Homemade Granola Bars Recipe

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This homemade granola bars recipe makes it easy for you to save making your own granola bars! Your family will love them and you’ll save on your food bill!

Homemade Granola Bars Recipe

Homemade Granola Bars

3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
2 Tbsp. honey or corn syrup
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 egg
1 cup flour
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups  quick cooking oatmeal
1 1/4 cups crispy rice cereal, or crushed corn flakes or any “grain” type cereal or crushed graham crackers
1/2 cup wheat germ (optional)
1 cup chocolate chips*

In a large bowl, cream sugars and butter until fluffy. Add honey, vanilla and egg. Mix well. Blend in flour, cinnamon, baking soda and salt. Stir in remaining ingredients. Press firmly into the bottom of a greased 9×13 pan. Bake at 350° for 20-25 minutes. To microwave: Press ingredients into a microwave safe dish. Microwave on medium power for 7-9 minutes. Rotate dish every three minutes. Bars will firm as they stand. Cool and cut into bars. Save the crumbs for yogurt or ice cream topping. Makes 24 bars.

*The following may be used in addition to or to replace chocolate chips 1 cup coconut 1/2 cup creamy or chunky peanut butter 1/2 cup nuts 1/2-1 cup raisins, dried apples, apricots 1/2 cup fruit preserves

This homemade granola bars recipe is from our Dining on a Dime Cookbook.

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  1. Melinda says

    Homemade Granola Bars
    We made these today with white chocolate chips and locally grown honey, WOW! They are very filling and the kids love them! So much healthier and cheaper than store bought. Thanks for posting the recipe…. Yummy! I love your newsletter and website.
    Melinda,, mother of three!

  2. Kelly says

    It is very hard to find a granola bar recipe – and I have a child who’s allergic to peanuts, so she can’t eat any commercially made granola bars. Thanks for the recipe, as well as the whole website!!

  3. moneca says

    These granola bars look delicious but they seem to be more of a cookie than a health bar with all of the sugar in it. Have you tried it with less sugar? Thanks.

    • says

      Yes, granola bars have never been healthy. If you look at the packaged ones in the stores they have just as many calories and sugar, if not more, than cookies.

      I have used some less sugar myself. You could probably leave out up to half and have it still taste somewhat decent although I haven’t tried it with that much left out.

  4. says

    For Jenny, and anyone that wants less sugar:

    * 4 cups oatmeal
    * 2 cups flour
    * 1 cup coconut (omit if allergic to tree nuts, can add more oatmeal)
    * 1/4 c. sugar
    * 2 tsp. baking soda
    * 1/2 tsp. salt
    * 3/4 c. vegetable oil
    * 3/4 c. honey (OR 1/2 c. honey & 1/4 c. light corn syrup)
    * raisins, chocolate chips, sunflower seeds, dried fruits, nuts….whatever you’d like to add

    Mix dry ingredients well. Add oil and honey. Mix well. Get your fingers in there and mix it until all is blended and slightly sticky. Add raisins or whatever you like. Press firmly into greased jelly roll pan (12 x 15 or close to that). Bake 15 to 20 minutes at 350°. They will look puffy and soft when you take them out. Do not let them turn brown or they will be very hard. Cut into squares/rectangles while still warm.

    These are not overly sweet.

    • says

      One thing to be aware of and that is honey and sugar both have calories. Often people forget this thinking they are getting something with less calories. This is why so many people who are trying to get healthy by losing weight are having problems and getting frustrated. They don’t know that honey has 64 calories per Tbsp. compared to sugar which has only 45 calories per Tbsp. and honey is 1320 per cup compared to sugar which has 774 per cup.

      This is one reason why so many children are becoming obese. Their parents are pouring the honey down them thinking they are giving them something healthy when the reality is they are giving them almost double the calories. Honey is fine just be aware of how many calories you are getting.

      Recently I saw a thing which said 75% or more of people who are eating healthy and organic think that organic foods have fewer or no calories. A banana has as many calories whether it is organic or not and if you say but I am losing weight it probably is only because you are controlling the amount you are eating more then anything.

      • maria says

        It is true that honey has more caloriesa per volume than sugar. However it is sweeter to the taste than sugar, so I certainly use less than when I use sugar, so I think it amounts to the same calories in the end. I prefer to sweeten my kids morning hot chocolate with a teaspoon, or a half per cup of milk and 1 to two teaspoons of cocoa powder. I believe that thehoney contains something that either booststhe immune system, and it is in fact a bit antibacterial. So I think a little bit of honey each day is good for my kids. My mom used to say that honey wayne cheapest nd best medicine.Our whole family were always having bad colds, I remember those sore .throats. She started feeding all of us a spoon of honey for breakfast, every day. And we rarely had colds. she reminded me of this when my youngest had been through kindergarten year one. Always on sickleave tending to my poor little one. Then enter the honey, and all of us got better health. But we only have that spoon in the morning.It is sweet, so excess is NOT healthy, just as you wrote. :-) and no honey to really young ones, only over two years I think it is in sweden, due to a microorganism that could be harmful to babies, but not to the rest of us.

      • Michelle says

        Another reason why children are becoming obese is that they are not participating in outdoor activities.. Most kids today are glued to their Iphones, Tablets, and Xbox.. When I was a kid, I was outside from the time I came home until the streetlights came on.. We ate cookies, cupcakes, and Twinkies.. None of my friends became obese.. Back in school,I think there was only one overweight kid in each of my classes..

        • says

          I think you are right. Everyone is so focused on and obsessed with what I call extreme healthy eating, which I am not sure is really even the problem, that they are over looking many many other factors that are causing kids to be obese.Like you said we didn’t eat near as healthy as what people do now years ago and neither did my parents and yet my mom, dad, brother, friends didn’t have a weight problem.

        • says

          That is exactly right I grew up in the 50’s & 60″s, & yes we ate Twinkies,
          Cookies, Candy Bars, Chips, & we were outside playing until almost dark!
          At school we had recess & we played all kinds of games, where we would be running, or a ball game. None of our friend were obese, & I can only think of one boy in school that was obese!
          Kids this day & time do not know how to play, all you seem to ever see them with is their Iphones or Tablets! Ulk, boring I am glad I grew up back in the truly good ole days!!!!
          Rita :-)

      • says

        If more mothers would listen to you then their kids would not become obise. Plus they need to stay off all the eat-out-foods and drink all the sodas.
        More proper meals need to be prepared at home.

  5. says

    Hello To All Busy Homemakers,
    I enjoy trying your yummy recipes for a change, if not too sweet. But one, I thought, had too many sweet ingredients, like one of the granola recipes. I am hypoglycemic, and as much I love sweets, I have to limit them most times for my health. I eat more fresh foods, few boxed or canned foods, but still love sweets. We know too much sugar in our system causes health problems. We want to have healthy families; please be more aware of what you feed your families. Love your families more and enjoy your sweets in moderation.
    Please know, it was not my intention to offend anyone.
    You are all great Moms!!
    We all can help each other by sharing our concerns for better health for us and our loved ones. Happy Cooking and Baking to all.
    I have learned so much from reading from Living O. A. Dime; keep sending those great homemaking tips; THANKS to all your readers.
    Bless You All with Good Health!

  6. Mandy P. says

    For those looking to cut out the sugar, I used granulated Splenda and the Splenda brown sugar blend in place of both sugars and it came out just fine. Measure out the granulated Splenda the same as white sugar and you halve the brown sugar blend. So in this recipe it’s 1/2 c granulated Splenda and 1/4 c + 2 tbsp brown sugar blend.

    Splenda and all its variants are a bit pricey, but for the sugar conscious it’s worth the price. As I’ve gotten older I’ve found that eating a lot of refined sugar gives me a massive headache and turns my stomach, so I splurge on the sugar substitutes whenever I can.

    • Christie K. says

      Becareful using Splenda as it causes intestinal upset is actually kills the fora inside the intestine. As I am diabetic have to watch my sugars as well instead use Stevia it is a natural sweetner (it is sweeter so you use less). We used Splenda and all has the run a lot switched to Stevia and now have normal bowel habits. Also artifical sweetner can cause headaches and migraines.

      • elizabeth says

        I am diabetic also, and you are right, splenda is very bad for some of us, my stomach hurt alot when i had it. Also, my son tried the splenda pudding, just one tsp and was on the floor in agony, so i guess our stomachs and heads (headaches), are sensitive. I love stevia, even with the licorice taste. It keeps my sugars normal, also try truvia..i love this website, and all that is in it. Elizabeth

        Oh plz can you help? I can’t have the cereals, or the graham crackers, what do i do, use more oatmeal? ty…Elizabeth

  7. Char says

    Thank you Mandy. I was going to ask if anyone had used Splenda in granola bars. Have to watch the blood sugar levels around here. =)

  8. Char says

    Forgot to ask: do these turn out chewy or crunchy? We like a chewy or slightly crisp bar, not to crunchy.

  9. says

    I tried these and they were really good, this kids liked them better than regular granola bars! They taste almost like cookie bars, except not as overly sweet and they don’t fall apart as easily! Thanks for the recipe!

  10. Cat says

    Long time lurker, first time commenting. I just got done making up a batch of these granola bars. They are awesome. I followed the basic recipe with the chocolate chips and added the peanut butter. I just want to say thanks Tawra and Jill for all the time and money saving ideas you have given me. It’s made my life easier. :)
    Love this site.

    • says

      You are welcome Cat. Glad you liked the granola bars. It is one of our most popular recipes and you can add so many different things to it.

  11. Amy Fullmer says

    For some reason though everyone needs a little sugar, and this idea is to save money over buying in the store. I really appreciate most of all the idea of “saving money” which we all need to focus on in this economy. Here where I live in Utah, they sell granola bars, a family pack for $2.50 for 12. Well, I have bought them for the past years and my children love them. Now, the packaging has recently changed and you would not believe it if I told you how the size of the bar has drastically changed too. Not the price though. No. I had some old to compare to because I found an old hiding place I kept them in or I could not actually have it before my eyes to compare/see. They are almost a half an inch less in width and a whole inch less in length than the old bars made by the same company and selling fot the same price.
    So, Living on a Dime website, thank you for making available options to those who cannot afford to keep spending the same amount at the store and bringing home less and less yield. I am appauled at the rise of inflation but even more appauled at the packaging of everything becoming smaller in size and portions.

  12. Kathy says

    These are absolutely the best granola bars ever. I’ve been making these since my oldest son was 2 years old, he is nearly 13. He asks for them to go in his lunch box. They are the BEST!!! Thanks for sharing a long time ago when you were still “Not Just Beans Anymore.” I’ve followed you since then.

    • says

      Whoa! You have been with us for a long time Kathy. We are so lucky to have some of the sweetest readers who have been with us for years. Thanks for sticking with us for so long. Your son is about as old as Tawra’s daughter. I remember that first year she was born and Mike and I took her out for her first Halloween trick or treating because Tawra had to go to a craft show and try to sell some of our first books. We were so excited at the handful of books we sold. : )

  13. Patricia says

    This is one of my favorite recipes. I have made these for packed lunches for several years and every one in our home loves them. I have left out the honey when I was out and they turned out great too.

  14. Kate says

    I’ve made these several times and taken them into the office. My office mates raved about them. Each time I make them, I try different add ins. Most recently, I included M&Ms. A friend has said her favorite was when I used less sugar and honey, added peanuts and saved the peanut butter for a frosting. I gave them a few minutes to cool after baking and spread peanut butter over them. They were almost like a famous brand name bar.

    Love your recipes. I now keep many of your seasoning mixes with the regular spices on my spice rack.

  15. danielle says

    love reading u letters love these simple recipes i am going to grow some blue berries bushes but i am looking for any granola or any recipes that u can put blue berries in

  16. says

    In the Dining on a Dime cookbook, the recipe calls for 1 1/2 c oatmeal. This recipe says “quick cook oatmeal”. Will Old Fashioned Oatmeal work, or is that why it now says “quick cook” because oats won’t work?
    Thanks, from another long time customer from the “Not Just Beans” era (my book is autographed.) 😉

    • says

      You do need to use the quick cook ones in recipes like this. I’m not sure but I think it has to do with them not cooking properly in the bars. Now I have never tried old fashion and I suppose you could make a half of batch and experiment with the old fashion oats.

  17. Sita Hirano says

    Brand new to the site. Happy to find you all. Can’t wait to try the granola bar recipe. I’ve not been happy with my results with other recipes so far. Just wanted to comment as I have enjoyed very much reading all of your comments.

  18. says

    What a wonderful idea! I’m looking forward to trying these. I’m a person who needs to snack, & it’s hard to know what to snack on sometimes, especially when I’m running errands. I like the idea of using chocolate chips sometimes, raisins sometimes, and so on. Sounds good!


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