I’ve changed the way I think about granola bars, recently. You see, I’d spent such a long time trying to convince myself that they’re a health food, it was frankly an *un*healthy waste of time. I’d considered replacing butter with coconut oil, tried cutting out the sugar, and spent ages trying to find the most wholesome, virtuous, organic peanut butter on the market. Not that there’s anything wrong with that! Healthy granola bars have their place, they do! But I’ve come to realise that a little bit of naughty mixed in with all the good stuff makes things just that bit more interesting.
Sometimes it’s nice to have a little bit of *proper* butter alongside your wholenut, sugar free peanut butter, and a little drizzle of chocolate to go with your wholesome oats, don’t you think? My granola bars are just the right balance between saintly and sinful. They’re for those of us who like our chips with a side of salad, our Pilates classes to be followed up by a slice of cake and a large latte, our apple slices dunked in Nutella. The coconut flakes add a subtle richness, macadamias make me happy because they’re tasty and also because they remind me of Ross from Friends, and cranberries taste like Christmas! PLUS there’s a bumper load of cinnamon and peanut butter in there for good measure, too!
Shall we get to the recipe already? Okay, here goes…
Recipe adapted and converted from this one here from King Arthur Flour.
160g quick-cooking rolled oats
100g granulated sugar
30g oats whizzed up in a food processor to make a flour
1/2 fine salt
1/2 ground cinnamon
150g mixed cranberries + macadamia nuts
70g coconut flakes
90g crunchy peanut butter
2tbsp corn syrup
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees, and set the butter to melt in a small saucepan. Use a little of the melted butter to grease a square baking tin, then line the tin with two strips of parchment paper in both directions. They do have a tendency to stick if you don’t line the tin fully, so be sure that you line the tin fully and then give the parchment paper a quick grease with melted butter too.
- Measure out the oats and sugar, and add to a large bowl. Put the remaining 30g of oats into a food processor, blend to a soft flour, and then add in.
- Then, simply, just measure out the remaining ingredients one by one, and put them into the bowl! Pour the melted butter in last of all, then use a wooden spoon to mash it all together. Keep mashing for longer than you think you’ll need to, to really make sure all the peanut butter is evenly mixed in.
- Empty the mixture into your lined and greased tin, then use the back of a spoon to pack it all in tight and smooth over the top. Put into a preheated oven, and cook for 25-30 minutes until the top is a golden brown colour. (Mine usually need precisely 27 minutes of cooking!)
- Allow them to cool completely in the tin before turning out, peeling off the parchment paper, and slicing into 12. And don’t forget to drizzle them with chocolate, if you fancy tipping the scales in the direction of ‘sinful’ ;)
Stack them, wrap them, and pack them in your lunch box. And don’t forget to tag me in a pic if you have a go at making them yourself! You know the drill, I’m ‘ciderwithrosieb’ on Twitter and ‘ciderwithrosieblog’ on Instagram!