|Closing my eyes in joy ;)|
Tara started with a recipe from the Active Life Cooking blog and modified it to suit our tastes; she's come up with a version we all so love. She even made a batch as a birthday gift for my trail running/loving husband this spring. Put these on your summer snack plan. These are PERFECT for hiking and camping, but I wouldn't wait until you're on the trail to make these awesome snacks.
Tara's Granola Bars
• 2 cups Old Fashioned Oats
• 2 tbsp of your favorite “chaser”: like millet (shown), flax seed, wheat germ, etc. (optional - but Tara uses some, and it's great.)
• 1/2 cup Smooth Peanut Butter
• 1/2 cup Honey
• 1 tbsp Brown Sugar (optional) (I have NO IDEA why Blogger lined this up over here!)
- 1/2 cup of your favorite “mix-ins,” like sunflower seeds, raisins, cranberries, dried blueberries, figs, almonds, pecans, whatever your hiking friends love
- 1 tsp salt (optional, and really not needed if you use salted butter or salted nuts)
- Preheat oven to 400F.
- Prepare a small saucepan with honey, peanut butter, & brown sugar (if using).
- Line a 9×9 baking dish with parchment paper.
- Spread the oats (and chaser if needing toasting, such as millet or almonds) onto a deep dish baking pan. Place pan into oven.
- Turn the saucepan to low to med-low heat.
- *You want the mixture to get warm and combine smoothly, but be careful not to burn.
- While oats toast, prepare additives in a med mixing bowl.
- Watch oats closely so they don't over brown or burn.
- When golden brown, remove from oven. (About 5-10 min. baking, shoot for 7)
- When oats are done, combine with the additives in the medium bowl.
- On top of this, add the peanut honey mixture.
- Mix well with a wooden spoon; this takes a little kitchen muscle.
- Put the mixture into the dish lined with parchment paper and spread evenly.
- They should be about 1/4 inch deep.
- Carefully lift out paper from baking dish and cool on baking rack.
- After about 30 min or when cool, flip the bar over to cool completely.
- After they've cooled some more, score the bars.
Makes 18 bars ... and very happy, energetic hikers. :) This I speak from experience!