There is something very satisfying about a recipe that requires very little cooking, yet packs a very big reward. These no bake granola bars are just that. They require only 7 ingredients, are ready in no time at all, and are nutritionally dense. Best of all, they wear a million hats at the same time; they travel well, are great for breakfast, snack time, and lunch boxes, they’re portable, mess-free, and great for all kids and adults of all ages.
This recipe is made of toasted oats mixed with peanut butter, dates, apricots, maple syrup, vanilla, and coconut oil. Just press together in a pan, chill, and voila, happy little bellies. And feel free to adapt the recipe to whatever you have on hand or like best. Swap the apricots for raisins, cranberries, or dark chocolate chips, use sunflower seed butter for a nut-free and school-safe option, add chia or flax seeds, or use honey/agave nectar instead of maple syrup. They’ll store in the fridge for up to a week, but I doubt they’ll last that long!
These Granola Bars Are:
- Packed with protein and fiber
- 1 cup pitted dates
- ½ cup unsweetened peanut/almond butter (use sunflower seed for a nut-free option)
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups toasted rolled oats* (you can also use un-toasted oats)
- 1 cup finely chopped dried apricots
- Process dates in a food processor for about 1 minute until paste-like.
- Combine nut/seed butter, maple syrup, coconut oil, and vanilla in a small saucepan over medium-low heat until warmed through and smooth.
- In a large bowl combine dates and oats, mix together well. Pour nut butter mixture over the oats and stir together until thoroughly combined (I like to use my hands here). Mix in chopped apricots.
- Press mixture down into a parchment lined 8x8 baking pan. Use your hands to evenly flatten mixture, a layer of saran wrap makes this easy.
- Chill in the refrigerator for 20 minutes until firm. Cut into bars or squares.
- Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to one week.