw or toasted sunflower seeds
  • 1 cup sliced peanuts, raw or toasted (you can use any kind of nuts, walnuts, pecans, pistachios, Brazil nuts, ect)
  • 1/2 cup ground flax
  • ½ cup of honey or brown rice syrup
  • 1/2 cup of nut butter, I used peanut butter this time but you can use almond, sunflower seed, ect.
  • ¼ cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus extra for pan
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 6 1/2 ounces chopped dried fruit, any combination of apricots, cherries, blueberries, cranberries, raisins or ginger, for these I used raisins.

The Procedure:

Butter a 9 by 9-inch glass baking dish and set aside. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Spread the oats, sunflower seeds and peanuts onto a half sheet pan. Place in the oven and toast for 15 minutes, stirring every 4-5 minutes. If you are using toasted sunflower seeds and nuts, just toast the oats!

In the meantime, combine the honey, brown sugar, butter, vanilla, nut butter and salt in a medium saucepan (large enough to accommodate all the ingredients from the recipe) and place over medium heat. Cook until the brown sugar has completely dissolved. Add the dried fruit last and then….

Gooey deliciousness

Once the oat mixture is done, remove it from the oven and reduce the heat to 300 degrees F. Immediately add the oat mixture to the liquid mixture and stir to combine.

peanuts, sunny seeds, flax and oats, next time I need to use a bigger sauce pan

Turn mixture out into the prepared baking dish and press down, evenly distributing the mixture in the dish and place in the oven to bake for 25 minutes.

It's sticky work so use a spatula to press the granola into the baking dish.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool for about ½ an hour or until they are cool but not cold. They will be too hard to cut if they are completely cold!  Cut into squares and store in an airtight container for up to a week.  Or, wrap the individual bars so you always have a healthy snack handy.

Another suggestion is to make a double batch, cut one into bars after it cools and spread the other one back out onto your half sheet pan, let it cool completely on the sheet pan and break up into bite sized granola for snacking or for breakfast with yogurt or your choice of milk.