Tart Cherry No-Bake Granola Bars
Many store bought granola bars contain a lot of unhealthy ingredients, these soft and chewy tart cherry granola bars are filled with Michigan grown tart cherries, almonds and other wholesome ingredients!
Makes 16 bars
- 1 cup sliced almonds
- 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
- 2/3 cup dried Montmorency tart cherries
- 1 3/4 cups quick oats
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 cup creamy almond butter
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup dark chocolate, coarsely chopped from a dark chocolate bar
- PREP: Line a 9×9-inch pan with parchment paper. Leave an overhang for easy removal of bars.
- DRY INGREDIENTS: Add the sliced almonds and pepitas to a food processor. Pulse for about 7-10 seconds (on chop setting), until the nuts are all broken up. Add to a large bowl. With a sharp knife, coarsely chop the dried Montmorency tart cherries (I found they don’t chop well in the food processor). Add to the bowl with the nuts. Add in the quick oats and salt. Stir together.
- WET INGREDIENTS: In another bowl, add the creamy almond butter and honey. Microwave for 30 seconds. Remove and pour in the vanilla extract. Stir for about 30 seconds to one minute or until well blended.
- COMBINE: Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Use hand mixers (or your hands) to mix/knead the mixture together until combined. This takes a little effort, but it will come together! Once the ingredients are well combined, pour into the prepared pan and then firmly press down with your hands. Use the bottom of a 1 cup measuring cup to really press and pack the mixture together in one even layer. Press firmly here to avoid crumbling later!
- CHOCOLATE: Coarsely chop up a dark chocolate bar and add to a small microwave safe bowl. Microwave for 15 seconds, stir for 15 seconds, and if needed return to the microwave for another 15 seconds and stir for another 15 seconds until smooth and melted. Using a spatula, transfer the melted chocolate to a small bag and snip off the top (or use a pastry bag fitted with a #3 tip). Drizzle chocolate all over the bars.
- FIRMING UP: Refrigerate the pan for 30 minutes to an hour or until the chocolate is hardened and the bars are firm. When you’re ready to slice, lift the bars out of the pan by using the overhang from the parchment paper. Use a sharp knife to cut into 16 bars (7 vertical cuts and 1 horizontal cut down the middle).
Recipe courtesy of Recipe courtesy of https://www.chelseasmessyapron.com/.
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