Peanut Butter Granola Bars

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This recipe is in response to a post I wrote the other day.  You can read about that here.  After that post, I had many requests for a healthier homemade version.  Here is my first option.  I hope to have others in the future too. :)

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These bars are very similar to my Peanut Butter Banana Breakfast Cookies.  They came out yummy and were kid friendly too.

It is all over Meadow’s face.  Even my mostly tube fed baby ate some!

This would make a good afternoon snack too.  I often snack on my homemade granola in the afternoons for a sweet treat.  You can find one of those recipes here.

So here is the recipe.

Peanut Butter Granola Bars

2 1/2 cups rolled oats
1 banana mashed
1/3 cup peanut butter (For an allergy friendly recipe click here.)
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/3 cup raw honey or maple syrup
2 T milk (I used almond milk)
1/2 tsp salt
2 T chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350.  Mix all dry ingredients in one bowl.  In a sauce pan, on medium heat, combine the banana, peanut butter, maple syrup and milk.  Stir until combined.  Add peanut butter mixture to the dry ingredients and mix well.  Line a pan with parchment paper.

I do this because it is so easy to just lift them out of the pan and cut with a pizza cutter.  I do, however, reuse the same piece of parchment over and over again.  There is no reason to throw it away after one use.  I just store it in the cabinet with the baking pans.

Bake them in the oven for about 20-25 minutes.  Let them cool completely before cutting.  I store them in a plastic container separated by parchment paper.  They should keep for about two weeks, although mine will not last that long!  Enjoy!

What other flavors would you like to see?

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130 thoughts on “Peanut Butter Granola Bars

  1. i will make these. Can I use real milk?
    Do you have one without peanut butter?
    I would like to put sesame seeds, sunflower seeds,
    flax seed meal, hemp seeds, raisins almonds, walnuts etc etc. These would be great to take with us when we go places.

    • I used 1 T almond milk. Real milk would probably work well. All I used the milk for was to thin the peanut butter out a bit. All those additions sound good too, but keep in mind if you add a lot of dried ingredients, you will probably need to balance out the wet a bit. This is the only bar recipe I have up so far, but I am planning on making others too. I also have several granola recipes up and that travels well too if you keep in in a small plastic container or zip lock bag. :)

  2. Great article.. Definitely a recipe I’d like to try!

    Question: what is the measurement?
    1/4 baking soda
    1/4 raw honey or maple syrup

    1/4 Cup??? 1/4 Tablespoon??

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  4. Just finished making these and realized I forgot to add the banana, duh! I nibbled on it before it went in the oven and it’s pretty tasty. We’ll see what happens!

  5. Just made these with tahini and subbed some unsweetened coconut for the oatmeal… 4 kids loved them! This is such a versatile recipe that I will definitely be going back to it.

    • I am so glad you liked it. It is very versatile. That is one of the things I love about it. Your version sounds good too. I love tahini, but my little one is allergic to sesame seeds.

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  8. I think I can make these with cranberries. I might even substitute the chocolate chips and try other dried fruits. Thank you for the healthy recipe.

    • Sure! I love this recipe because it is so versatile. I often sub the chocolate chips for dried fruit as well. You can even sub the pb for sunflower butter. I hope you enjoy it. :)

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  13. Hi there,

    Can you tell me what size pan you used? I have spread the mixture into a cookie sheet, cuz that’s what your pan looks like, but I think mine is too big! How thick are your bars? Thanks a lot. This is the first recipe of yours I’m trying. I’m not a big cook, so I need exact instructions! Not ready to wing it yet! Cheers.

      • Oh okay, that’s better, I used a huge cookie sheet, filled about a third of it!! I might have over cooked them a bit, they’re tasty though! Thanks!

        • Sure! The first time I ever made granola bars, I did the same thing. Cooking and baking is a learning process, but I promise, it gets easier! :)

        • You should be able to find them anywhere. If you have trouble, you can use Enjoy Life Chocolate Chips. They are vegan also and you can get them at Target. I used the carob chips because they are less sweet.

          • are carob chips and that other brand you mentioned whole foods? are they processed at all?

          • They are technically processed, but their ingredient lists are much cleaner than Nestle Tollhouse. I use the chips in moderation. The carob chips have very little sugar. If you want a cleaner option than that, you can use some dark chocolate that is at least 70% cacao.

  14. So, I just made these for the first time and they don’t stick well. Any recommendations, more honey? cook longer? This was my first attempt at granola bars. Thanks.

  15. I just made these for the first time yesterday and am wondering if I undercooked them. What is the texture supposed to be like? Love love love your blog and follow you on Facebook…such great information!

  16. I have made this recipe twice and each time the bars do not hold together. They become more of a crumble. Any ideas on what I am missing?

    • Really? I have no idea why they wouldn’t hold. No one has ever mentioned that to me. When I make them, I push the mixture into the pan and then press it down tight, using the parchment paper. You can also try adding a bit more peanut butter to help hold them. I am sorry the recipe hasn’t worked out for you. :(

  17. I am wondering if I can substitute Agave Nectar for the honey and maple syrup?. It is what is in the cupboard and I want to make these!! :)

  18. I have made these a few times with different combinations of seed butters (in place of the PB) and honey/maple syrup. So far, our favourite combination is pumpkin seed butter and maple syrup. All the batches I’ve made thus far have been delicious and held together extremely well. I use a 9×9 pan and I always use your tip for lifting them out of the pan on the parchment paper and cutting them with a pizza cutter. It works awesome! Thanks again!

      • No, I haven’t tried making my own seed butters just yet. I use the Omega Nutrition Organic Pumpkin Seed Butter. We really like it but it is quite expensive so we try not to go overboard with using it. I had never tried it until I learned of my daughter’s peanut allergy and began looking for PB alternatives. It is green in colour so it makes your granola bars a little greenish but they taste great! :)

  19. I love these! Have them around all the time. I do like them a bit sweeter so I use a little more maple syrup and more chocolate chips. Yum. Thank you!

  20. Made these today with 1 1/2 cups oats and 1 cup nature’s path chocolate crisps for my daughter’s softball team. They look delish! These get made at least once a week in our house :)

  21. What kind of rolled oats and PB should I be using? Or what brands do I avoid? Can wait to make these for my kids. Thanks :)

    • I get the fresh ground peanut butter at the store or I just make it myself. All you need is peanuts and food processor. I get rolled oats out of the bulk bin at Whole Foods or Sprouts. Much cheaper that way.

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  23. I have made these 3 times in the last 2 weeks. Just made a double batch to take up to the cottage with us this weekend! I have omitted the banana and added applesauce instead. (Not a fan of banana in anything but banana bread) I have also added 2T. of both milled flax seed and chia seeds for added protein and fiber. I add powdered milk instead of the alternative milk. Working my way toward veganism, just not there yet. :-) Thank you for this recipe!!

    • That is so awesome! I am glad you are enjoying it. I have made it with applesauce as well and it’s great that way. I never thought to add chia seeds. Great idea!

  24. I just made these this afternoon – they are delicious. I added cinnamon and like the result. The next time I make them (which is likely to be very soon) I am going to try the applesauce instead of the banana. And the cinnamon with the apple flavor should really be good. Excellent find.
    Thank you.

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  26. Just got up and made this as soon as I saw ur post on fb this am….batter tastes and smell Delish! Can’t wait till they r done! Simple quick recipe and I know what I am getting unlike store bought!

  27. Love these! I’ve never found a granola bar recipe that would set right, always ends up too gooey or dry, but this sounds like a great combination of ingredients!
    Thanks for the step by step, I can’t wait to try them out! :)

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  29. I just made these (my first granola bar attempt ever) and they are outstanding! I did add some chia seed and raisin and used sunbutter instead of peanut butter because my daughter’s allergic to peanuts. I also had to use instant granola because I ran out of the old fashioned rolled oats but it still turned out great! I am going to make these frequently.

    • I don’t I’m sorry. I think if you plug the ingredients into caloriecount.com, you can find out. I do have a pumpkin granola bar recipe too. :)

    • I don’t I’m sorry. I think if you plug the ingredients into caloriecount.com, you can find out. I do have a pumpkin granola bar recipe too. :)

  30. I have tried quite a few recipes over the past couple of years to find ‘the best’ homemade bar alternative to buying the packs. There are much better recipes. This one looks healthier than most, but it lacks in taste and consistency. The proportion of wet to dry is wrong in my opinion. My kids called it an epic fail. Try Smitten Kitchen’s.

  31. I made these yesterday with sunbutter and baked for 20 mins. I left them in fridge overnight as they were pretty soft (probably should have baked longer). But today the top layer is black and under that is green. Anyone else have this happen? I assumed the black was from the banana turning color and they smelled great so I started eating one and that is when I noticed green inside. Wouldn’t think they could mold overnight in the fridge so I am not sure what turned green. I also had added a T of flax and wheat germ but otherwise followed recipe exactly.

    • I am not sure what happened. I have never had that happen before and nobody else has mentioned it. I’m sorry about that outcome, but I am not sure what could have happened.

  32. These are super yummy! I make them every few weeks for snacks. Today i added crushed peanuts for more protein and they are delicious.

  33. Thanks for the tip about reusing the parchment paper! I’m learning so much from you! Would you recommend storing them in the fridge?

    • I used an odd size. I think it was a 5X9? I have also used an 8×8 pan and it works well too, although the bars are a bit thicker.

  34. Last night I made the Gingerbread Granola bars and they were so incredibly awesome, I made these today for the rest of my family (they don’t like gingerbread). I can’t wait for them to get home to try them!

  35. I am about to make these, but don’t have any chocolate chips. Do you think I could add some cocoa instead? If so, how much? Thanks!

  36. I am a processed food junkie. My palette needs to be reeducated as to what real food tastes like. I made the granola bars, simple recipe, easy to make. I would like something a little sweeter, so perhaps I will use applesauce in the recipe the next time I made these, which will be soon! Any other suggestions? I can’t eat nuts :(
    Thanks,
    Kathleen

    • You can use sunflower seeds in place of the peanut butter. If you need a little more sweetness, you can add a little more maple syrup. I didn’t change my palette overnight either. I slowly cut the sugar in recipes more and more until I was used to something a little less sweet. Maybe you can try that too?

    • You can use sunflower seeds in place of the peanut butter. If you need a little more sweetness, you can add a little more maple syrup. I didn’t change my palette overnight either. I slowly cut the sugar in recipes more and more until I was used to something a little less sweet. Maybe you can try that too?

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  40. Because my daughter doesn’t tolerate cows milk well, we have had to put her on almond milk. Because of this I am trying to up her protein and fats in other areas. Would there be a way to add more protein to this bar? Obviously I don’t want to be using protein powders.

  41. Thanks for the recipe! It’s my first time making them homemade and the taste is great. I used natural PB and added dried cranberries, sliced almonds, shelled hemp seeds and sunflower seeds. I added a bit more PB to balance out the extra dry ingredients. Any idea how well these guys freeze? Thanks again for sharing your recipe!

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