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Sunday, September 26, 2010

A Granola Bar made without baking

Granola Bar Made without Baking

This recipe follows the one given by the blogger of Joyful Abode.  She seems to have more recently gone grain-free, but this granola bar of hers remains popular to readers and googlers, and I decided to try it out.  Of course, I have changed some things, but the basic ideas remain the same.

My Ingredients

  • 2 c Oats 200g
  • 3/4 c Wheat Germ 71g
  • 3/4 c Pepitas 94g
  • 1/2 c Almonds 73g
  • 1/2 c Hazelnuts 67g
  • 4 Tbsp Unsalted Butter 56g
  • 2/3 c Brown Sugar 155g
  • 1/2 c Honey 168g
  • 2 tsp Vanilla 12g
  • 1/2 tsp Kosher Salt <1g
  • 1/2 c Flaxseeds 76g
  • 2 eggs
  • 8oz Dried Fruit: 227g
  • Dried Apples 50g
  • Dried Pears 27g
  • Dried Papaya 25g
  • Raisins 50g
  • Dates 25g
  • Missing: 50g


  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  • Toast the oats, seeds, wheat germ for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally (this is mostly to get them warm rather than roast them). Don't roast the nuts.

    Grains to Roast
  • Chop the nuts to a coarse consistency.  I put them in a plastic bag and hit them with the side of a meat tenderizer to break them into chunks.

     Nuts coarsely chopped
  • Line a glass baking dish with oven spray and waxed paper.  I sprayed the paper too, but I probably didn't need to.
  • Chop your dried fruit into manageable sized pieces, if necessary (raisin sized pieces are okay)

    Dried Fruits

  • In a pot on the stovetop, bring to a simmer the sugar, honey, butter, vanilla and egg.  Don't get this boiling, but stir frequently until everything is smooth.

     Liquid Simmered

  • Turn off the oven, and dump the oat-seed mixture into a large bowl and pour the warm liquid over it, mixing everything thoroughly.
  • Pour this into the prepared glass baking dish, sprinkle the crushed nuts on top and press down hard with some more wax paper.

    Mix it all up and pour it into a flat glass pan

    Press it all down really really hard while warm

  • Let cool 2-3 hours and cut into granola sized pieces.  Put into a container and put into the freezer, taking some out as required for work-lunches.

     Sorry but you have to eat the crumbs

What's different in my version.

I have eggs.
I added flax seeds and took out 50g of dried fruit
I took her advice and added the nuts to the top later, and didn't roast them.

The one thing I really like about this recipe is the way it gets pressed down.  That seems to be an excellent idea.  I wonder if it might help to put some weight on it, too, while it is cooling?  Like another stackable glass bowl, with something heavy in it?

I cut this after 2 hours.  It was still very very gooey.  And it did not stick together very well.  I immediately put it in the freezer, as I have been doing.  But I ate the crumbs, and one tiny slice.

So how did it taste?


To be fair to the blogger who originated this recipe, I changed a lot.  For one thing, I used buckwheat honey, which is far too overpowering for this granola bar.  But the main trouble was the amount of honey, not the type of honey.  It was far too sweet and sticky.  It was so sweet, I would say the honey should be cut not in half, but in 1/4 or even less.  Yes, it was that bad.

What else I'd change next:

I'd include more grains, like
  • sesame seeds
  • millet
  • amaranth
  • quinoa
  • rye berries
  • wheat berries
I'd also try
  • sunflower seeds (she had this one, but I had run out, so I used pumpkin seeds)
  • pistachio nuts instead of hazelnuts
  • coconut on top with or in place of the nuts
  • less fruit, especially no raisins (they are too sweet for this)
I wonder if a ten-minute stirring of some of these seeds and grains atop the stove in a bit of water until they release their starches and gums and became somewhat gluey might go well with her technique, instead of using so much honey, which is too sweet for my taste.

But most importantly, I'd try

  • 1/8 c honey
  • 1/3 c brown sugar

Notes to Myself
  • Try these changes to this recipe if you ever try this again.  Amounts, I am just guessing at.
  • Seeds & Grains to roast 10-12 minutes in the oven @ 400 F:
    • 2 c Oats
    • 3/4 c Wheat Germ
    • 3/4 c Sunflower Seeds
    • 3/4 c Pumpkin Seeds
    • 1/2 c Amaranth
    • 1/2 c Sesame Seeds
  • Seeds & Grains to boil on stovetop 10-12 minutes:
    • 1/2 c Wheat Berries
    • 1/2 c Rye Berries
    • 1/2 c Quinoa
    • 1/2 c Millet
    • 1 1/2 c Water to boil away and/or swell the seeds & grains
  • Other Liquid to simmer on stovetop 10-12 minutes:
    • 2 eggs
    • 1/8 c honey
    • 1/3 c brown sugar
    • 4 T butter
  • Fruits to stir into Seeds, Grains, and Liquid before pouring into glass container:
    • 25g Dried Apples
    • 25g Dried Papaya
    • 25g Dried Currants
    • 25g Dried Apricots
    • 25g Dried Cranberries
  • Nuts to press into the top:
    • 1 1/2 c Pistachio nuts

1 comment:

  1. Sorry to hear about your honey, honey!