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Cherry-Almond Granola Bars
Easy Cherry-Almond Granola Bars Erin McDowell

Granola bars--fast, convenient, purse-sized. Just do yourself a favor and don’t read the nutrition info. Lucky for us gals on the go, a healthy version is achingly easy to make at home. Toast up some oats, add a drizzle of honey, a spoonful of almond butter and a handful of your favorite mix-ins, and you’ve got your own granola bars in less than 30 minutes. And they’re good for you too, but that won’t stop us from drizzling a little chocolate on top next time...

Makes 12 bars
Start to Finish: 25 minutes

Ingredients

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

3 cups quick oats

1½ cups almonds, coarsely chopped

1 cup dried cherries

3 tablespoons brown sugar

⅓ cup honey

1½ cups almond butter

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

1. Line a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with parchment paper, leaving an overhang on both sides.

2. Melt the butter in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the oats and toast until fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes.

3. In a large bowl, combine the oats with the remaining ingredients and mix well to combine. (This can be done by hand, but it’s especially quick in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.)

4. Press the oat mixture evenly into the prepared pan. Pop the pan into the refrigerator or freezer to let the mixture set for 5 to 10 minutes. Cut into 12 evenly sized bars and serve. The bars will keep in an airtight container or wrapped in plastic for up to five days.

Finishing Touches

It's the details that count! Try these tips

  • Veganize your bars by replacing the honey with agave or even maple syrup. Use gluten-free oats for a treat minus the wheat.

  • Almond-cherry is just one of the many combos you can try. We also love pistachios and golden raisins, and the not-so-virtuous pairing of salted peanuts and chocolate-covered espresso beans.

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