Saturday, August 14, 2010

Pecan Flaxseed Granola Bars

I usually ride my bike to get where I need to go and hunger comes with the territory. So I try to pack protein-rich granola bars in my bag to fill the gap between bigger meals. For those of you who buy granola bars from the store you know that they only come in packs of 6 bars. That is a box a week! What?! Homemade granola bar time.

Granola bars are so variable. Pretty much anything that you have on hand will work as long as you have the big stuff: oats, nuts, flour, sweetener (any will do), and something wet to hold it all together.

What I used: pecans, peanut butter, milled flax seed and flax seed oil, coconut shreds, chocolate chips, maple syrup, agave, applesauce, brown sugar, vanilla extract, and a little baking soda because lots of recipes online had it in there.

General dry measurements:
2 1/2 Cups oats
1 Cup flour
1/2 Cup brown sugar
2-3 Tbsp milled flax seed
1/2-3/4 Cup chopped pecans
coconut shreds and chocolate chips to taste (maybe a scant 1/3 Cup each)
1 tsp baking soda

Even more general wet measurements:
1-2 tsp flax seed oil
1-2 tsp vanilla extract
1 Cup applesauce
1/2 Cup peanut butter
1 Tbsp agave
<1 Tbsp maple syrup
I really didn't pay attention to the measurements because I was just looking for a dense granola batter. It isn't supposed to be like cake or banana bread viscosity. And it definitely took a little muscle to mix this stuff together. I added more applesauce to get all the dry ingredients incorporated. Once together, I put it in a greased 9x13 and evened it out to the corners.
In the oven at 400 degrees for ~20 minutes until the edges were browned and the whole thing mostly just looked like extreme oatmeal cookies.
I let the granola cool for 10 minutes and then sliced them into recognizable bar shapes.
Intuitively, letting the granola cool a bit allows it to firm up and hold shape when slicing. When they cool completely they are hard (Well, more hard. Mine never got crunchy) and able to be separated the rest of the way. I think I could cook these longer to make them more crunchy. They also tend to crumble and I think it is a result of them being a little on the dry side before baking.

As far as replacing store bought granola: I'll count these as a win!


casey said...


Randi said...

Casey! I ate them all but will make more and you can help me finish them. A whole tray makes a lot of bars.

Nanci said...

I am very impressed!