I’m a big time snacker.
And when it comes to my favorite snacks, bars are near the TOP of that list!
But not just any bar will do.
I’ve gotta have texture, flavor, and well, it’s gotta keep me satisfied for longer than forty-five minutes. 😉
I’ll admit that most often, I take the lazy way out and buy pre-packaged bars, but that wasn’t always the case. Anyone remember The Great Granola Bar Phase of 2012? There were ALMOND butter bars, peanut butter CHOCOLATE bars, and my personal favorite, cranberry and coconut PROTEIN bars! I had a million ideas for all sorts of other flavors, but well, since that last batch was made in my usual way of “oops, too wet…oops, too dry” and ended with a hefty amount of bars, I was pretty set on snacks for a while. And then my ADD set in and I was off to my next food phase.
But the other day, I made a SOLEMN VOW to start saving my pennies and get back to my bar-making ways!
Ok, so maybe that’s not exACTLY how it happened since these started as a batch granola, but WORK with me people! 😉
Besides, these babies are delicious!
Don’t just take my word for it…after two more test-batches to check my measurements and play around with substitutions, they went through a strict taste-testing panel of “normal” people…aka my coworkers…and PASSED! But the best part?
They didn’t even know they were gluten-free AND VEGAN! 😀
Chunky Monkey Granola Bars (GF, Vegan)
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Keywords: bake breakfast dessert snack dairy-free gluten-free vegan vegetarian kid-friendly bananas peanut butter oats chocolate chips bar
Ingredients (8 bars)
- 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
- 1/8 cup oil (or applesauce)
- 1/8 cup maple syrup
- 1 medium ripe banana, mashed
- 1/2 teaspoon banana extract/flavoring
- 1 1/2 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
- 1/4 cup peanut flour*
- 1 Tablespoon ground flax
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 Tablespoons dairy-free mini chocolate chips (I used Enjoy Life brand)
- 2 Tablespoons crushed freeze-dried banana chips (optional, but highly recommended for an even GREATER banana flavor!)*Use coupon code QQQ940 at iHerb.com for 5-10% off your first order!
1. Preheat oven to 350°F and coat an 8×8 baking dish with oil or non-stick spray.
2. In a microwave-safe bowl, combine peanut butter, oil (or applesauce), maple syrup, banana, and banana extract/flavoring. Stir and heat for 30 seconds on high.
3. In a mixing bowl, combine oats, peanut flour, flax, cinnamon, mini chocolate chips, and banana chips.
4. Pour microwaved peanut butter banana mixture over dry ingredients and stir well.
5. Transfer mixture to baking dish, pressing into pan, sprinkle additional chocolate chips on top if desired.
6. Bake for 15 minutes or until edges start to brown.
7. Cool in pan for at least 15-20 minutes before slicing into 8 bars.
8. Store in an airtight container for up to 1 week or freeze for later!
In other words, I think I’ve found my latest addiction!
I thought the bars made with oil (I used grapeseed, but you can use whatever you have on hand) had a bit more flavor, but one of my coworkers said she really liked the ones with applesauce better. Either way, I thought both batches held together nicely. I also made a batch using this brown rice protein powder instead of peanut flour…DON’T DO THAT! They got a thumbs down all around due to the fact that they turned out dry and tasted kinda fonky! Yes, I said FONKY! 😉
Again, this just serves as yet MORE proof that peanut flour absolutely rules and each and every one of you should have some in your pantry! Baaaaaa-hut, if you want a substitution, I think a GOOD-tasting vegan protein powder would work fine…or you could just add more oats. Either way, you’ve GOT to make these bars!
What are YOUR favorite homemade snacks?
I just started experimenting making homemade granola bars a few weekends ago, and I’ve loving it. It’s nice to know what’s going into them as opposed to buying pre-packaged ones. Look forward to try these out! They look awesome!
Thank you, Holly! I know, it’s amazing what all they stuff into those premade bars that doesn’t even NEED to be in there! 😯
I might be drooling over here….
I LOVE these and need them as my work snack so that I’m not about to punch my boss come 2pm! I still have yet to use peanut flour, and I muh muh muh must do it soon!!
Yes you MuhhhhhhhhhhhST! Then you can make some fabuloso treats that I can drool over! 😉
Homemade granola bars are, IMO, so much more satisfying than store bought ones! I think it’s the love that goes into making them 🙂 These are definitely right up my alley, all of my fave things. Chocolate, pb, and banana!
Yum!! I think I am going to make these for my co-workers. Do you think I can use vanilla extract in place of the banana flavor? I know it won’t be quite as banana-y ;), but I am thinking they would still be quite tasty?
Of course! Besides, you can’t go wrong with peanut butter and chocolate, right? Let me know what you think! 🙂
Oh. My. Gosh. These sound wonderful! I am a huge fan of Ben&Jerrys Chunky Monkey Ice Cream so these sound like they are totally up my alley 😉
Yum! I have been meaning to make granola bars since seeing Amanda’s recipe and now I have another one I want to make. All these ingredients sound healthy and filling which is perfect for an afternoon pick me up snack.
Aww, thank you, Nicole! I’d love to know what you think if you make them! I’ve still got a couple bars left, but I’m already thinking of new ideas for some no-bake creations…haha!
I knew it!! Peanut flour win!!
Haha I get that ADD too and all the flavors and “I could make a living off just making THESE” feeling leaves and moves on to the next thing!
Omg, EXACTLY! My coworker and I were having a very in depth conversation about granola just last night and she was telling me how her sister swears she could sell her go-to recipe! She makes it with sweetened condensed milk! 😯 You KNOW that has to be good!
And yeah, you totally called it! Ha!
Well, thanks to you, I bought 4 packs of Peanut Flour from Iherb last week. Side note, I got my package THE NEXT DAY. I was like holy smokes that’s some great service!! And now I have the peanut flour I need to make these 🙂 I’m actually going away this weekend to church camp as a counselor and seeing as how the cafeteria isn’t always loaded with the most healthy foods, Im planning on making up some bars to bring. I’m thinking these might be just the thing!
Although I don’t have an 1/8 Cup measurement….
Yessssss! Are they not the best? I’m always blown away by their fast shipping! And I’m SO glad you finally got some…you are going to be Ahhhhhh-dicted for sure! And I know you’ll end up coming up with some great creations…that I can steal! 😉
1/8 cup = 2 Tablespoons! 😀
Have fun at camp girlie!
The great granola bar phase made my chuckle 😉
Okay so I had a peanut flour ADDICTION a year ago. I actually loved it so much, but I had to retire it because it was getting out of control. There are two foods in the world that I have zero control over, well three technically, and those would be peanut flour and brie w/ crackers (the crackers aren’t my addiction, but they add dimension to brie). LOL
Great recipe by the way! I’ll definitely be making these…but I’ll probably have to sub out the peanut flour hahah
Omg, hahaha! I’ve been addicted since just before Trader Joe’s discontinued it (when I freaked out and had a friend buy me like FIVE!). Thankfully I found it online because even though I don’t eat it every day, I can’t even IMAGINE not having any in the house for when that peanut flour craving strikes!
I’m curious about your little cracker creation…might have to try that out! 🙂
So peanut butter, chocolate and banana is pretty much the holy trifecta of delicious flavours. I’ll definitely have to give these a shot!
I tend to follow the “oops too wet, oops to dry” recipe when making granola bars too… as a result I usually end up rolling it together and making balls 😉
These sound right up my alley though, maybe if I can follow the recipe I’ll end up with bars instead of balls!
Well hey, nobody said there was anything wrong with balls…especially lots of them…that you can put in your mouth! Sorry…couldn’t resist! 😉
Hollllllllllllllllly yum. These look so good! I have a similar bar I’ve been making – but now you’ve convinced me I need to add chocolate chips! Yum!
My favourite homemade snacks? Raw bites are a current winner – but we always have healthy homemade muffins and treats stashed in the freezer. Ooh and healthier rice crispy treats are always a winner.
I swear lady, one of these nights, I’m going to sneak into your house and raid your freezer! Muahaha!
These look fantastic! I LOVE the combo of banana, chocolate, and nut/seed/soy butter!
My favourite homemade snacks are definitely energy bars/balls – lately I’ve been making a batch every week.
I think I’ll be jumping on that train with you soon, girlie! I’ve got a few ideas in my head, but I really want to try to recreate a chia bar that I’ve been loving lately. Time to break out the new food processor again! 😀
Your co-workers are awesome!
I still think this sounds great as granola, but maybe looks even better as bars. How cool that they taste great with both the oil and applesauce versions.
Favorite homemade snacks… I have no idea. Let’s go with these 🙂
“Favorite homemade snacks… I have no idea. Let’s go with these” <- Best answer EVER! 😉 I know, I was really surprised that the applesauce ones didn't taste dry. I thought for sure they'd fall apart too...then I would've had what I first set out to make...GRANOLA! Haha!
Yes, please! I am banana obsessed right now.
When I saw you post these beauties on Instagram with the caption, “my coworkers get to taste test” I was irrationally jealous of them and thought to myself, ‘WHY DON’T I WORK WITH HEATHER?!” It’s blasphemous how far you live away from me kthx. However! I’m glad you shared this and ever so thankful. I am totes magotes going to make these soon! I tried making granola bars at home before and they just wouldn’t keep their shape. Maybe it was the ingredients I used (I made dark chocolate and cherry) or the fact I didn’t let it be dry enough or something. Either way! I will def. make these soon!! Thanks lady! <3
Haha! And I just want you to know that I can’t help from laughing over the “totes magotes” thing! My sister has been saying that a lot lately and every time I hear it I think of this: http://i.imgur.com/4hSczvR.png
Ohh, dark chocolate and cherry! I’ve been really lucky with most of my granola bar creations, but I’m really wanting to try making one that is super crunchy…like my favorite Cascadian Farms almond butter bars! That’s actually how I got started a couple of years ago…and I STILL haven’t mastered the crunch! *sigh*
momma needs those!! I seriously need to make some bars… grab and go is the name of the game right now!
Oh, I bet! I’m sure you have your hands FULL with the little one! Seriously girl, I’m SO happy for you and Luvy!! Congratulations again! *hugs*
Yeah, I’m STILL a little upset with you for holding that Canadian only giveaway last year after torturing me with those drool-worthy pics! For that, I must get the new Quest bar BEFORE you and then taunt you with it! 😉
What are your measurements for the mini chocolate chips? I don’t see it in the list of ingredients but they are clearly in the bar:0)
It’s at the bottom of the recipe, right above the banana chips…2 tablespoons! 🙂
Mmmm they look good! Unfortunately most of my homemade snacks are not homemade- they come from a box! But I did make peanut butter no bake energy bites once! http://meggorun.blogspot.com/2013/06/peanut-butter-no-bake-energy-bites.html
Ha! That’s actually my next mission…to use my new food processor to come up with some quick no-bake snacks! I just found these chia bars at the store the other day that I’m CONVINCED I can recreate! *fingers crossed* 🙂
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These make my snackin’ self verrrrry happy.
Oh my goodness. These sound delicious! I was like drooling when looking at these pictures.. 😀
Could you please send me a batch? 🙂
Those look delicious! Since I read your photo tips post first it was interesting really looking at the composition of these photos too, they look awesome.
My favourite homemade snack is usually banana bread or carrot cake mini muffins but lately I’ve been sticking to greek yoghurt for my snacks since following a new plan from Tara at Sweat Like a Pig.
Aww, thanks girlie! I like doing the baked-goods thing too…and since I’ve cleaned out my stash of kabocha donuts, I think it’s about time I whipped up a batch of something else! Hmmm, what to make, what to make! 😉
Pancake Queen. Breakfast Queen. Bar Queen. Sandwich Queen.
Is there such thing as a Whore Queen? Seriously. So many damn crowns 😉
The recipe combination of protein, carbs and fats sounds like my ideal bar- I need a combination of all 3 to be satisfied for more than 45 minutes too!
I think that would be a madam! Bahaha! I’m taking over the worrrrrrrrld! 😉
Very, very nice my friend. I love that you made these fabulous bars out of batch of granola. I’ll say it, “you are one smart cookie…er, I mean bar.” The flavor profile in these is wonderful. I’m a big fan of peanut butter, chocolate and banana. I think my boy Elvis was onto something there.
Wow looks so delicious!! I love your blog as I just came across it for the first time!
xoxo Sarah Grace, Fresh Fit N Healthy.
Thank you so much, Sarah! The bars are great! I’m actually still working on a stash from the freezer! Ha! Thanks so much for stopping by. I LOVE hearing from new readers! 🙂
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