Homemade “Fit” Granola Bars

Here's the Dish

I created these granola bars after many (and I do mean many) tries at creating a granola bar that was low in calories, sugar, yet delicious and satisfying. This is not an easy thing to do considering traditional ‘granola’ is packed with calories and sugar! I can honestly say that I was very excited when these bars came out of the oven and they had a very similar taste to the ‘Quaker Chewy’ granola bars that I love! I also let some of them sit in the oven for a while after I turned the oven off for a more ‘crunchy’ granola bar, and they tasted much like the ‘Nature Valley Oats and Honey’ granola bars!

So you may be wondering, well if they taste just as wonderful as these ‘pre-made’ granola bars, why would I go through the hassle to make my own!?! Well…I specifically created these bars with a high fiber/whole grain cereal and peanut butter, so these bars truly do keep you full for hours! They are also much lower in sugar/calories than any pre-made granola bar out there, and they’re a pretty good size bar for only 101 calories! Oh and did I mention they have chocolate in them?  Now tell me what could be better than that!?!

Method

The estimated total time to make this recipe is 40 Minutes.

1

Start by choosing any three cereals with different textures, (here are some examples of some great high-grain/low calorie cereals that you could use for this recipe!)

fit-granola-1
2

Measure out 1 cup of each cereal, totaling 3 cups of cereal. Pour cereal int a medium sized bowl. I chose Rice Krispies™ for a light and crispy texture, Special K™ flakes for added protein and whole grain carbohydrates, and Fiber One™ for fiber of course!

3

I also added 1 cup of Quaker Oats for texture, taste, and whole grain goodness!

4

Place the cereal and oats in a large ziplock bag and lightly crush until the cereal is slightly ground.

fit-granola-2
5

Pour cereal back into the bowl, and add the syrup, the peanut butter, and sweetener.

6

Stir until everything is just mixed together.

7

Add the chocolate chips and the coconut! (Of course you could leave this out or replace it with something else, like dried fruit!)

8

Mix everything together until everything is well mixed. I even ended up using my hands to mix everything up really well!

9

Spray a 9×13 baking pan with non-stick cooking spray and pour granola mixture in pan. Press granola mixture until you reach a desired thickness. I personally wanted ‘bigger’ bars, so I spread my mixture out pretty thin. *Note: It’s OK of the bars don’t spread out over the whole pan!

fit-granola-3
10

Preheat oven to 375, and bake for 25 minutes. Remove from oven and cut into 12 even bars with a spatula. Place back into the oven for another 15 minutes for ‘chewy’ granola bars, or turn off oven and let bars sit in the oven while it cools down, (for up to an hour) for a more ‘crunchy’ granola bar!

11

Remove from oven and enjoy!

Ingredients

1 cup Rice Cereal
1 cupBran/flake cereal
1 cupFiber One™ cereal
1 cupOats
3/4 cup Sugar free maple syrup (1/2 cup honey would work as well)
1/4 cup Peanut butter, melted in microwave for 30 seconds (or 1/4 cup peanut flour mixed with 2 tbs water)
1/4 cupShredded coconut
2 tbs Chocolate chips (I used mini chocolate chips)
1/4 cupBaking stevia OR 1/2 cup sweetener of choice that measures like sugar 1
PinchSalt
PinchCinnamon
Optional Variations: white chocolate chips, dried fruit, sliced almonds, cocoa powder, raisins

1 I used NuNaturals More Fiber Stevia Baking Blend. If using packets of stevia, I recommend using about 6-8, or adjust according to taste.

Nutrition Breakdown

12 Servings
113 Calories Per Serving
4 g Fat
18 g Carbohydrates
4 g Fiber
1 g Sugar
3 g Protein
3 WWP+*

*Weight Watchers Points per serving

65 Comments

Jenni said:

Katie,
Love your recipes, but I am allergic to sugar alternatives – they give me migraines (severe). If I need to substitute sugar, is it an equal amount?

March 14th, 2011 — 6:03pm  |  Reply

Renae Bradley said:

I didn’t even use sugar with mine. The honey and bit of chocolate made them sweet enough (at least for my taste).

May 30th, 2012 — 11:29pm  | 

Liz @ IHeartVegetables said:

This is BRILLIANT!!! I’ve been trying for months to figure it a recipe that makes a low calorie granola bar. This looks delicious!

March 14th, 2011 — 6:31pm  |  Reply

lisa said:

mmm!! these look delicious! and a good way to use up all the cereal in my house :P

March 14th, 2011 — 7:21pm  |  Reply

Mary said:

I can’t wait to try these they look delicious! :)

March 15th, 2011 — 11:33pm  |  Reply

Tami@nutmegnotebook said:

These look really good and healthy too! Love your dishes as well.

March 17th, 2011 — 7:48am  |  Reply

Christine Barrett said:

I can’t WAIT to make these!!!!

March 17th, 2011 — 12:34pm  |  Reply

Catherine C. said:

I can not wait to try these! I completely agree with you that standard granola bars are filled with sugar and other unnecessary things. This is by far the most excited I have been about a granola recipe ever! :)

March 17th, 2011 — 1:26pm  |  Reply

Donna Courte said:

These look and sound so yummy…. I’m running to the store tomorrow to get all the ingredients to make!!!

March 17th, 2011 — 8:54pm  |  Reply

Elizabeth said:

These just got a thumbs up from my 3 year old!

March 18th, 2011 — 9:55am  |  Reply

Amy at TheSceneFromMe said:

These look really yummy Katie! I have never made my own granola, but I sure want to try :)

March 19th, 2011 — 2:58pm  |  Reply

Ana Maria said:

these are so great! I love granola and yogurt, but homemade granola bars and yogurt……..i can’t wait!

March 19th, 2011 — 4:26pm  |  Reply

Jordyn said:

Yum! I’m definitely going to try these!

March 20th, 2011 — 8:44am  |  Reply

Snacker Chris said:

I have a batch in the cooling down in the oven stage right now. When I saw this I had to try it. Using 1/2 cocoa oats, kashi puffs, kashi go lean and some generic bran. They look, smell and taste awesome!

March 24th, 2011 — 6:37am  |  Reply

Michelle said:

I just made these using PB2 instead of peanut butter and using SF mii chocolate chips; they are delish! I lowered the coconut to two TB also and they come out to be 89 calories each! Perfect! Thanks again Katie, you are so awesome!

March 29th, 2011 — 9:25am  |  Reply

Colleen said:

Did you mix the PB2 with water or just add the powder?? I just got some and haven’t baked with it yet.

December 4th, 2012 — 10:02am  | 

Dashing Dish said:

mix with water until pb consistency forms

December 4th, 2012 — 10:14am  | 

Jackie said:

Thanks so much for the recipe, I’ve been looking to make a healthier version of granola bars and they came out amazing!! Will definitely be making these a lot in my house :)

March 29th, 2011 — 8:33pm  |  Reply

Elizabeth said:

I made these with gluten free subs and they are a hit!! One of my favs

March 31st, 2011 — 6:14pm  |  Reply

Holley Sedlak said:

I’m SOOOOOOOOOOOO going to make these!!!!!!!!!!! :) Thanks Katie!!!

April 12th, 2011 — 7:20pm  |  Reply

Catherine C. said:

I’m making these RIGHT NOWWW :) so excited! even the “dough” tastes good already!

April 16th, 2011 — 12:47pm  |  Reply

Carrie said:

I made these tonight and replaced the coconut with flax seeds. The kids LOVED them–even my incredibly picker eater. Thanks so much for sharing this recipe.

May 10th, 2011 — 4:31pm  |  Reply

Maggie said:

I made these a few weeks ago and they didn’t stick around my apartment for long! I can’t wait to try them again and switch up some of the cereal types I used… I recommended this recipe to some of my granola loving friends!

May 24th, 2011 — 10:38am  |  Reply

Annie said:

How long do they stay good? How do you store them? I’m looking forward to making my first batch! Thanks :)

July 11th, 2011 — 4:26pm  |  Reply

hannah said:

Hi Katie!

These look great! I was wondering if you knew how many points one of these bars would be? You are AMAZING!

July 23rd, 2011 — 2:03pm  |  Reply

Sarah Graf said:

Do you have the WW points for this yet?

July 29th, 2011 — 5:30pm  |  Reply

Julie said:

I am going to try these this weekend. I can’t wait!

August 5th, 2011 — 8:09am  |  Reply

Jen said:

Katie,

Thank you so much for coming up with this recipe and for sharing it!!! I had to remove most sugar from my diet in the last year for health reasons. I love hiking and was not able to find any commercial granola bars without a ton of sugar of some type, but I can’t eat splenda or nutrasweet. I can eat Stevia and a little bit of agave nectar, so I can’t wait to try your recipe. I can’t thank you enough! May the Lord continue to bless you with creativity and good health!

SugarFreeJen

August 13th, 2011 — 11:08am  |  Reply

Katie Farrell said:

hi diane, make sure you leave them in the oven a bit longer if they are not yet firmed up…. otherwise they will be like a chewy granola bar! :)

January 15th, 2012 — 12:37pm  |  Reply

Kristy stephens said:

These are awesome! I am just curious though how much fat grams per bar?
Thanks again for sharing recipe! I am making a 2nd batch! Huge hit in our house!!!

January 19th, 2012 — 6:23am  |  Reply

Tina said:

Thank you, thank you!! I love ALL Your receipes..I’ve made at least 5 diff things posted on your webpage..they have ALL come out AMAZING!!!! wow!! thanks soo much!!

February 13th, 2012 — 10:58am  |  Reply

Casey said:

I honestly can NOT stop printing your recipes. Your a pure genius!! I’m a granola fanatic and I hate that I always have to restrain myself so I don’t feel weighed down and take in too much sugar but these are the perfect solution!! :)

February 27th, 2012 — 4:10pm  |  Reply

Kelly said:

We made these last night. They were a hit with my 14 year old son. I used dried cranberries in place of the coconut.

March 7th, 2012 — 7:41am  |  Reply

Cassandra said:

I made these tonight with Stevia In the Raw, and I also substituted a few ingredients with other fruits. I added 3tbsps of rose water for an earthy flavor :) they’re “crisping” right now because I want them “nature valley”-crunchy (haha) I’ll let you know how they taste. I can’t wait to try one tomorrow morning!

March 13th, 2012 — 9:04pm  |  Reply

Emily said:

I made these and followed your recipe exactly (I used 1/2c honey as you recommended) and stevia. I baked them at 375 (as it says to)and I set my timer for 25 min. They were already burning at that time when I checked them and when I cut them into bars they were somewhat falling apart. I went ahead and continued to follow the directions for chewy bars and kept them in the 375 oven for another 15 min and they were burnt to a crisp. I really wanted these to work! What did I do wrong?

April 8th, 2012 — 6:50pm  |  Reply

Chris said:

Mine too!!

Baked as directed, and they burnt.

May 26th, 2012 — 12:31pm  | 

Dashing Dish said:

even if your baking pan was different, that could of done it (dark metal pan vs. light)….just lower your baking temp by 25 degrees next time. :)

May 26th, 2012 — 5:13pm  | 

Kari said:

This happened to me too! I tried again today and towards the end I started to smell burning again. I guess there is a very fine line of when to take them out of the oven!

June 3rd, 2012 — 4:37pm  | 

Dashing Dish said:

hi kari, just try lowering your baking temp, the reason could be your baking pan or oven… also try a glass baking dish if your using metal! :)

June 4th, 2012 — 6:11am  | 

Erin said:

Or the altitude differences where we all live!

August 11th, 2012 — 1:39am  | 

Stephanie said:

I just calculated these with weight watchers points plus. Using the sugar free syrup (not honey) and peanut butter (instead of peanut flour), they are 4 wwpp per serving.

April 18th, 2012 — 4:38pm  |  Reply

Carisa said:

I have been making these for a while now and they are absolutely delicious, especially warm and right out of the oven! I like to use Kashi Go Lean Toasted Berry Crumble in mine, it adds a nice fruity flavor. Thanks for the recipe Katie!

June 18th, 2012 — 9:29am  |  Reply

mary said:

thank you so much for this recipe! my fiance loves granola, and i’m not a huge fan, so i made these for him. well let me tell you… they were delicious! i’m hooked! i plan on making these regularly and experimenting with flavors. we’re doing weight watchers until our wedding next may and these are a perfect filling breakfast or late night snack when i’m crazing something sweet! i changed it up a little and made them nice and thick for a bar that is 6 points, but they are so tasty and filling that they’re worth it.

for those making them i thought i would add a couple comments on how i made them since i think they came out just amazing! i didn’t want to buy 3 different boxes of cereal so i did 1 1/2 cups each of original fiber one and rice krispies. i used 1/2 cup agave as the only sweetener, and i added 1/4 cup sliced almonds. i added some extra coconut on top but it burnt, i plan on doing it again next time but maybe for only the last 5-10minutes of cooking time (probably wouldn’t work at all if you’re making the super crispy kind). thanks again!

July 12th, 2012 — 1:25am  |  Reply

Katelyn said:

This is such a great recipe. I have made several versions of it, excluding sweetener and adding protein powder. The favorites have been dark chocolate cherry almond and apricot vanilla almond. Perfect for breakfast on the go or a sweet tooth!

July 31st, 2012 — 6:47pm  |  Reply

Meg said:

Hi
I just found this recipe and tried it today. It tastes delicious!!
But I did have a question. I lowered my temp to 350 and used a glass
Baking dish. I took them out a few mins early as they were browning
quickly and used the spatula to cut the bars and then put them back in as it says.
I took them out early again because I wanted chewy bars. After they cooled though they were very crumbly and not staying together well and definitely more of a crunchy bar. Why do you think that is? They tastes fantastic but I may have to use them as granola for yougurt though since try crumble when I touch them. Any advice would be great!! Thanks.

October 23rd, 2012 — 4:56pm  |  Reply

Dashing Dish said:

all ovens are a bit different, just put it in for less time :)

October 24th, 2012 — 2:54pm  | 

IRIS RAMIREZ said:

Hi Katie,
Could you add protein powder to increase the protein content?

November 24th, 2012 — 11:29am  |  Reply

Erin said:

Hi!

I love the look of this recipe. I would love to make it for my husband but as he is allergic to all nuts i wonder if you might have an idea for something to replace the peanut butter?

January 3rd, 2013 — 4:22am  |  Reply

Dashing Dish said:

Coconut oil

January 3rd, 2013 — 8:47am  | 

Erin said:

Allergic to coconut oil as well but thankyou for the idea!

January 7th, 2013 — 7:39pm  | 

Jessie said:

We make our own maple syrup, so since no sugar is added is it considered sugar free? We tap the trees and cook down the sap.

January 16th, 2013 — 8:50am  |  Reply

Dashing Dish said:

well..in my opinion yes bc you didnt add white sugar, its a form of natural sugar :)

January 16th, 2013 — 9:07am  | 

jenny said:

I make these regularly… And therefore have tried several alternatives. I.e. ive added protein, quinoa, nuts, almonds, sunflower seeds. Everything ive tried turns out well!

April 23rd, 2013 — 8:43pm  |  Reply

Janet said:

Great recipe! I’m not eliminating sugar (yet) so I used regular maple syrup and a few drops liquid stevia and they were plenty sweet. In fact I think I’ll skip the stevia next round.

One thing though…the oven temp seems really high! Mine were very close to burnt at the end of the 25 mins. Needless to say, I didn’t need to leave them in the oven to make them crunchy. I loved them though! I wanted mine crunchy, so it’s all good. Thank you.

October 23rd, 2013 — 6:33pm  |  Reply

Charmaine said:

Do you have a recommendation for avoiding the use of peanut butter in this recipe? The recipe sounds fantastic but we’re really not nut fans.. Thanks!

April 9th, 2014 — 5:31pm  |  Reply

Katie Farrell said:

Thanks Liz! :)

March 14th, 2011 — 7:08pm  |  Reply

Katie Farrell said:

Sure Jenni.. Can you use stevia? I actually made a batch with NuStevia stevia and used 2 tbs and they were perfect! I would suggest using honey and sugar as alternatives if you can’t use sugar subs! :)

March 14th, 2011 — 7:09pm  |  Reply

Katie Farrell said:

Thanks Mary! :) Let me know how you like them!

March 16th, 2011 — 6:19am  |  Reply

Katie Farrell said:

thanks for the feedback carrie! :) sooo glad to hear your ‘picky eater’ likes them…i always say my hubby is a 2 year old picky eater, so when he taste tests my recipes i know kids will like them! haha

May 11th, 2011 — 5:42am  |  Reply

Katie Farrell said:

awesome! thanks maggie!

May 24th, 2011 — 5:24pm  |  Reply

Katie Farrell said:

they stay good for one week in air tight container!

July 11th, 2011 — 5:22pm  |  Reply

Katie Farrell said:

thanks hannah! :) i will see if the woman who calculates the points for me would be able to do this one!

July 23rd, 2011 — 4:44pm  |  Reply

Katie Farrell said:

thanks Jen!!! :)

August 15th, 2011 — 8:02am  |  Reply

Katie Farrell said:

you made my WEEK tina! :) thank you!

February 13th, 2012 — 3:12pm  |  Reply

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