Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Granola Energy Bars

I was eager to try these granola bars because I've tried two other recipes in the past and neither was successful.  Dorie never disappoints!

As I do a lot of baking and have made my own granola for years, I had all of the ingredients on my shelves -- save one:  rice syrup.  Frankly, I had never heard of rice syrup.  But living in Rochester, NY, the home of Wegmans grocery stores, it was easy to find.

I assembled all the ingredients and then started. The first big problem was that I couldn't open the jar of rice syrup!  It was brand new, but sticky.  I tried all my jar opening tricks:  whacking the lid to break the seal, prying up an edge of the lid, using a round rubber grippy thing, and finally putting a rubber band around the lid and then using the grippy thing.  Success!

Ironic TAMPER SEAL label.  No one could easily get into this jar!

I mixed everything up, no problem.  I loved Dorie's encouragement to try different things and so I decided to use 1/2 cup dried cherries and 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips.

The technique in making these is to heat up the rice syrup with 2 Tbsp. butter, then pour it over the toasted granola mixture and mix it all up before putting it in a pan.  I saved the chocolate chips for last, but it was still too warm for them and they melted away as I stirred them in!

They aren't overdone.  The mini chips melted and made everything chocolate-y.

The technique that Dorie used to press the mixture down into the pan right after they came out of the oven was brilliant!  My other attempts at making granola bars have always resulted in a falling-apart mess.  These are winners because they hold together and taste good. 

Ready to be taken to lunch.

I took these to a lunch with my teacher friends.  When these women get together, there is always an abundance of food.  My contribution was perfect--they could take one home to eat at another time!


  1. I would have loved the chocolate coating on my granola bars. There are so many ways to go with this one. I'm sure all your teacher friends appreciated them.

  2. Lucky friends! These were well received here. Will be making more! When I can't get the honey jar open, I run the lid under warm water. That usually works for me.

  3. Melty chocolate is the best kind! Your gift bags are so pretty and I'm sure they were appreciated, after all, who could resist the delicious combination of chocolate and cherry.

    1. I certainly can't resist chocolate! Or caramel, for that matter. Next time I make these, I think I'll try a drizzle of chocolate on top instead of mixing in chocolate chips.

  4. Oh, what cute little packages you made with your bars, gives me lots of ideas for the future, thank you! It's been fun reading what everyone put in their bars this week...your combination sounds like it would be a real winner!

  5. That basket is adorable! What a nice treat after all the holiday heaviness.

  6. I had the exact same issue with my bottle of rice syrup -- same brand even! And then the same issue with my chocolate chips. I love how you packaged them all individually -- looks so nice!

  7. I had the same issue with getting the jar of rice syrup open. Took some prying but good thing I got it, I was home alone and half way through the bar-making.
    The picture with you and Dorie is so cute and awesome!
    I HAD to have chocolate in mine, but knew it would melt, so I baked the bars and dipped them in melted chocolate. Mmm!

  8. I had the same messy problem where the bars would not bind together when I tried other recipe, but Dorie's recipe work out great! I have not tried brown rice syrup, have not even heard of it before this! Would have to keep a look out for it.
    A lovely treat for your fellow teacher friends!

  9. I read on another blog that the rice syrup helps bind everything together. I used maple syrup and mine didn't bind quite as well so I believe it! Yours look great!

  10. We are two peas in a pod! I too chose to put chocolate chips and cherries in my bars. And I have used those jar opening methods before, the rubber band never fails ( I learned that from my Mother in-law).
    And your presentation in the basket is beautiful, I am sure everyone loved them.

  11. Very lucky friends! These were quite delicious! Love the addition of chocolate, and I love your basket of goodies!
    Did you try running the jar lid under very hot water…when dealing with very sticky, syrupy things, I find that works great!