Recipe // Glow Granola Bars

I have been loving this recipe from the Oh She Glows cook book. I've been making it almost weekly, it's so easy. I've been on a bit of a health kick, trying to find more natural substitutes for store bought snacks and meals. I modified the original recipe a little bit this week and they turned out SO yummy, so I thought I would share the recipe with you!

Ingredients:
- 1½ cups quick oats
- 1¼ cups Shreddies, mashed up.
- ¼ cup hemp seeds
- ¼ cup sunflower seeds
- ¼ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
- 2 tbsp sesame seeds
- 2 tbsp chia seeds
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- ¼ tsp fine-grain sea salt
- ½ cup plus 1 tbsp brown rice syrup
- ¼ cup roasted peanut butter or almond butter
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- ¼ cup mini non-dairy chocolate chips (such as Enjoy Life brand) (optional)

Directions:
1. Line a 9-inch (2.5-L) square cake pan with two pieces of parchment paper (one going each way).

2. In a large bowl, combine the oats, shreddies, hemp seeds, sunflower seeds, coconut, sesame seeds, chia seeds, cinnamon, and salt and mix.

3. In a small saucepan, stir together the brown rice syrup and peanut butter until well combined. Cook over medium to heat until the mixture softens and bubbles slightly, then remove the pan from the heat and stir in the vanilla.

4. Pour the peanut butter mixture over the oat mixture, using a spatula to scrape every last bit out of the pan. Stir well with a large metal spoon until all of the oats and cereal are coated in the wet mixture. (The resulting mixture will be very thick and difficult to stir. If you get tired, just picture me making five hundred of these bars in a row, and you’ll feel better!) If using the chocolate chips, allow the mixture to cool slightly before folding in the chips. This will prevent them from melting.

5. Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan, spreading it out into an even layer. Lightly wet your hands and press down on the mixture to even it out. Use a pastry roller to compact the mixture firmly and evenly. This helps the bars hold together better. Press down on the edges with your fingers to even out.

6. Place the pan in the freezer, uncovered, and chill for 10 minutes, or until firm.

7. Lift the oat square out of the pan, using the parchment paper as handles, and place it on a cutting board. With a pizza roller (or a serrated knife), slice the square into 6 rows and then slice them in half to make 12 bars total.

8. Wrap the bars individually in plastic wrap or foil and store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. Alternatively, you can store them in the freezer for up to 1 month.

Original recipe from Oh She Glows.