Hello. My name is Kristyn and I have a problem.
I'm addicted to the Chocolate Chip Chewy Coated Granola Bars from Trader Joes.
|These ones. Right here.|
They have become a complete obsession.
It's disturbing how quickly a box of these puppies can disappear. For real.
And it's not like I don't go to TJ's on a regular basis, because I do. I go a lot. But it's not enough -- I need granola bars, stat!
So in the time it would have taken me to drive to TJ's and back, I can have an entire pan of these ready at a fraction of the cost. And the biggest bonus is that I can pack in as much chocolate as I want. Or I can add pretzels or raisins or nuts or whatever my heart desires.
They have it all: chewy, wholesome, toothsome, and, most importantly, extra chocolatey.
Quick Chocolatey Granola Bars
adapted from Lauren's Latest and Rachael Ray Magazine
1/2 c. coconut oil (butter can be substituted)
1/2 c. honey or corn syrup
2/3 c. brown sugar
pinch of salt
1 tsp. vanilla
1 c. crispy rice cereal
3 c. quick oats (you can use regular rolled oats if you run them through the food processor or blender, otherwise your bars may not hold together very well)
2 c. mini chocolate chips, divided
In a large saucepan, combine coconut oil, honey, brown sugar, and salt. Melt together over medium heat, cooking and stirring until consistency is smooth and sugar is no longer grainy.
While that's cooking, combine crispy rice and oats in a large mixing bowl. Remove brown sugar mixture from heat and stir in vanilla. Pour over oats and cereal, and stir to coat. Once well combined, gently stir in 2/3 of the chocolate chips. Carefully press this mixture into a 9x13" pan lined with parchment paper. Sprinkle remaining chocolate chips over top and press down gently. Let cool completely before cutting into bars.
Certainly, you can cut them however you like, but I cut mine into 16 equal by cutting down the middle lengthwise, then cutting down the middle crosswise. Then cut those halves in half, and those halves in half, giving you two rows of bars about 1.5x5" Did that make any sense?
I highly recommend getting a bench scraper for this application. Nothing cuts bars more cleanly or easily.