There have been a lot of days lately that I’ve been eating breakfast on the run. And by that I mean I eat breakfast on the run every. single. day. I’ve gotten into the bad habit of grabbing just a bagel or waffle to eat in the car, but I’ve been meaning to make something a little more nutritious as an on-the-go snack.
I wanted something with whole grains, protein, and fruit that would be delicious and easy to eat anywhere. And so these bars were born!
Let’s take a quick second to talk about the awesome nutritional benefits of the ingredients in the base of the granola.
- OATS are probably my favorite whole grain. Aside from being delicious and incredibly versatile, oats are a great source of fiber and they keep your heart healthy!
- ALMONDS are full of Vitamin E (protects against cancer and heart disease) and provide us with healthy fats and protein.
And last but not least, one of my absolute favorite foods in the world:
I consider COCONUT to be a serious miracle food. Besides tasting ridiculously good and having 5 billion uses, it can protect against and treat almost any illness you can think of and it promotes beautiful skin, hair, and nails. In this recipe I use some shredded coconut and some dry roasted coconut chips (a TJ’s product) for nutrients, flavor, and texture. The combination of coconut and mango in these bars makes them taste like a tropical dream.
Coconut-Mango Granola Bars
Keywords: snack oats coconut
Ingredients (18 bars)
- 2 c. old fashioned oats
- 1 c. raw sliced almonds
- 1 c. dried, shredded coconut (I did half Trader Joe’s coconut chips and half shredded coconut for extra crunch)
- 1/2 c. wheat germ
- 1/2 c. honey
- 1/4 c. brown sugar (not packed)
- 2 t. vanilla
- 1/2 t. salt
- 1/4 c. canola oil
- 1 c. dried mango, chopped
- nonstick spray
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Toss together the oats, coconut, and almonds on a large cookie sheet (don’t put in coconut chips yet if you’re using them, they come pre-roasted) and toast in the preheated oven for about 10 minutes, or until the mixture just starts to brown. Toss a couple times during cooking to prevent burning.
While the granola is toasting, whisk together the honey, brown sugar, salt, oil, and vanilla.
Empty the toasted oats and nuts into a large mixing bowl. Add the wet ingredients, wheat germ, mango, and coconut chips(if using).
Use a spatula to toss the mixture until everything is evenly coated.
Lower the oven’s heat to 300 degrees.
Line a rectangular baking dish with aluminum foil. Spray the foil well with nonstick spray.
Dump the granola mixture into the baking dish. Then spray your hands with cooking spray and use your hands to press the granola evenly into the pan, making the surface as flat as you can.
Return the granola to the oven for about 20 minutes, or until the granola is golden brown.
Let the granola cool for at least 2 hours before cutting it into bars.
Store in an airtight container for up to a week.
(side bar: How many of you would find it helpful/interesting to have nutritional information on my recipes? Let me know in the comments or via email! I’m happy to do it if it helps people.)
If you’re curious, each bar contains 198 calories, 4 grams of protein, and 19 grams of sugar. I happen to have a terrible sweet tooth so the sugar content is a little high (still lower than your average bowl of children’s cereal!), but you could definitely omit the brown sugar and/or reduce the honey to fix that. To make a vegan version, you can substitute the honey for agave nectar or maple syrup. For a gluten-free version, just use gluten-free oats and omit the wheat germ!
Since there were so many bars I took the extra to work to share. They got rave reviews! Definitely a better morning snack than a white bagel.
Thanks for reading!