When you are staring at the vending machine thinking about grabbing an afternoon snack to cure your munchies, you may be thinking that a granola bar is the smartest choice. Not necessarily… Although granola bars seem healthy, they can be packed with a ton of sugar and have an shockingly long ingredient list. On a positive note, granola and/or granola bars are incredibly easy to make at home and can be lightened up to better suit your health goals!
The theme for this month’s Recipe Redux was to share a healthy bar or snack you often include in your lunch. I love granola so I decided to whip up these yummy granola clusters. I typically include nuts and cranberries, but I was feeling like I needed to try something a little different. I found this delicious mix of tropical dried fruits at the store that was just perfect for this recipe! The secret to a perfect snack is to make sure you include a good balance of fat, protein, and whole grains. These granola clusters do just that! Nuts and quinoa add satisfying crunch and protein, while almond butter provides healthy fat.
- 1½ cups oats
- ½ cup quinoa, rinsed well
- ⅔ cup almond butter
- ⅓ cup coconut oil
- ¼ cup honey
- 4 teaspoons chia seeds
- ½ cup chopped almonds
- ½ cup chopped walnuts
- ¼ cup sunflower seeds
- ¾ cup dried tropical fruit, chopped
- Dash of sea salt
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Spread oats and quinoa into a single layer on a cookie sheet. Bake for ~20 minutes or until aromatic and lightly toasted. Set aside.
- Heat almond butter, coconut oil, and honey over medium-high heat in a small saucepan. Stir and cook until melted into a creamy sauce.
- Combine chia seeds, walnuts, sunflower seeds, oat/quinoa mix, salt, and fruit in a large mixing bowl. Pour almond butter sauce over top and stir well to combine.
- Spread oat mixture into a 9x11" baking pan lined with wax paper. No need to press evenly into the pan - it's best to leave some large pieces. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until lightly browned.
- Set aside to cool, then transfer to the refrigerator until completely set. Once completely cool, break into 1-1½" inch chunks and enjoy!
- Store in the fridge in an airtight container.