Chewy Coconut Cranberry Granola Bars

Servings: 16 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 20 minutes

Cooking time: 5 minutes

Take me to the recipe

gluten free coconut cranberry granola bars

This is the first winter of my adult life that the size of the snowbanks matches those of my childhood memories.

It’s magical, in a storybook illustration sort of way, although it isn’t 100% jolly. Snow forts, skiing, snowshoeing and sliding aside, an overly snowy winter is exhausting.

gluten free coconut cranberry granola barsThere is a silver lining (buried under 315 cm of snow): blizzards and snowbanks make the cosy smell of homemade baking all the more enticing.

To beat the cold and snow I have been cooking extra hearty food and sweet treats loaded with energy to fuel all of our shovelling. This recipe is a recent favourite — a wholesome and nutritious granola bar topped with a wafer-thin coat of chocolate to make them extra appealing for my kids.

gluten free coconut cranberry granola barsIt’s a shame these Coconut Cranberry Granola Bars aren’t school friendly (because of the nut butter), but they are nutritious. With lots of fibre, protein, calcium and more, they make for a great afterschool snack and even better picnic food. And they’re gluten-free, if that’s important to you.

chewy coconut cranberry granola bars

Chewy Coconut Cranberry Granola Bar Recipe

Adapted from Ambitious Kitchen

  • 2 cups rolled oats*, pulsed in the food processor a few times
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  • ½ cup sunflower seeds
  • ½ cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1 Tbsp. ground flax
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1/2 cup creamy natural peanut butter or almond butter
  • 2 teaspoons coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ cup chocolate chips to melt and spread on top (optional)
  1.  Line a 9-inch square pan with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl combine oats, coconut, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, flax and dried cranberries.
  3. In a medium saucepan over medium low heat, combine the molasses and peanut butter (or almond butter). Bring just to a simmer and remove from heat. Stir in vanilla and coconut oil.
  4. Pour molasses mixture over oats-seed mixture and stir until well combined.
  5. Scrape mixture into prepared pan, spread it evenly and press into pan as firmly as possible.
  6. Melt chocolate and spread on top. Refrigerate until firm.
  7. Cut into 16 bars. Store in a cool place.

*Choose oats labeled gluten free to avoid gluten cross contamination common in most rolled oats.

Nutritional profile per bar (recipe makes 16 bars):

Calories (kcal) 223.2
Fat (g) 12.5
Saturated Fat (g) 4.
Cholesterol (mg) 0.2
Sodium (mg) 7.3
Potassium (mg) 341.4
Carbohydrate (g) 24.4
Fibre (g) 3.5
Sugar (g) 10.2
Protein (g) 5.7
Folate (DFE) 24.1
Calcium (mg) 40.5

11 thoughts on “Chewy Coconut Cranberry Granola Bars

  1. Janet says:

    These look delicious, I will definitely be trying them. You could make these school friendly by using WOWBUTTER. My niece has a peanut allergy and my brother and nephew LOVE peanut butter so they were very happy when they discovered Wowbutter. My sister-in-law and I have both used it in baking with no problems. It has the texture of peanut butter and the taste is pretty close AND it is safe for school.

    1. Thanks Janet. I have never baked with Wow Butter so it’s helpful to know that it can be substituted for nut butter.

    2. Hi Janet, Thanks for the Wow butter suggestion. I have never baked with it so it’s gook to know that it’s an easy substitution. Thanks also for the nutrition link.

      1. Janet says:

        You’re welcome. It really does work exactly the same as regular nut butters.

  2. Diane Cooper says:

    Delicious treats!

  3. Chelsey-May says:

    I just finished making these and I have to say I was impressed with how easy it was…..right up until we got to the chocolate. Firstly, I melted 1/2 a cup and poured it on the granola mixture. The granola mixture stuck to it and there wasn’t enough chocolate for the whole pan. So my mom stuck it in the freezer while the second 1/2 cup melted. It still wasn’t enough. They look absolutely nothing like your pictures. I can only hope that they’ll taste better than they look.

    1. Hi Chelsey-May, I hope your bars worked out in the end. They were a huge hit around here. The 1/2 cup chocolate chips should have been plenty to coat the bars when made in a 9″x9″ pan. Is there a chance you used a larger pan?

  4. Sharon aka celticrafter says:

    You’re opening paragraph is so true – the snowbanks are as high as my childhood memories! LOL. This recipe sounds very tasty and I’m going to make them tomorrow.

  5. Lorraine says:

    This has as much protein as some Protein Bars and makes this a great choice.

  6. Janet says:

    I made these on Saturday and they are delicious! My husband loves them and he usually doesn’t like anything with dried fruit in it. I also had an issue with the 1/2 cup of chocolate chips not being enough to cover the whole pan. Now, the pan I used is 9.5″ x 9.5″ so that might be part of the problem but I didn’t worry too much about it. I did manage to get it to cover the whole pan, it just is a lot thinner than pictured. I will definitely be making these again!

  7. Janet says:

    Just finished making my 3rd or 4th batch of these bars, love them! The trick to the chocolate at least for me, has been to put it into a freezer bag (or actual piping bag) and drizzle it over the bars before I spread it out. Have done this on every batch except the 1st one and it works like a charm.

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