There is no maybe here, you have to make these utterly delicious trail mix bars! Made with peanut butter, chocolate chips, dried cherries and oats, these bars are a scrumptious on-the-go snack. I tend to pop one in the afternoon when I’m craving something sweet, but still mostly healthy.
These trail mix get-in-mah-belly bars are pure homemade lovin’ from the oven! Except well, you don’t use an oven. They’re no-bake, free from preservatives and kid-friendly, which is a serious win in my house. Lillian loves to help me bake and this recipe definitely promotes kiddos in the kitchen. Lots of yummy dry ingredients to measure, nibble on and pour. Lilly does a really great job at pouring; I think I’ll keep her :).
I also love how you can get creative with this recipe and easily substitute ingredients (especially ingredients you have a ton of in your house; remember my summer challenge?). Not into sunflower seeds or dried cherries? Try substituting dried cranberries and walnuts. Or dried apple rings (ground up small in a food processor) and peanuts and maybe throw a little bacon in there. I could go on for hours. So many trail mix bars!! Muahahaha!!
1 cup honey
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 T granulated sugar
1/3 cup peanut butter
1 1/2 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup oat bran
1 T flax seed
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
3/4 cup dried cherries, chopped (can also use cranberries or currants)
Combine the honey, vanilla, sugar and peanut butter (and pinch of salt if desired) in a medium sized saucepan. Bring to a boil on stove top then reduce heat to simmer; cook honey mixture for about four minutes, stirring occasionally.
In a large bowl, combine the remaining dry ingredients except for chocolate chips. Remove the honey mixture from the heat and carefully pour the boiling mixture over the oat mixture. Combine well. Allow mixture to cool, approximately 2-5 minutes. Then, add the dark chocolate chips and fold together.
Press mixture into a greased nine inch pan and pat down with wet hands. Chill in fridge for an hour, or until firm before cutting into bars (makes approximately 16). Wrap individually and store chilled until ready to be eaten.