Granola Bars

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I started to make my own granola bars when I was in Denver, CO.  One of my classes for my Baking degree was cake decorating.  This was not my interest and I found that I did not have high patients for it.  So my professor would always have me make a snack for the class instead of doing skills.

We found many different recipes and change them to our liking.  She would have me make anything from cookies to granola bars to a lunch dish.  This was the most popular one that would get made.

I still make my own granola bars today, as they are better for me.  When you make your own, you can add what you want to go in them.  This also helps me stay away from processed snacks.

There are many different variations that someone can do with these.  If you want something different then this recipe, try changing out the type of nuts or the fruit.  You can also add chocolate or peanut butter.  Give them a try and see what you come up with.

Ingredients:

2 cups old fashioned oats (make sure you do not get the quick oats)

3/4 cup wheat germ

1 cup peanuts

3/4 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup honey

4 tablespoons butter

2 teaspoons vanilla

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 oz dried fruit ( I used cranberries)

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Prepare a 9 x 13 baking dish with waxed paper.

2. Toast the oats and wheat germ at 400 degrees for 10 minutes. (make sure you give them a stir half way through)

3. Toss them with the peanuts and set aside.

4. Simmer the brown sugar, honey, butter and salt.  Stir constantly until smooth and well blended.

5. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla.  Add this to the oat mixture and mix. Once mixed, add the fruit.

6. Press into prepared baking dish and allow to cool.

7. Once cool, cut and wrap the granola bars.

Leave me a comment and let me know what you would add or remove from these!

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