Grab-And-Go Crispy Granola Bars

Grab-And-Go Crispy Granola Bars
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Kids love this healthy cross between a granola bar and a Rice Krispies treat. These bars are far healthier than kids’ breakfast cereals, delivering a good boost of whole grains and fiber, as well as calcium from the powdered milk. I keep some in little plastic bags frozen individually to keep them from going stale, and toss them in lunchboxes or for a snack on the run.
  • 2/3 cup rolled oats, ground in a food processor
  • 1/2 cup blanched, slivered almonds, ground in a food processor*
  • 1/4 cup wheat germ
  • 1 cup crispy rice cereal
  • 1 cup nonfat dry milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup chocolate chip and/or dried fruit (optional)
  1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Line a 9-inch square or 9-by-13 inch baking pan completely with foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine the oats, almonds, wheat germ, cereal, dry milk, cinnamon, and salt. Mix in the canola oil, honey, vanilla extract, and chocolate chips and/or dried fruit. Mix well, then pour into the prepared baking pan. Press down with palm of hand, evenly distributing the mixture into the corners of the dish, and bake for 15-18 minutes. Check occasionally to prevent burning.
  3. Remove from the oven and using the foil to help you, lift the giant bar out of pan. Place on a flat surface and while still warm, cut into small bars.
  4. Store in an airtight container for up to a week, or freeze in plastic bags.