I have a thing for granola. No, I’m not a trippy hippie. But I do love the healthy simplicity of a delicious granola bar while outside on a hike or as an afternoon snack at work.
The problem with most granola bar brands though is they’re laden with fat and unpronounceable ingredients – especially those fatty Nature Valley Granola Bars. Sure there are “healthy alternatives” like the Chewy Granola Bars from Kashi, but at $5 for a box of 6 tiny bars I think I’ll pass on even the organic manufactured versions. I’ll keep my cashi in my pocket, thank you very much. Smirk.
To show you that healthy and organic granola snacks can be had for less, I’ve put together a yummy homemade granola recipe for your snacking pleasure. If you’re not into bar shapes, go ahead and use a cookie cutter for no bake cookies! This is a no bake recipe that’s fun to make with your kids too!
- 2 cups cooked buckwheat, al dente
- 1 cup raw rolled oats
- 3 apples
- 1 cup dried cranberries, or raisins
- 1 cup dried apple slices, or other dried fruit
- 30 dates, pitted and soaked in water for 15 minutes (add more for sweeter snacks)
- 1 cup raw almonds
- 1 1/4 cups raw sunflower seeds
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
Yields 20 granola bars or around 30 cookies. I used all organic ingredients bought in bulk (no name generics) costing under $6 for the batch.
1. In a food processor, place 1 cup cooked buckwheat, cored apples (keep the peel), dates, honey, cinnamon, salt, and 1/4 cup sunflower seeds.
2. Grind until completely smooth. Transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl.
3. Add 1/4 cup sunflower seeds, 1/2 cup almonds, 1/2 cup cranberries, dried apple (or other fruit) slices to the food processor (you don’t need to rinse the bowl in between steps). Very coarsely chop the nuts, seeds, and fruit in a few quick pulses. Add them to the bowl with the apple mixture and combine well.
4. Add the oats, and remaining buckwheat, almonds, sunflower seeds, and cranberries to the mixture and combine.
If the dough is too moist, add a pinch more oats to the mixture. The dough should be sticky but not runny. The varying degrees of chopped nuts, seeds, and fruits give this granola an amazing texture.
5. Spread the granola dough on plastic wrap to shape into bars 1/2 inch thick and then chop into sections 4 inches long.
Alternatively, use a cookie cutter to shape the granola dough into no bake oatmeal cookies – perfect for kids’ lunches and snacks.
6. Place the granola bars or cookies onto dehydrator trays and dehydrate at 135 degrees for 4 hours. Flip the bars over and continue dehydrating for another hour, depending on how chewy and moist you prefer your granola bars. If you prefer very crunchy granola bars, then dehydrate for another 8 hours after flipping.
Granola bars get flipped!
7. Once completely cooled, store in an airtight container. To maintain freshness longer, store in the refrigerator for up to a week.
I would have taken photos of the finished homemade cookies, but they didn’t last long enough.
These are seriously yummy, healthy, and affordable snacks to make. Enjoy!
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