I’ve been working at the granola bars again. This time, I went an entirely different route. The last three times I made them (until I got them right), I went the peanut butter, nut, chocolate route. And they were crispy and crunchy. And delicious. But as good as those were, I was itching to try something different. So this time, I decided to go more of a chewy, fruity, cinnamonny route. And they are equally as delicious in a completely different way. These are more reminiscent of a cookie, with their chewy texture, and of banana bread with their cinnamonny, nutty, banana flavors. They’re like banana, nut, cranberry, oatmeal cookie bread granola bars. I’m not sure that name would catch on… Oh, and did I mention they’re low fat?
I based these granola bars off this recipe, but as usual, I made some changes. My version makes 9 bars in an 8 x 8 inch pan. If you want to make a 9 x 13, take a look at the link, but peek back at my recipe, because I added honey and made a few other minor changes.
And heads up – if you don’t eat these all in a day or so, you’re going to want to store them in the refrigerator. If you don’t, they will get moldy, what with the applesauce and bananas. Not that I did that or anything.
Low Fat Chewy Granola Bars
- 2 1/3 cups old fashioned oats
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans
- 2 large ripe bananas
- slightly less than 1/2 cup unsweetened natural applesauce
- 2 T honey
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 3/4 tsp cinnamon
- 1/3 tsp nutmeg
- 1 T and 1 tsp milled flax seed
- 1/2 tsp salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Spread oats out on baking sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes, until they are lightly toasted.
In a bowl, smash bananas with a fork until mostly smooth and then stir in applesauce.
In a large bowl, mix together oats, pecans, cranberries, cinnamon, nutmeg, flax seed, and salt. Stir in banana/applesauce mixture and honey and mix well.
Line an 8 x 8 baking sheet with parchment paper and pour in oat mixture. Press down well with your fingers or a spatula.
Bake for about 20 minutes, until the top is brown. Lift up by the parchment paper to remove the granola from the pan and cool on a wire rack. Once cooled, cut and enjoy!