I’m making an effort to eat less processed food, but every once in a while I find myself out and about and am starving. And I’m not a pleasant hungry person — I go into total meltdown. Dark Vader’s got nuthin’ on a hangry Morgan. In order to prevent my inevitable turn to the dark side, I’ve been carrying around some protein bars from the grocery store, but they tend to violate the “real word” rule. (yes, I know that chemical names are real words, but you get the point.) So I decided to make some granola bars for myself that I could have readily available for grabbing on my way out the door, for those mornings when making breakfast just seems like too much of a bother, or to throw in my pack for a mid-hike pick-me-up.
So when making granola bars, I, of course, turned to that most beloved of fruits: the peach. The bits of dried peaches are mixed in with almonds, hazelnuts, oat bran, spices, honey and chia seeds to create a sweet, soft, chewy, bar. It’s so damn wholesome that I might as well be running through waves of amber grain. These wholesome bars of awesomeness can be stored at room temp or in the refrigerator, but they hold together a little better when they’re cold, so I recommend the fridge. If you are taking the granola bars on the road, throw them in a baggie or wrap them in parchment paper.
- 2¼ C Rolled Oats
- ¼ C Oat Bran
- ½ C Almonds, roughly chopped
- ½ C Hazelnuts, roughly chopped
- 2 Tbsp Chia Seeds
- ½ tsp Salt
- ½ tsp ground Ginger
- ¼ tsp ground Cinnamon
- 3 Dried Peaches, chopped (6 peach halves)
- ⅓ C Honey
- ¼ C Coconut Oil
- 2 Tbsp Light Brown Sugar
- 2 oz Dark Chocolate, chopped
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Combine the oats, oat bran, almonds and hazelnuts and spread them out over a baking sheet. Pop the sheet in the oven and toast for about 10 minutes, stirring the oats and nuts halfway through.
- Take after toasting, let the oats and nuts cool, then add them to a bowl and toss them with the chia seeds, salt, ginger, cinnamon and peaches.
- Combine the honey, coconut oil and brown sugar in a small pot and bring to a boil, stirring all the while. Remove the honey mixture from the heat and let cool slightly.
- Pour the honey mixture into the dry ingredients and stir until the honey has been evenly distributed.
- Mix in the chocolate.
- Line an 8×8″ baking pan with foil and lightly coat with nonstick spray. Press the granola mixture into the pan, pressing down very firmly. The more firmly you press, the better the bars hold together.
- Cover the pan and chill in the refrigerator for at least two hours.
- Once fully chilled, turn the granola bars out onto a cutting board and cut into 12 bars. They can be kept at room temperature or in the refrigerator, but they hold together better in the refrigerator.
When pressing the granola into the pan, I find it useful to set another pan on top of the granola and press on that. This helps distribute the pressure out over the granola and leaves you with a nice, flat surface.
If you like this recipe, you may be interested in:
“Simple Soft and Chewy Granola Bars” from Inspired Taste, which were the inspiration for these Chewy Peach Granola Bars.
“Chewy Chocolate Chip Granola Bars” from Once Upon a Chef.
“Thick, Chewy Granola Bars” from Smitten Kitchen.
“Cranberry Chocolate Chip Granola Bars” from Baked by Rachel.