Healthy Granola Bars
I’ve been on a bit of a health kick recently. I have also been binge watching Good Eats with Alton Brown from the Food Network. He’s offered a recipe for home-made granola bars. I thought “Hey, I want to try those!” – and that’s exactly what I did.
Take a peak at Alton Brown’s recipe: Home-made Granola Bars (Our inspiration for this post)
This recipe is all natural, no instant mix packages or anything. I had to take a trip to the Bulk Barn to get ingredients needed.
- 2 cups of rolled oats
- 1.2 cup of raw sunflower seeds
- 1 cup of sliced almonds
- 1/2 cup of wheat germ
- 1/2 cup of honey
- 1/4 cup of dark brown sugar
- 1 ounce of butter
- 2 tsp of vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp of salt
- 1/2 cup of three different dried fruits (cherries, blueberries, apricots, cranberries, etc) for a total 1 1/2 cup.
Healthy Granola Bars By Alton Brown:
- Butter a 9 by 9-inch glass baking dish and set aside. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Spread the oats, sunflower seeds, almonds, and wheat germ onto a half-sheet pan. Place in the oven and toast for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- In the meantime, combine the honey, brown sugar, butter, extract and salt in a medium saucepan and place over medium heat. Cook until the brown sugar has completely dissolved.
- 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, add the dried fruit, and stir to combine.
- 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.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely. Cut into squares and store in an airtight container for up to a week.
Recipe courtesy of Alton Brown, 2005
My Experience with Alton’s Recipe
We had a ton of fun with this recipe. We got all our ingredients together and it was very simple to follow the directions in this recipe.
We followed the ingredients listed, just made it a bit bigger of a batch. One part we noted when watching Good Eats is he uses raw sunflower seeds in their shell. You can choose to use sunflower seeds that are NOT in their shell – some people may find it odd to have shell sunflower seeds but it is REALLY tasty. It adds a great crunchy and some nice flavor. You can also alter what nuts you use, or what fruits you use, it is a nicely versatile recipe.
My “Opps” Moment
As I noted I made a larger batch, so I made 1 1/2 of the recipe so I just added an extra 1/2 of everything.
I have a bad habit of just going for it and not planning everything. So I figured the amounts in my head as I went and I think I added a little too much honey at that point.
Too Much Honey!
My granola bars are SUPER tasty, but also very crunchy. This is okay with me, I love anything crunchy, but some people (like my husband) don’t appreciate the added crunch.
Not Following ALL the Directions…
I thought I would be “smart” and use parchment paper to save myself some dish washing. It was indeed not a smart idea at all!
Never use parchment paper when using honey mixtures.
I had parchment paper stuck to the entire bottom of my granola bars. Luckily I was able to save it after about 15 minutes of picking off all the parchment paper. In the end – stick with buttering your pan 😉
Tips for this Recipe
When you have your ingredients roasting, do not start the stove-top melting of the brown sugar and honey until the roasting is about 5 minutes from being done.
I started right away, and I over cooked the brown sugar a little and caramelized it a little too much (adding to my very crunchy end result)..
Also, when you remove the roasted ingredients from the oven, pour them into a bowl before you pour into the pot. I went straight from the baking sheet to the pot and I had quite the mess to clean up!
My Thoughts on The Recipe
Learning from my mistakes I will definitely be making more batches of these! Maybe with a little less honey, and making a bit less of a mess.
These healthy granola bars are great for you, taste yummy and are super easy to make! I will be in search of more of Alton Brown’s recipes for my kitchen adventures.