Thursday, October 29, 2015

Super Simple Granola Bars with a Touch of Chocolate for Halloween!

Looking for a delicious treat that you can send to school for Halloween, or just everyday with NO NUTS in it? Check out these Halloween-style granola bars that I made up earlier this week.

I first made 3 Ingredient No Bake Peanut Butter Oat Squares, but instead wanted something that: a) included chocolate, and b) could be sent to school to abide by the no-nut policy. So I bought some sunflower butter (I like the taste better than no-nut/soy butter), then decided on my chocolate choices and got to work. I also wanted to add some crunch, so I included a cup of crisped rice cereal.

You can press this into a 9 x 9 inch pan lined with foil or plastic wrap and cut them in logs like granola bars.  But if you press it out a little bit flatter on a plastic wrap-lined cookie sheet or large cutting board, you can cut shapes using cookie cutters! I made these for Halloween, but you can certainly plan ahead and gather some cookie cutters for American Thanksgiving or Christmas.

I included chocolate drizzle on some, organic chocolate chips on others, and for the ghosts, I dipped them entirely in tempered white chocolate and sprinkled shredded coconut on top. I put some out for my daughter's Halloween birthday party, and sent others to school in lunch bags all week long (in clearly marked bags that say 'sunflower butter, not peanut butter!').

I was also excited because this was a great way to use my super delicious Crum Farm & Stables Honey that I brought back from my trip to Missouri, where my friend owns a honey bee farm.

Here is the recipe if you want to make them:

Recipe: Super Simple No Bake, No Nuts and No Flour Granola Bars

You need:
  • 1 cup sunflower butter (I used Nuts To You Nut Butter brand, but also recently discovered a delicious sunflower butter in the bins at Bulk Barn)*
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 2 cups rolled oats (use gluten free oats for a diet-specific treat)
  • 1 cup crisped rice cereal
  • Optional: Chocolate for drizzle -  you need only 1 to 2 ounces or Chocolate for dipping -  for dipping you need 16 ounces (white, dark or milk - whatever you like!)

Other Optional Ingredients:


1. Line a baking sheet or large cutting board with plastic wrap or waxed paper.

2. Melt the peanut butter and honey together until smooth over the stove, or in the microwave.

3. Toss in the oats and crisped rice cereal and stir until combined. If adding chocolate chips, toss them in now.

4. Pour out onto your lined pan.  Spread out with your gloved hands or place a sheet of waxed paper on top of the mix and roll it out with a rolling pin. Spread or roll to 1/4-inch to 1/2-inch thick, depending on the size you want (but be warned, the thinner it is, the harder it will be to handle.  Dipping it in chocolate will firm them and resolve that, but you must be careful while doing so if you don't want them to break while dipping).

5. Using cookie cutters of your choice, cut out various shapes.  Re-roll the left over mix and cut more until you run out of mix. Set aside while you prepare your chocolate.

6. Melt and temper your chocolate for the following...

   To drizzle: pour your tempered chocolate into a snack-sized Ziplock bag, then cut a tiny hole in the corner to drizzle over the granola bars.  It is helpful to place the granola bars on a cooling rack while doing this so that any extra drizzle drops below.

   To dip in chocolate: melt and temper your bowl of chocolate (for tempering instructions, click here).  Then using a large fork, or chocolate dipping fork if you have one, carefully lift up each granola bar and then lower into the bowl of chocolate. Press below surface, then lift and tap the fork several times on the edge of the bowl to let much of it drip off (otherwise you will have large 'tails' of chocolate around your granola bars.  Then carefully place it onto a piece of waxed paper on the counter by first angling it, then edging it off the fork. Immediately sprinkle coconut on top before the chocolate cools and sets.  Let set on counter for an hour, or in the fridge for a half hour.

7. Seal in an airtight container or package individually in treat bags. Consume within a week.

Prefer Peanut Butter?
*If you want to use peanut butter instead of sunflower butter, go right ahead! I tried this recipe with a variety of peanut butters before trying the sunflower butter option. I used organic or natural peanut butters, including Maranatha brand, NATUR (out of Montreal brand, and Skippy Natural with Honey, which added an extra boost of honey.


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