Simple, Soft and Chewy Granola Bars Recipe

A simple, soft and chewy granola bars recipe that’s delicious as-is or can be adapted based on your favorite dried fruits, nuts or chocolate. Jump to the Granola Bar Recipe or read on to see how we make them.

  

We have a history with granola bars. A while back, we shared a cooking failure. The subject was granola bars. They tasted great, but fell apart. So, we sort of gave up and moved on with the thought that one day, we would be ready to give them another shot. After two years, we’ve picked up where we left off and have now figured out how to make these simple, soft and chewy granola bars. We’re in love. They taste great, are incredibly easy to make and they absolutely do not fall apart (see our tips below).

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This Recipe is Flexible

We’ve made these many times now and every time, they’ve been just a little bit different.

Chewy Granola Bars Recipe

Here, you see whole almonds, dried cranberries and mini chocolate chips. We’ve also used dried cherries, apricots and unsweetened coconut. We’re even thinking about adding pistachios next time. The possibilities are endless — all you need to know is the base. Oats, butter, honey and brown sugar. After that, add what you like.

Chewy Granola Bar Recipe

Healthy Banana Blueberry Muffins RecipeYOU MAY ALSO LIKE:How to make healthy banana blueberry muffins that actually taste good! We add whole grains, ripe bananas and reduce the sugar. Most importantly though, they taste great! Jump to our Healthy Banana Blueberry Muffins Recipe.

Tips for Making the Bars

  • After a few tries, we’ve found that it’s really important to press the granola mixture into the pan. We’ve actually spent about a minute pressing before — the harder and longer you press, the less chance you’ll end up with granola instead of granola bars.
  • The honey and brown sugar really helps with keeping the bars together. Chocolate chips added to the mixture help, too. We add some to the granola mixture while it is still warm. You might notice some of the chocolate melts — this is totally okay, it acts as extra glue, holding the bars together. After that, we add more chocolate chips to the top — these don’t melt.
  • Finally, we like to refrigerate the granola mixture for about 2 hours. This hardens everything and makes it easy to cut the granola mixture into bars. Right out of the refrigerator the bars will be hard since they are cold. Leave them out for an hour and they will warm to room temperature and become a little softer and chewy.
  • The bars keep at room temperature for about 1 week (if they last that long). Just make sure they are tightly covered or sealed in a container.

YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: We’ve also shared a Homemade Vanilla, Almond and Honey Granola Recipe, which we bet you’ll like, too — it’s so easy

Recipe updated, originally posted March 2013. Since posting this in 2013, we have tweaked the recipe to be more clear and added a quick recipe video. – Adam and Joanne

Simple, Soft and Chewy Granola Bars Recipe

  • PREP
  • COOK
  • TOTAL

These granola bars are so much better than what you can by at the store, especially since you can substitute for your favorite dried fruit or nuts. While these are very simple to make, there is a 2-hour wait for the bars to firm up enough to cut. Feel free to add your favorite dried fruit, nuts or chocolate to these – it’s completely up to you. Since we use a 1/3 cup of honey, we like to splurge on higher quality honey.

Makes 12 bars

You Will Need

2 1/2 cups (230 grams) old fashioned rolled oats

1/2 cup (80 grams) whole almonds, coarsely chopped

1/3 cup (113 grams) honey

1/4 cup (56 grams) unsalted butter, cut into pieces

1/4 cup (50 grams) packed light brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 cup (60 grams) dried cranberries, coarsely chopped

1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons (65 grams) mini chocolate chips

Directions

  • Toast Oats and Nuts
  • Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Line bottom and sides of a 8-inch or 9-inch square pan with aluminum foil. Then lightly oil or spray with cooking spray.

    Add oats and almonds to a small baking sheet then bake 5 minutes, stir and bake another 3 to 5 minutes until lightly toasted. Transfer to a large bowl.

    • Make Bars
    • Combine butter, honey, brown sugar, vanilla extract and the salt in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally until butter melts and the sugar completely dissolves.

      Pour butter mixture in to bowl with toasted oats and almonds. Mix well. Let cool about 5 minutes then add cranberries and a 1/4 cup of the mini chocolate chips. Stir to combine. (The chocolate chips will most likely melt a little. This is fine, they turn into glue and help to hold the bars together).

      Transfer oat mixture to lined pan then use a rubber spatula or damp finger tips to firmly press the mixture into the pan. (Press hard here, this way the bars will stay together once cooled and cut — We press for about one minute to be extra safe).

      Scatter remaining 2 tablespoons of chocolate chips over pressed granola mixture then use a rubber spatula to gently press them into the top. Cover then refrigerate at least 2 hours. Remove block of granola mixture from pan then peel away aluminum foil. Cut into 12 bars.

      Store bars in an airtight container for up to one week. For the softest bars, keep at room temperature. For slightly harder bars, store in the fridge.

Adam and Joanne's Tips

  • Nutrition facts: The nutrition facts provided below are estimates. We have used the USDA Supertracker recipe calculator to calculate approximate values.

If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #inspiredtaste — We love to see your creations on Instagram and Facebook! Find us: @inspiredtaste

Nutrition Per Serving: Calories 210 / Protein 4 g / Carbohydrate 30 g / Dietary Fiber 3 g / Total Sugars 16 g / Total Fat 10 g / Saturated Fat 4 g / Cholesterol 10 mg
AUTHOR: Adam and Joanne Gallagher

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525 comments… Leave a Comment
  • Anabel November 13, 2014, 12:33 pm

    I substituted honey with brown rice syrup, the cranberries with chopped dates, used 1 tbsp less of butter, carob chips (1/2 the amount) instead of chocolate, and walnuts instead of almonds. It tastes delicious warm! I cant wait til I get to try it in two hours. Thank you for the recipe!

    Reply
    • Anabel November 13, 2014, 12:34 pm

      I also drizzled some maple syrup on it 🙂

      Reply
  • Maggie November 12, 2014, 2:46 pm

    I’ll say first I’m one of those people who only uses a recipe as a guideline. Yours is a great one for a chewy granola bar! I substituted coconut oil, light Karo and added sunflower seeds for half the almonds and half and half chocolate and butterscotch chips, and raisins. This is what I had on hand and they really came out just as you said, chewy and intact! Thanks a bunch!

    Reply
  • Tony November 10, 2014, 4:44 pm

    Great tips. Mine have been falling apart for months because I wasn’t compacting proper LY and was putting all of it in the oven !

    Reply
  • mohan November 9, 2014, 11:22 pm

    Thsi recipie works like a wonder to get the right kind of chewy mix
    loved it

    Reply
  • Pat Robinson November 5, 2014, 5:29 pm

    Can maple syrup be used in the place of honey?

    Reply
    • Pat Robinson November 5, 2014, 5:31 pm

      Thanks, I will.

      Reply
  • KB November 5, 2014, 2:05 pm

    My friend gave me some granola bars using this recipe. Each of our family of six enjoyed these very much. I asked my friend for th amazing recipe. We love granola bars and always bought the Kind brand. These are much better! I have enjoyed making these. Thank you!!! Also, I can’t have nuts, so I substitute with sunflower seeds. Today I also added pumpkin seeds and it was delicious! Oh, also I soak cranberries/raisins for about 1/2 hour before adding chocolate. 5 stars!

    Reply
  • Georgiana October 31, 2014, 6:18 am

    Thank you so much for sharing! And an extra thank you for sharing the recipe in grams too. I am from Bucharest, Romania (Europe) and I always struggle when it comes to transform ounces in grams.I just made the bars and cant wait to taste them. 🙂

    Reply
  • Dianna October 2, 2014, 9:07 pm

    Could I use Maple syrup (real) instead of honey? just to change up the flavour occasionally… so far we have made the chocolate version with coconut and sunflower seeds and now a Pumpkin Spice rendition with coconut, sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds and real white chocolate sprinkles to fancy them up 🙂

    We have a nut free school so just seeds etc in ours

    Reply
    • Joanne October 3, 2014, 11:09 am

      That sounds delicious! We have not tried replacing the honey with maple syrup ourselves, but if you try it we would love to hear how it went 🙂

      Reply
  • Amber August 15, 2014, 9:12 pm

    I made these today for my son who is going camping. He loved them. I used raisins instead of cranberries. Thank you for the recipe.

    Reply
  • Angie Free August 13, 2014, 12:20 pm

    Wow!
    This recipe is exactly what i was looking for – to make my own version of Frusili bars (UK).
    I have made it twice now and both my children and my husband love them!
    I made them with local Lincolnshire honey which gave them a lovely taste, and have now got used to waiting just a little while before i press in the last of the chocolate chips before cooling them!
    I used a silicon cake tin rather than the foil lined tin, and it works a treat – you can just peel it off!
    They are delicious -Thank you!

    Reply

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