It’s back to school!! Which means time to start planning and prepping healthy back to school snacks! My go-to fall snack are easy, back to school, almond cranberry chocolate granola bars. They are amazing chewy goodness all in one bite! Oh yes, please.
Almond cranberry chocolate granola bars are the perfect addition for your kids’ lunch boxes. But they are also the perfect snack for work or for the on-the-go lifestyle. When I am in a rush in the morning, I can just grab one for the road and head out the door. I love that they are gluten-free, vegan, and healthy. I don’t have to worry about all the excess sugar that those boxed granola bars have. Which means I can feel less guilty about the few chocolate chips that are thrown in there.
Granola bars might seem so complicated to make but let me fill you in on a secret. They are actually pretty easy. Once you have all your ingredients gathered together, you basically combine everything together and spread them onto a baking dish. Plus, you can make a big batch or two at once because these granola bars are freezer-friendly!! Go ahead and simplify your life!
It’s back to school and time to fill those lunch-boxes with chewy almond cranberry chocolate granola bars. They’re healthy, vegan, and gluten-free!
- 1 and 1/2 cups old fashioned rolled oats
- 3/4 cup sliced almonds
- 1/3 cup maple syrup (or honey)
- 3 tablespoons butter, unsalted
- 2 tablespoons smooth peanut butter
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar, packed
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup dried cranberries
- 1/4 cup chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 325 F.
- In a medium saucepan, combine maple syrup, butter, peanut butter, brown sugar, vanilla and salt over medium-low heat. Cook and stir until smooth and until butter melts and sugar dissolves.
- In a medium bowl, combine oats and almonds. Pour liquid mixture over the oats and honey and stir to combine. Let the mixture cool for about 10 minutes.
- Add cranberries and chocolate chips. Stir to combine.
- Transfer mixture to a parchment-lined 9″ x 9″ casserole dish or baking tray and firmly press mixture into the pan using a spatula or the back of a glass. Make sure it is packed very tightly.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes (add more time for crunchier granola bars).
- Cool completely in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours and cut into bars.
- These granola bars can be stored in an airtight container for up to one week. They are also freezer-friendly!
- For softer granola bars, store at room temperature. To keep them harder, store in the refrigerator.