SO GRANOLA

I'm actually so not "so granola" but I sooo love these homemade granola bars.  As I've mentioned previously on the blog, I'm not one for eating cumbersome breakfasts so I'm always looking for healthy alternatives that start my morning right. These granola bars are an incredibly delicious morning pick me up that are jam packed with nutrients and easy to grab on the go.  You don't need to love sleeping under the stars or hugging trees to enjoy eating these bad boys, trust me.  You can also take creative liberties by easily customizing them to your personal tastes and what you have available in your pantry!

Ingredients

2 cups oats

1 cup chopped unsalted cashews or any nuts ya like!

2 tablespoons chia seeds

4 tablespoons flaxseeds

3 tablespoons coconut oil

1/3 cup honey

1/4 brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

Extras

3/4 dried berries of any and all sorts

1/4 sunflower seeds

1/2 cup peanut butter or chocolate chips

Prep

Chop your nuts down to a size comparable to an oat.  Combine oats and nuts on a baking sheet and pop in the oven at 350°F for approximately five minutes or until a little golden.

While your nuts and oats are toasting in the oven, place a small saucepan on on stove at medium-low heat.  Combine coconut oil, cinnamon, vanilla extract, brown sugar and honey until all granules of sugar are completely dissolved and make sure it never reaches boiling.  

While this sweet concoction is simmering, remove your nuts and oats and pour them into a mixing bowl, stirring in chia and flax seeds. 

Now you can pour in your liquid and any other extra ingredients you'd like to add for flavor.  I stick to 1/4-3/4 cup for my extras.  Extras can include any dried fruit you like, sunflower seeds, coconut flakes, peanut butter, chocolate or carob chips, etc.  Anything goes really so experiment with any bite size flavors you like!

Once all of your ingredients are sufficiently combined and super sticky, it is important to pop the mixture into a 9x9 pan quickly!  If your liquid starts to harden before the mixture is in the pan, it is game over for your granola bars.  It is also super important to press your mixture down in the pan as much as possible so the bars hold together once cut up and removed from the pan.  The harder you press down (with your hands or the back of a spoon), the better the granola bars will hold together!

Place your pan into the refrigerator for a couple of hours and let the mixture completely cool and harden before chopping it up into whatever size bars you'd like.  Note: These bars are super filling so you don't need to cut them as big as store-bought granola bars!  Enjoy!