Weekend Food Prep–Chewy Raisin Walnut Granola Bars

I’m thrilled with these granola bars! I’ve been experimenting for years to make bars that stick together without being excessively crunchy and crumbly, have a reasonable nutrition profile that I can work into my balanced meals and stay fresh and tempting for at least a week. And here they are–voila!

Summer means travel, road trips and hiking for me, and I’m always looking for ways to make packing some essentials easier. (Here’s a post specifically about packing food for road trips.) I never travel without coffee and a way to make it myself–I am a Portlander, after all! Bad, watery, flavorless coffee isn’t worth it to me. So, coffee grounds, a pour-over or French press, and soy milk or another kind of creamer are essentials. I also prefer to eat my breakfast in a hotel room rather than talking to other people in the morning before I’ve eaten. Oatmeal is a go-to option, but it can be nice to have something a bit more portable. To that end, I created these granola bars. Each bar has about a serving of carbs, healthy fats, and fruit and a little bonus protein from the eggs and buckwheat, so I can easily make it a balanced meal with the addition of eggs, Greek yogurt or another protein source.

Chewy Raisin Walnut Granola Bars

one. Preheat oven to 375oF.

two. Prepare an 8×8 inch baking pan by draping it with foil to cover the sides and bottom and with handles on either end. Lightly grease the foil.

three. In a mixing bowl, combine:
3 cups flaked old-fashioned or quick oats
3/4 cup buckwheat groats (or additional oats)
1 tsp cinnamon

four. In a food processor, grind until fine but not oily:
1 cup walnut pieces

five. Add the walnuts to the oat mixture. Without cleaning the bowl of the food processor, combine and chop together:
1 packed cup raisins
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 tsp salt

six. Add to the food processor and process until a smooth paste forms:
1/4 cup peanut butter, warmed until soft and runny
1/2 cup liquid egg whites

seven. Pour the raisin mixture over the oat mixture and stir until thoroughly combined. Pour everything into the prepared pan and press down firmly with the back of a measuring cup to make the bars solid.

eight. Bake until fragrant, browning around the edges and beginning to firm up in the middle, about 40 minutes. Cool completely in the pan. Lift out using the foil, gently peel it off, and cut into bars.

Yields 8 servings for meals or more as snacks.

Photo description: A glass baking dish with foil draped over two sides. Inside is baked granola bars. They are lightly browned around the edges.
Image description: Granola bars cut into four pieces on a cutting board. There is a large chef’s knife in the background.

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