Thursday, September 18, 2014

Chewy Peanut Butter Apple Granola Bars

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Okay, this is the last apple thing I'm doing for a while. Next week I'm going to break and start throwing pumpkin recipes at you until December, I can just feel it. So all of you who were saying last week, "Oh yeah, we totally agree. We have to wait till October to start the pumpkin frenzy", I'm sorry. You'll just have to deal with it.

But for now, we are doing apples. I was going to make caramel apple granola bars, but my brother started throwing a fit and saying caramel was disgusting and he hates it and I keep ruining all the good treats by adding homemade salted caramel. I don't know what kind of brain injury is causing him to say this, but I finally gave in anyways and decided to go for the peanut butter apple combo instead. Because everyone knows, if you don't have a fresh batch of homemade salted caramel to dip your apple slices in, melted peanut butter is the next best thing.

    • Chewy Peanut Butter Apple Granola Bars
      You can also make these gluten free! Find the gluten free instructions here

    • 1 cup gluten free Rice Krispies
      1 2/3 cups gluten free rolled oats
      1/3 cup gluten free oat flour (you can grind your own in the food processor)
      1 cup sweetened shredded coconut
      1/2 teaspoon salt
      1 teaspoon cinnamon 
      2/3 cup brown sugar
      2/3 cup peanut butter
      1 teaspoon vanilla
      1/2 cup melted butter
      1/3 cup honey
    • Optional add-ins: peanut butter chips, nuts, flax seeds, etc. (I would add about 2/3 cup total of any add-ins if you want any, but you can leave them out altogether)
    • 1 1/3 cups chopped apple, about 1 centimeter cubes (I used 1 large honeycrisp)

    • For drizzling on top (optional):
    • 1/3 cup peanut butter
    • 1 tablespoon butter
    • 2 tablespoons honey
    • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla

    • Preheat the oven to 350º.
      Combine all of the ingredients except for the apples in a large bowl. 
    • Line a 9x13 inch pan with greased parchment paper. Leave some paper hanging over the edge so that the bars will be easier to remove from the pan.
      Press the about half of the mixture into the pan (just enough to cover the bottom) and press firmly in. Sprinkle with the apple bits. Crumble on the remaining mixture and press firmly in (you may want to get your hands a little wet). It's okay if some of the apples are poking through.
      Bake for about 45 minutes at 350ºF.
      Store in the refrigerator. 
    • Combine the drizzle ingredients and melt in the microwave. Allow to cool until thick enough to drizzle over the bars. 

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