Healthy 5-Ingredient Granola Bars

Healthy 5 Ingredient Granola Bars!

John and I kind of have a thing for granola bars. It started when we discovered the glory that is Trader Joe’s Apple (Pie) Bars. Then, we got into more basic versions with rolled oats. But somewhere along the line we got suspicious of the ingredients – namely high fructose corn devil – and strayed away from them altogether.

However, sometimes you really just need a snack that has some serious staying power. And being that this is Minimalist Baker, you know I wanted something simple. Enter: The 5-Ingredient (No Bake) Granola Bar. Things are getting seriously minimalist right now.

Date and Oat Granola BarsRolled Oats

The base for these bars is dates – the natural sweetener supah powah. Then we add almonds, oats, peanut butter and honey (or maple syrup) and mix it all together!

That’s it. Just 5 ingredients, no baking involved (unless you want to toast the oats and almonds) and they’ll keep in the freezer for-ever (that is, if you can resist them for that long).

5 Ingredient Granola Bars5 Ingredient Granola Bars!

If you can’t jive with peanut butter simply swap in almond, sunflower or another nut/seed butter. To keep these vegan, stick with maple syrup or agave instead of honey. And to keep them gluten free, use GF oats. Simple, customizable, delicious.

Peanut Butter Granola Bars5 Ingredient Granola Bars | Minimalist Baker

Speaking of delicious, these little guys are dreamy.

Simple flavors, wholesome ingredients, salty-sweet and lots of crunch. I made a batch last week and am already down to one-quarter of ONE bar. How I exercised the self control to save one quarter of a bar is beyond me. But by tomorrow it likely won’t be there, if I know myself at all.

Healthy Easy Granola Bars | JUST FIVE INGREDIENTS

These really are the perfect bar for a hearty snack because they keep you full for hours and don’t provide a sugar overload. Plus, they pack in plenty of healthy fats from the almonds and peanut butter, and lots of fiber from the oats. Afternoon and mid-morning snack, solved.

5 Ingredient Granola Bars! MinimalistBaker.com5 Ingredient Granola Bars | GF VEGAN optional

4.8 from 135 reviews
Healthy 5-Ingredient Granola Bars
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Healthy, no bake granola bars with just 5 ingredients and a sweet, crunchy texture. Peanut butter and honey complement each other perfectly in this ideal portable breakfast or snack.
Author:
Recipe type: Snack
Serves: 10 bars
Ingredients
  • 1 cup packed dates, pitted (deglet nour or medjool)*
  • 1/4 cup honey (or sub maple syrup or agave for vegan option)
  • 1/4 cup creamy salted natural peanut butter or almond butter
  • 1 cup roasted unsalted almonds, loosely chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups rolled oats (gluten free for GF eaters)
  • optional additions: chocolate chips, dried fruit, nuts, banana chips, vanilla, etc.
Instructions
  1. Process dates in a food processor until small bits remain (about 1 minute). It should form a "dough" like consistency. (mine rolled into a ball)
  2. Optional step: Toast your oats in a 350 degree oven for 15-ish minutes or until slightly golden brown. Otherwise, leave them raw - I just prefer the toasted flavor.
  3. Place oats, almonds and dates in a bowl - set aside.
  4. Warm honey and peanut butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir and pour over oat mixture and then mix, breaking up the dates to disperse throughout.
  5. Once thoroughly mixed, transfer to an 8x8 dish or other small pan lined with plastic wrap or parchment paper so they lift out easily. (A loaf pan might work, but will yield thicker bars.)
  6. Press down until uniformly flattened. Cover with parchment or plastic wrap, and let set in fridge or freezer for 15-20 minutes to harden.
  7. Remove bars from pan and chop into 10 even bars. Store in an airtight container for up to a few days. I kept mine in the freezer to keep them extra fresh, but it isn't necessary.
Notes
*If your dates don't feel sticky and moist, soak them in water for 10 minutes then drain before processing. This will ultimately help hold the bars together better.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 bar Calories: 217 Fat: 8 g Saturated fat: 1 g Carbohydrates: 31 g Sugar: 19 g Fiber: 4 g Protein: 6 g

 

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Comments

      • Michael says

        I wish I had read this comment earlier. I’ll try blending a lil oatmeal with the dates next time. These bars are awesome. I got my parents hooked too.

      • Tynan says

        Is there a way to pulverize the dates if I don’t have a food processor? …or a blender? This recipe looks amazing and I want to try it tonight!!

        • Fakira says

          I was desperate for these, so I used a mortal and pestle, adding about 1/4 cup packed dates at a time. It took a while, but they came out fine. Perhaps not as good as with a blender/food processor, but they tasted awesome!

        • franks says

          Just put them in hot water and simmer them until smooth. Then let cool a bit and add them to mixture. Will be easy to incorporate

        • Annie Hubbard says

          I soaked them in very hot water for about 20 minutes and then chopped them finely with a big chef’s knife, adding a tiny bit of the soaking liquid periodically to emulsify.
          I used 1/8 cup agave and 1/8 cup honey, toasted the almonds and oats, and added dried cherries and sunflower seeds. The nut butter was from Trader Joes – a combination of nuts and seeds. It came out very well – good luck.

        • Jenn says

          I used my Magic Bullet (Single Shot+) to chop my dates. I also use my Magic Bullet for just about everything!

          I just made these bars, added some chocolate chips to make them more appealing to my hubby.. They’re awesome!

          I was spending huge amounts of money each month of ‘lunch snack’ items from the grocery store. Since we now eat nearly entirely gluten-free, this was getting expensive. This month, I’ve cut my snack bill by at least 50% by making all my own snacks: apple sauce, rice pudding, granola bars, energy balls, chocolate coconut energy bars, breakfast granola, and more!

          He’s eating smaller portions now, which are densely packed with the nutrients needed to get through 15 hour construction days! Minus all of the ‘commercial garbage’!

          <3 Love baking at home <3

    • Jamie says

      My granola bars have been in the fridge for 20 min and are still soft. Will they ever harden if they haven’t already? I made the recipe to a t- I thought they taste good but are soft.

  1. says

    I love it, it’s very basic and looks awesome (last two pictures are just out of this world!). As you you mentioned sweet&salty taste I guess adding a bit of salt wouldn’t hurt? Thanks for a great recipe for my on-go breakfasts :)

    • Dana says

      Ah! Yes, I almost forgot to note I use salted PB – always have always do. I made that update and it’s now included in the recipe. BUT if you have unsalted definitely add a pinch of salt!

        • Mint says

          I’m not the maker of the recipe (Dana), but if you don’t have a food processor, you could always get soft medjool dates and form a dough by hand. To do this, just grab the right amount of dates and add a little peanut butter (or whatever other butter you like) and dump them in a bowl. Then, just massage them together until you form a uniform dough. If you can’t find soft dates, just soak your dates in water until they soften (make sure you only use enough water for them to soften, so you won’t have to throw the delicious date water away!

          • De says

            This recipe is very crumbly; does not hold together well at all.Total disappointment. Huge waste of my time and money. Also pictures are not a good representation of the final product. Would not recommend this recipe to anyone. Aldo tried to rate this item and when I clicked on “one” star all 5 stars were highlighted. Why is thin

      • Nelly says

        THANK YOU for this recipe! This is what I was looking for! I made it with almond butter and added craisins, absolutely delicious and easy.

      • Suzyq says

        The dates act as the binding agent. Comparable to forgetting to put eggs in a cookie recipe I would suspect. Their flavor is masked by the pb and all the other goodness!!

        • Justine says

          Well, I just wanted to say that the sultana raisins take the place of dates very well. They are perfect for the binding! I wanted to make these nut free so I could send them to school with my daughter. I used “wowbutter” instead of peanut butter, then I put chocolate chips and dried cranberries in it as well. They were a HUGE hit! Thank you for this recipe! I have been searching for an easy and flexible one for a long time.

        • Justine says

          YES! They did work out. Mind you they do HAVE to be SULTANA raisins since the other ones tend to be too dry. I haven’t made them in a while but my family still begs for them. Even the nut free ones!
          The best thing I think is that I can take my daughter to the bulk barn and let her pick out whatever she wants to put in them.

  2. says

    Oh for the love do I ever miss Trader Joe’s granola bars. Fortunately we get them on a frequent basis in care packages, but making them myself is a much better proposition. Hooray for 5-ingredient cooking!

  3. says

    These look really good. They remind me of Kind bars. My kids have been bugging me to make granola bars and I can’t wait to try these out and pack into summer camp lunches.

  4. Charissa says

    They’re in the fridge right now :) I used walnuts instead of almonds as I didn’t have any on hand but the ‘dough’ tasted delicious for sure. In a bit I’ll know whether or not they’re husband-approved, can’t wait!

  5. annie says

    These are perfect! Delicious, healthy, and simple to put together. I will be making these on a weekly basis for our family of 5. Thank you!

    • Danielle says

      They are simple enough if you blend the dates. I have a basic Oster blender. It might take some patience (and scraping the sides a little) but it works and they still taste fantastic!

  6. Arissa says

    These were incredible! Every person I gave one to asked for the recipe. These will definitely be a staple in my house.

  7. Danielle says

    Absolutely amazing. Made them last night with honey, and between myself my husband and my coworkers they are all gone! I’m definitely making them tonight with maple syrup to see how those flavors work out, and which I prefer :)

  8. Ryan says

    How long do they need to thaw after removing them from the freezer?

    Can they just be refrigerated?

    • Dana says

      Yes! They can. They don’t take long to thaw. I’d grab one out of the freezer and eat it right away, although it is a bit stiff, still tasty! I’d let them out for 30 minutes, just to be safe.

      • Mari says

        Mine crumbled completely. I followed the recipe…not sure where I went wrong. They taste great but don’t stay together. Advise?

        • Shay says

          Mine are also falling apart! It looked like mine had far more PB, but I also followed the recipe. A little stumped. They taste great though!

  9. says

    Thank you so much for this recipe. I saw the post the day before we were to leave on a long road trip. I had all the ingredients (plus I added organic dried cranberries and a touch of vanilla) and made them to take with us (I hate trying to find decent food on the road). They were fabulous!!! My husband loved them! I just made them again and added mini-choc chips – wonderful! I also love your black bean brownies (I listed these on my blog with full credit to you, of course). Such great recipes you share! You truly outshine the majority of “whole”, natural and minimalist foodie blogs on the web! I told my adult daughter about you and she loves your smoothies. Thanks again.

    • Dana says

      What a sweet thing to say! Thanks for stopping by and saying hello, Candice! It’s always lovely to hear how people enjoy the site and our recipes. Thanks again for the encouragement! It means a lot :D

  10. Darby says

    I toasted everything for crunch and flavor. I love PB and honey and had to lick this out of the bowl! I skipped the step of food processing the dates (barely had a cup left because I ate so many from the package). I quartered them lengthwise and then chopped so that I would have date pieces throughout.

    • Dana says

      Yes! dried cherries, raisins, dried cranberries, or just sub additional peanut butter and honey til it all sticks together! Hope that helps :D

    • Donna says

      @Emily….You could also do this GEM of a recipe with soft, dried fig…..I love the flavor and it lowers the IG factor as well!…I often sub soft fig for dates to great effect!

      My…this recipe is a go-to “classic” in our household….I come for the EXQUISITE photography and witty prose…but always leave with a recipe “find”…such as THIS one.

    • Colin says

      Tried figs instead of dates, worked well for as out dates were ‘out of date’! I also mixed in some sultanas and cranberries to the gooey blend, added a little water as well, toasted all the dry ingredients and tossed in sunflower and pumpkin seeds, nice.
      Great recipe thanks!

  11. says

    Discovered your blog through Make Great, who posted her efforts with this granola bar. I made it yesterday with beautiful, organic ingredients. I have experimented a lot with different muesli bars in the past and I have to say…this is, hands down, the best. The dates really give it a sweetness. It’s nice and chewy…not too hard. Thank you, will definitely be checking out your other recipes.

  12. N says

    I just made this for the second time, and will be making it again – these taste and look great!

    However, I’ve found that they fall apart if I take them out of the freezer for very long, and when I’m making them, there isn’t enough liquid to really bind it together. This time around I increased the maple syrup/peanut butter mixture, but would prefer something a little less calorie dense – any advice?

    • T says

      Add some water, ground flax seeds (maybe 2-3 tbs, you should experiment) before mixing. The water draws out some of the starch from the oats, and forms a gum-like consistency with the flax seeds, both of which will make it hold together better. If you end up adding too much water, add some more oats or cocoa.

      I highly suggest adding 1/4 cup raw cocoa to this recipe (it doesn’t have to be ‘raw’, just not chocolate). Add more water if the mixture becomes too stiff.

      If you want a slightly healthier alternative to the peanut butter, try going 1/2 peanut butter and half tahini (ground sesame seed paste) – it will change the taste a little, but once you have it often enough, you don’t notice.

  13. Sheri says

    It’s was delicious, but they fell apart, I didn’t use dates or any other dry fruit could that be why?

  14. Janelle says

    These turned out just as I wanted and were delicious! I actually double baked mine so they were crunchy. I have been doing a lot of the ‘raw’ date/ cacao recipes and wanted a different consistency! Perfect thank you! Next I will try your brownies. I love your bog, especially the unique way you have both introduced yourselves

  15. Freya says

    Hello! These look great, I am hoping to make some to bring camping this summer, so I have a question for you! Do they get all melty and messy if they have been out of the fridge for a while because of the peanut butter?

    Thanks!

  16. Amalia says

    Hey there!

    First off, I am in love with this blog you guys have put together a really amazing website..

    For these I have a question, is there an alternative ingredient I could use to replace the dates? Or reduce the sugar? I am a dancer so grab and go granola bars are a must, but sugar catches up with me during class..

    Thanks! ~Malia

  17. says

    OMG making these asap! (with almond butter) They are similar to my not very healthy but very delicious chocolate dream bars :)
    -Dana

  18. Rae says

    I’ve been looking for a great granola bar recipe and this really seems to fit the bill. My only concern is a comment on “crunchy”. We need a soft one, so I’m wondering if it is really necessary to freeze these? Would rather keep them easy to bite and not crunchy.

    Thanks so much!

    • Dana says

      not necessary to freeze, it just helps them set up. But for a softer bar just leave them at room temp : )

  19. Sophie says

    I think this recipe looks amazing, I’m definetly making these tomorrow! I’m not raw vegan, so has anybody tried baking these to give them a crunch?
    And any alternatives for dates? My stomach can’t tolerate them, as much as I love them.

  20. says

    I just bought a container of Medjool dates at Costco over the weekend and was searching Pinterest for a granola recipe that included them in it. This recipe popped up and I am so glad that it did!

    I just finished making a double batch of these and I cant wait for them to cool completely so that I can cut them. We have been nibbling the edges and it tastes great. Thanks so much for this recipe. It will become a staple in my household.

  21. shakti says

    Lovely bar.
    For those unable to massage…….the mincing or whizzing with little water is perfect. I would not waste the liquid but use it to stir in yoghurt smoothies, soak fruit for puree to eat, make dried fruit rolls, or add to cake mix. It also softens peanut butter to make bars or dips!
    My very old dog likes his treat. He loves fruit juice stirred into his porridge a few times per week and so does not get actual sugar stirred in.

  22. Miss unknown says

    I love these! I substitute dates with dried apricots and it works perfectly! Thnk you so much for the recipe!

  23. Gabrielle says

    What’s better than a granola bar that saves money, tastes delicious, and is health conscious. I made some subs that I thought I would share. I have a nut allergy, so I used sun nut butter, which is out of this world, and I subbed dried cranberries for the almonds. This is really a limitless recipe with all the swaps you can make to it. Thanks so much! Now I can enjoy granola bars without worrying about nuts!

    • Robin says

      Thanks for the tip! My friend is peanut-sensitive so I’m always on the lookout for alternatives for when we get together.

      This looks so yummy! Can’t wait to try it.

  24. erica says

    made these today with agave nectar, powdered peanut butter, & dark chocolate chips as a bonus. they are delicious!!!!!!!

  25. Sats says

    Sounds delicious! I found they didn’t hold together too well even though they were yum. Can I bake them? How long and what temp?
    Thanks!

    • elisha says

      Mine were not stable either. They looked gorgeous, tasted gorgeous, and cut into nice looking rectangles….but when we pick them up to eat they bend and break.

      I’m wondering if I need to add more dry ingredients as I added turkish apricots to the recipe so maybe it was too moist?

      The next time I make it I think I will add cocoa nibs :-)

  26. Sarah says

    Thank you for this recipe! I hosted a play date with 15 kiddos and we all had a great time making your easy granola recipe.

  27. Craig says

    Made a batch with dedicated coconut and some chopped dried apples – they were delicious! Have just made a batch with flaked rather than whole almonds, looking forward to seeing if they’re chewier than with whole almonds. Great recipe though! They’ll be forming part of my healthy diet staples!

  28. Josh says

    I’ve made this a few times, and absolute love it. As an athlete on a pretty strict diet plan, this works perfectly for my carb portion of a meal, and is a HUGE carb booster before games or matches.

    One question though – is there something I’d be able to add to this to increase the protein content a little? I don’t want to increase nuts because it throws the fat ratio off for my plan. If I have to reduce a bit of one of the staples to add a more protein rich source, I’m ok with that. Thanks!

    • Kayla says

      Maybe you could sub hemp hearts for the almonds, or reduce the almonds and add a few scoops of protein powder. :) You could also sub part or all of the oats with quinoa flakes.

    • Dana says

      Hmm, well you could cut back on oats and/or nuts and compensate with hemp seeds! They’re an excellent protein source. You could also consider chia seeds and flax seeds. Hope that helps!

  29. Michelle says

    Made these tonight and the taste is great but having a challenge of marketing them stick together. They seem sticky enough but… They are not staying. Any thoughts on why? We used almond butter instead of peanut because we are allergic to peanuts. We also used a cheap brand dates, wondering if they were not moist enough. Never really got the dough consistency but they are sticky. Going to try again because we love the taste but with different dates. Thanks!!

    • Jenny says

      Had the same problem! I wonder if you reconstitute the dates next time, that might help? (Aka: soak them in water for a bit to plump them up).

  30. Lesley says

    AMAZING! Saw this recipe and I was thinking about my whole kayaking tour! Bought the ingredients as soon as I was done. Made it with 1/4 cup peanuts, 1/4 cup cashews, 1/4 cup almonds, and 1/4 cup chocolate chips. So good it brought tears to my eyes. I will never buy another granola bar again! Thank you so much!

  31. says

    Soooo delicious! I used chocolate almond butter and added flaxseed. My son and I are going to have a hard time saving any for dad when he gets home. Thanks!

  32. Stephanie says

    I have made these twice now, and while they truly are great tasting, mine are always a soggy mess. Any chance you could do a YouTube video? I don’t know what I’m doing wrong :-(

      • Stephanie says

        I have to keep them in the freezer – if I eat them around ten minutes, they are a great consistency, but once thawed (like when you take it to work and it is 5 hours later), you could just roll it up in a ball. What am I doing wrong? Don’t get me wrong, they are delicious, but not easy to eat.

          • Stephanie says

            Just had a thought…. I read somewhere to soak the dates for an hour before blending….. but maybe I’m picking up too much liquid – The first time I added the date water to the blender to allow it to blend easily, second time I just added a tbsp of liquid – otherwise it just doesn’t blend. Third time might be the charm – I’m going to just cut the dates in pieces….. will report back. I also have my son making a batch and a coworker – so if theirs turns out, I’ll know what I must do – ask others to make them for me! But, I really can’t stress how absolutely delicious they are. Why would anyone buy granola bars again??!

  33. Giulia says

    I can’t wait to make these, they look amazing!! Just wondering if I could use crunchy pb instead of smooth because its the only kind I eat and it seems wasteful to buy a new jar. Keep up the great work!

  34. Mel S. says

    I just made this with my 6 year old and I had to comment ASAP. These are amazing! I stopped buying granola once I started educating myself on processed food, so we missed eating granola bars as I couldn’t find a recipe that didn’t used corn syrup. My son, the picky eater loved these! We used pecans instead of almonds because he doesn’t like them. I also added a few vanilla chips, and pressed a few on the top. This recipe is a keeper! Thank you!!

    • Donna says

      @ Bridget….ABSOLUTELY….I do this swap every time …and it works like a charm….I actually like the taste of fig more…and it’s lower on the glycemic index…I have a sneaking suspicion that figs will become the “new Medjool date!

  35. Laura says

    These are amazing! I used 1/2 cup dates 1/2 cup raisins (didn’t have enough dates) and needed to add more honey and peanut butter to get things to hold together and they taste fabulous!

  36. Leena says

    Hi,
    Thank you for this recipe I will try it very soon.
    I am a student and I’m looking for healthy snacks with no oven/blender required and this looks amazing. Only one question: can I add a vegan protein powder to the mix or it will just be strange because of the no baking.
    Thanks again

    A reader from France :)

  37. Jenny says

    So I made these last night and they TASTE wonderful but they wont stay together:/ I think I know what I need to adjust, however, I didn’t want to waste the ingredients again before I got some input:) I left them in the fridge longer than 20 minutes since they were falling apart when I cut them initially, but they still are not staying together. I think I did not chop up the dates enough so the chunks are too big and aren’t dispersed enough to hold everything together. Do you think this might be it? Let me know any thoughts! I love the taste so I just might eat it like granola if I can’t get it right;) Also, I put them in the freeze and that didn’t work either…. Also, I used agave instead of honey.

  38. Jacquie says

    These are delicious! Stumbled across this recipe. Perfect for the gluten free people in my life, and I get two thumbs up from my other half that usually frowns at these healthy recipes! Only made these for the first time a few days ago, and already needed to make my second batch. Thank you!

  39. Amy says

    Just made these tonight. Mine are pretty moist, and didn’t really set up in the freezer. Maybe I need to add more oats? Yours look much more dry than mine. Mine are kind of shiny. They taste delicious though!

  40. Pnina says

    When I found this recipe today, it was the first time that I stumbled upon your website. Hooray for your wonderful offerings and those of the other great internet chefs that help us to feed ourselves and our loved ones well. So, I ended up putting in everything but the kitchen sink :) and there goes the simplicity of just 5 ingredients, ha ha. I used ground flax seeds, toasted pumpkin, sunflower and sesame seeds, tamari almonds and walnuts in pieces, a mix of almond butter, peanut butter and tahini with honey, 2 tablespoons of water and 2 teaspoons of coconut oil as binder, I used raisins and mixed dried berries with 1/4 cup date sugar for the fruit, and lastly I added some pure vanilla extract, and 1/4 cup chopped up chocolate chips! They are delicious, they hold together well (even out of fridge for hours), and have a nice texture. Please just tell me if you also have a hard time mixing all the dry ingredients with the sticky binders?? It was so hard to get everything evenly mixed that I ended up using my hands, but so much stuck to them that it was also a nuisance to scrape all that back into the bowl ( more fun to lick the rest off ) Help please I want to make these again with greater ease :)

    • Pnina says

      oh, I forgot to say that for saltiness and daily dose of iodine I added ground dulse, which is great cuz you can’t taste it at all :) I just learnt that if you are a vegan like myself who only uses grey unrefined sea salt and does not enjoy seaweed then there is a good chance you are not getting enough iodine in your diet : O

    • Dana says

      Pnina, it is a little difficult to mix being that the “wet” ingredients really aren’t all that wet and the dry ingredients are SUPER dry. BUT, with a little patience and strong arm stirring, it all comes together!

  41. Biya says

    i just finish making these… I added All brans cereal flakes …. instead of honey and roll of oats, i added Maple syrup and oatmeal flakes :D … they turned awesome …

    I also really appreciate your open options to add other ingredients :) Thank you so much for this easy peaasy recipe :D

  42. Raj says

    Amazing recipe. I loved making and eating these bars. Not a big fan of peanut butter so used cookie butter that I bought from Costco. Thank you for this great recipe.

    • Sam says

      Using cookie butter totally defeats the point of making these healthier than store bought processed bars though, LOL

  43. Kate says

    For those who are allergic to nuts (or just out!) I substituted sunflower butter for the peanut butter, and pumpkin seeds for the almonds. They were delicious! I’m going to add some more dried fruit next time, as it was bit too oat-y for my tastes. But this recipe is a keeper.

  44. Caro says

    I made these EXACTLY as per your recipe and they were PERFECT! Really delicious AND they stayed together. I couldn’t fault them and can’t wait to make again. I used half quick oats and half large flake oats (old fashioned) which probably helps hold them together if people are having trouble with that. I toasted the oats at the same time as the almonds, it really brought out the flavours. I also wrapped each bar individually in wax paper and stored in the fridge so that they are grab and go. They still stay together even when they’ve been out of the fridge for days though. I don’t have a food processor so just chopped the dates by hand, only takes 5 minutes and a bit of elbow grease. Love this recipe, just what I’ve been looking for as a healthy snack at work or to take out on the trail. Thanks!

  45. mayon says

    Delicious bars ! I am a new vegan and your website makes the transition so easy with all these wondefful recipes ! Thank you ! :)

  46. Amanda says

    I was so excited about this recipe, which was absolutely delicious, but definitely ended up with more of a granola in cereal form than a granola bar. I wonder what made mine fall apart? I feel like we followed the recipe pretty exactly!

  47. Raena says

    I made these yesterday and added some milk chocolate chips……AMAZING!! I can’t believe how easy they are and how delicious! They taste like cookies, and there is no sugar in them!! I am so happy to have an alternative to the chemical-packed processed granola bars found in the grocery store!! Thank you :-)

  48. Megan says

    Oh my goodness, I just made these and I am never buying granola bars again. I used maple syrup instead of honey (we make our own syrup so have plenty on hand…. plus I just like the taste better!) and I absolutely loved them. Thanks for sharing something so tasty and ridiculously simple :)

    • says

      haha! Love to hear this, megan! I know. That’s exactly what I thought when I made these. I used to buy John and I those Quaker chocolate chip bars but they are too sweet and have questionable ingredients. These are WAY better and healthier – never buying storebought again!

  49. London says

    I made this today and can’t wait for my daughter to try them. Very very tasty and will continue to make it. I notice lots of people say it won’t stay together…I did not know how hard to press the mix into the dish so i took a chance of pressing the mix very hard into the dish. Maybe the people having problems need to press it down a bit before they put it in refrigerator. Just a thought!

  50. Roni Yonka says

    These are super easy and delicious. Any way to keep the chocolate chips from melting in the mix? I’m assuming my peanut butter and honey was too hot!

  51. says

    OMG! Just made these for my brother in law who is celiac- so good! I tried another gluten-free/5 ingredient one right before I made these and they were not good. Not good at all. So I was really happy with the way these turned out. I stood on mine, that’s how hard I pressed, and it wasn’t as difficult as I thought it was going to be mixing them up. I thought with that doughy date ball it was going to be impossible, but it wasn’t. Thanks so much!

  52. Germaine says

    I just made these. I roasted the oatmeal and almonds together in the oven. I used creamy peanut butter and honey and I only had 2 dates so I filled in with apricots, figs and prunes. I chopped the fruit up nicely in my blender, took about 2-3 minutes but great consistency, like a fine dice. Mixed it all together, covered with plastic wrap, then pressed down HARD to push it all together, refrigerated for 20 minutes, worked like a charm. Delicious!

  53. Tamara says

    Ever since finding this post, I make granola bars weekly now! I used your basic recipe and changed it a bit using a few different ingredients, and they have come out perfect every time! I love how easy and inexpensive they are, and my boyfriend just loves them. He takes one to work almost every day for a snack and I love knowing that he is eating something so good for him! Thanks again and again for your inspiration :)

  54. rachel says

    You mentioned they last in the freezer forever….Any idea of how long they are good on the counter top? Or should they be kept in fridge?

    • says

      I think they’d be fine on the counter for several days, or even a week. But to keep mine fresh I prefer them in the fridge or freezer. Up to you and how fast you eat them! Hope that helps :D

  55. Patty says

    I made them last nite and boy are these delicious! Instead of using dates I had dried cranberries and cherries… And I used my blender to process them… It was a success and even my boyfriend who is not into healthy eating loved them. Thank you for the great pictures and even better photos!

  56. Keri says

    When I made these, they turned out more like chunky granola than actual bars. The dates were extremely hard to break up. I think maybe next time I will add more pb and maple syrup so that it sticks together better…

  57. Elise says

    I’ve made these twice. The first time I used sugar free maple syrup and I could only find chopped dates. I also did not toast the oats. They were super delicious, but very chewy and easily fell apart. I just tried them again, following the recipe exactly, using deglet noor dates, honey and toasted oats. After reading some reviews, I pressed very hard when putting them into the baking dish. When I brought them out of the freezer, they definitely held together better than the first batch… but were still lacking the “crunch” factor I’ve been looking for. I decided to bake them a bit to see if that would help. Now they are even softer than before putting them in the oven! But overall….these bars taste amazing and I will continue making them!

    • Elise says

      *** Update: I let the bars cool on a cooling rack after baking. After a few minutes they were CRUNCHY!!! If you are seeking Nature Valley-style crunchy bars, I would recommend baking these!

  58. Emmanuelle says

    They are absolutely delicious! I did the recipe with half almonds/hald cashew, and next time I will try a vegan version with agave instead of honey! Thanks again for sharing the recipe :-)

  59. tkaz says

    I’ve got my first attempt in the fridge. The test will be when my kiddos have them for snack after school. Like the easy ingredients, no bake, whole foods, natural sweeteners. I added 1T of flax seed for boost.

  60. Brittani says

    Sooo – I love these. I’ve made them several times, and I just have to tell you a fun modification I made – I used Craisins instead of dates – OMG. SOOOOOOOOOO good. So there’s a fun variation!!! :) Thanks for the recipe, these are my go-to quick snacks – Gluten free (I have Celiac), delicious, and healthy! :)

  61. Patricia says

    I’ve made these twice and they were perfect both times! I only had prunes so I used them instead of dates. Great recipe! Thanks for sharing.

  62. Lorie Bartee says

    These were the best granola bars I have ever eaten. I added a few splashes of vanilla and replaced almonds with roughly chopped cashews. The kids were begging me for more. Even my 3 year old wanted to make a meal out of them. Thank you for posting this recipe!

  63. gail says

    Couldn’t sleep last night so decided to make granola bars for my daughter who leaves home without eating breakfast. These are the best easiest most delicious bars I have ever tasted. I only had raisins and sunflower butter. Worked perfectly. Thanks so much.

  64. Angela Sparrow says

    These are so delicious. I added dark chocolate chips and chopped all the ingredients together. I don’t think I’d buy commercial granola bars again. My friend even raved that they were delicious.
    I love your site. Thank you so much for sharing these great recipes.

  65. Karola says

    I made these last night. V simple and they did look like the picture in the recipe! I blitzed my almonds for 30secs just for ease of cutting up later. Being British, I have just bought some cups (we don’t normally use these in the UK ) so for once, I didn’t have to try to convert everything into metric for hours!

    My main tip would be to use the base of the cup to flatten and press down the mix so that it is compact, flat and smooth and as the recipe says, definitely line your tin with paper to avoid having a nervous breakdown removing the bars! I had a 9×9 inch tin, but as I added around a cup of mixed dry fruit, it worked fine.

    My husband likes them and has them in his packed lunch today – a sure sign of success! Salted hint works really well too.

    • says

      Glad you approved :D Thanks for the tips, too! It seems everyone’s ingredients differ a little depending on where they’re brought, so the “compacting” advice was quite helpful. Cheers!

  66. Charlee says

    GENIUS! So delicious. And I was able to process the dates decently in my Nutribullet. Nice to be able to make a “clean” snack that hits my sweet AND salty tooth at the same time. THANKS!

  67. Shaunah says

    Made these tonight! Came out perfect, but I definitely broke a sweat. Was not the easiest recipe for being minimalistic, but certainly will enjoy them for the rest of the week.

  68. Bridget says

    OK…..just made these with my 3 year old daughter and we LOVE them! I am always looking for healthy new snacks for not only her but for me and my Hubby as well.

    I only had unsalted crunchy almond butter on hand so I used that but I added some granulated “Himalayan Sea Salt” to bring out the flavors of everything! This salt is very healthy for you and I cook with it so I figured “why not”! I also added just a little dried pomegranate to give it a bit of tartness!

    These are DELISH! So happy I found your website! I am looking forward to trying some of the other recipes!

  69. Julie says

    Wow, these are delicious! Thanks for posting this great recipe. I soaked my dates in hot water to soften them and mixed the 5 ingredients together with my hands, which makes a mess of my hands but allows me to “mush” everything together much easier :) I also found the final product to be a bit crumbly but it’s not a big deal. I wonder if mixing a bit of unsweetened applesauce into it would help make it stick?

    • says

      Julie, great question. But I don’t think applesauce would do much besides over-moisten the mixture. I think soaking the dates longer and giving them a good process is your best bet. Hope that helps!

  70. Meredith says

    These turned out great! I don’t have a food processor, so I cut up the dates and put them in a blender–it turned them into the appropriate doughy consistency. I made sure to mix all the ingredients VERY WELL–I could see how they would be crumbly if you do not mix well enough. Also make sure to very firmly press them into the baking pan and freeze for 15 minutes to harden. Delicious!

  71. Megan says

    This was the recipe that originally drew me to your blog and I finally made them today. I toasted the oats, used organic raw almonds, almond butter and agave. They taste great and I will be taking them with me as I travel for work this week to give me a healthy snack while abroad! Thanks for the great recipe!!

  72. Tracey-Lynn says

    I made these for the first time 3 weeks ago… Absolutely Chewy Deliciousness! They are now packed in everyone’s lunch every day.. My husband & son love them! I make a separate batch for myself replacing the honey with maple syrup, just as delicious!! Thanks for sharing the recipe!!!

  73. says

    Will be on a loooong plane journey at the weekend and found this while looking for an easy, healthy and tasty cereal bar recipe. I think this ticks all 3 boxes so I’ll be making these later in the week. I’ll try to let you know how they went!

  74. Anna Clarke says

    I have just made a batch of these for the first time and couldn’t resist trying one. Omg they are delicious! And so easy to make. I didn’t quite have enough dates so made the rest up with apricots and raisins. Totally yummy and they stayed together perfectly. These will definitely be a regular nibble in our home. Thank you so much :)

    Anna

  75. Ian says

    Best bars ever!!! For vegan option use agave. I’m allergic to peanuts so we use cashew butter. Even better tasting from those people that have made both. Also swapped out the Medjool dates for the parnoosh ones from Walmart that come in the square tub. And 1 other ingredient added, organic natural vanilla extract. Adds a nice touch.

    Once completed usually cut up into 1 inch squares from a double batch and makes about 100 pieces. Storing in freezer in tub for up to 2 weeks as well. Everyone in the triathlon club we are in has said they are the best bars they have ever had! And they all want the recipe. 3-4 pieces make a great energy boost when training or a mid-morning/afternoon snack. Well done on the recipe!

    • says

      Yay! So glad these turned out so well, Ian! That’s awesome that you double these and store up for quick snacks. Love that idea! Thanks for sharing and for the encouragement. Glad to have you as a reader!

  76. RD says

    I have made these bars twice now and my husband just loves them. I don’t have a food processor. So, I processed the dates in a blender with a little bit of water and though they didn’t become a ball like yours, the bars themselves set just fine. Also, I toasted the oats and almonds on low heat on my cast iron pan. Was just perfect – thanks Dana!

  77. Elly says

    I made these granola bars a couple months ago and they were amazing. I tried them again last night and they didn’t stick together. I didn’t have creamy pb so I used chunky instead, but that was the only change I made. Thoughts?

    • says

      Hmm, perhaps the chunky set it off since there’s less surface area to bind to the dry ingredients? Otherwise, were your dates a little dry? That can affect the sometimes. But can be fixed by soaking them for 10 minutes then draining before pureeing. Hope that helps, Elly!

  78. Carol Soller says

    These bars are super delicious…only problem is trying to grind the dates. Almost blew the motor on my little food processor. I ended up putting a few tablespoons of boiling water on the dates so my machine would work.
    They are so good that I have already eaten more then I should have.
    I notice you give the nutrition facts at the end of the recipe but how many servings should this make if made in the 8″ x 8″ pan?

  79. Jill says

    These were wonderful!!!! My health food store was out of dates, so I used raisins, and I used pecans instead of almonds. I also added 1 – 2 tablespoons of hemp seeds. This is what I did to get them to stay together: I placed a sheet of plastic wrap on top of the dough in the pan and pressed, and then I took a can of soup and rolled it around on top of the plastic while pressing down on the can. After refrigerating awhile, they cut apart beautifully, and they maintained their shape for almost a week, without refrigeration, until I finished them off. The last bar tasted as fresh and delicious as the first.

    • Dana Shultz says

      Jill, you’re so smart! Love the soup can tip. I just press mine like I mean it with my hands, using some parchment paper, then freeze them. Then they cut perfectly!

    • Dana Shultz says

      Suzanne, I appreciate your insight here. I recognize 19 grams of sugar is quite a bit but it’s from all natural sources. Of course, if that’s too much for you cut back a little or just cut the bars in half. Hope that helps.

  80. Noelle says

    Just started The Daniel Plan with my small group and while grocery shopping a little more carefully than usual, I had the sudden urge to make my own granola bars for my mid-morning snack at work. Luckily I came across your recipe fairly quickly since I was blocking up the grocery lanes searching :). I have attempted making granola bars once before and the family was not impressed with the results. Yours, though, was a WIN with the hubby! I think the key difference was toasting up the almonds and oats. Definitely gave a great flavor. We only added raisins this time because none of the other dried fruit was on sale. Two things to look into now: (1) a similar recipe minus any nut butter (for the picky one – not allergic) (2) a place to find dates and nuts at a less expensive price!

  81. ll says

    awesome recipe, can i use already made granola, instead of the rolled oats?

    also can you eat them straight out the freezer and how long does it last?

    :)

    • Dana Shultz says

      Depending on how chunky/sweet your granola is, yet. But if it’s too chunky or sweet, it may affect the flavor/texture. Yes, I eat mine right out of the freezer and they last for up to a month or more.

  82. Emily H. says

    Hi Dana! I just recently discovered your blog and am in LOVE. I made these today and have one question – mine turned out more crumbly than they should have been. They fell apart too easily. I followed the directions exactly, but maybe I added a little less honey + peanut butter than I should have? How can I make them stick together more?

    Thank you!!

    • Dana Shultz says

      Hi Emily! Some people have had issues with crumbling so refer to the comments/replies for more indepth feedback. But for the most part, they’re crumbling for a few reasons:

      1) Your dates were too dry – FIX: soak them for 10 minutes then drain before blending.
      2) Your peanut butter wasn’t a natural brand or was very thick. Mine was drippy because of the oils. FIX: Use a more natural brand (just peanuts + salt) next time.
      3) You may have used slightly too many dry ingredients. FIX: Be sure to pull back on those next time to make them more sticky.
      4) You didn’t press hard enough. FIX: One reader had the idea of putting parchment paper down and then using a book to really press down hard. That’s one of the biggest keys is pressing hard enough to make sure it all conforms/sticks together.

      Hope that helps!

  83. Patrica says

    I love these and so does my family. To make a nut free version I substituted out the peanut butter for soy butter and put in chocolate instead of the almonds. Perfect for the kids lunches! Thanks again for the idea and the yummy at home original peanut kind!

  84. Emily says

    I made some last week and they were PERFECT! Thank you for this amazing recipe. They were a huge hit with my family too — the whole batch was gone in a day. I noticed some comments about the bars being crumbly and added an extra 1/4 cup of dates just to be safe and they held together beautifully.

  85. kate blume says

    these are WONDERFUL! i’ve made 3 batches of them just in the last few weeks as they are irresistible and so easy to eat on the go (college student here!).

    one thing i would suggest is to put the cut up dates (i don’t own a food processor so i do it by hand) in the pot with the honey and peanut butter. when i tried to add the dates afterward the bars would not stick together. when i put the honey, pb and dates all in the hot pan at once, they bind together perfectly.

  86. Morningstar says

    Dana, was looking for something simple and healthy, like a little scrub brush for the tummy! And this sounded like it. They turned out fantastic, what made it easy for me is I placed all dry ingredients into the warm pan with the honey and peanut butter mixture and wha la everything was covered and mix evenly. I also did 1/2 maple and 1/2 honey along with pecans and almonds. oh delicious!!! Thanks so much!

  87. Angelique says

    Thank you so much for sharing this granola bar recipe. I have made some before from a New York Times recipe. It was good, but I do not like to use a lot of sugar. So I am always modifying recipes, is my son is allergic to nuts. Your recipe hit the spot. I already add spices to sunflower seed butter so it tastes better so adding it to your recipe was awesome. My son loves these bars. I didn’t have any dried fruit except goji berries and I added pepita seeds instead of almonds. We just finished a class and pulled out our tray and cut ourselves a bar. Thanks again!

  88. Brie (Beran) Tickel says

    Delicious!! Thanks, Dana!! I, too, prefer roasted nuts and oats. Still a very quick and simple recipe, though. Had some crumbling apart, maybe I should have soaked the dates……?

  89. Joanna Dawson says

    I had to come back and say how much I LOVED these! I did everything as described (almost). I thought the mixture was a bit dry and was afraid it wouldn’t come together, so I added some extra honey, but suspect it wasn’t necessary. Will trust the recipe next time. We costed these out and figure it was about $0.30 per bar to make, and could probably do it for even cheaper. So delicious, healthy and affordable! Thank you!

  90. Kathie says

    Got it into my head to make these, but realized I didn’t have the dates when I went to the pantry. Substituted with 1/2 figs, 1/2 dried apricots and they are outstanding. Love that they are no bake and lots of versatility with ingredients.

  91. Ruth says

    Made this last night, whilst they taste amazing, they’restill sticky and gooey rather than crispy/hard. Any ideas where I went wrong?

  92. Madjid says

    Hi Dana,

    I made them few days ago and they are really good. My wife and I, both loved them.
    The only thing is that I wanted to know if I could replace the peanut butter by olive oil instead.
    Do you think it will make it ?

    BTW, Thanks for the recipe.

    Madjid

    • Dana Shultz says

      I don’t think that will work as soundly. Perhaps you could sub another nut butter, such as almond?

  93. Danielle says

    I don’t typically have dates in the house so I took a chance and used d’noir prunes – worked great!

  94. says

    I love these bars. Make them about every two weeks for my kids lunch boxes. Healthy and fun to make. I use a rolling pin to smooth them out and then cut them. My son tells me they look more “normal” !
    Cant wait to try some other recipes from the site. Oh…and also…the photography is just fabulous. Thanks again!

  95. Rick says

    Hi there, I have been meaning to try this recipe for quite awhile and after finally getting all the ingredients together I finally got my chance. I must say they are absolutely amazing. I too loved granola but since going gluten free I could no longer enjoy it and have been searching for some healthy alternatives.

    I used maple syrup instead of honey and added a little butter to the liquid since it looked like there may have not been enough. I also used 2 cups of oats and ground 1 cup in the food processor after toasting them in the oven. I also added 1/4 cup of chocolate chips. I toasted the almonds with the oats and gave them a rough chop as well.

    Thanks for sharing this recipe, it will definitely become a staple in our home. Keep up the good work!
    Rick

  96. sk says

    They were amazing!!! The only thing I changed was instead of using a whole cup of almonds, I added 1/4 cup almonds, then mixed in some chopped walnuts, chia seeds, and sunflower seeds. I definitely recommend roasting the almonds, it gives it a very nice crunch. The chia seeds add a different texture to these and also provides the nutritional value. I’ll be making more of these very soon for my whole family! I wish I had known about this recipe years ago, can’t believe I have been buying the crappy garnola bars from stores and wasting my money. These taste way better than any store bought garnola bar. I am trying to lose weight at the moment, otherwise I think chocolate chips would have been a great addition.

  97. Audrey says

    Delicious, mine isn’t holding together too well, I used a little less honey, not sure if that’s why. It doesn’t matter, still very moreish, let’s see how long it lasts.

  98. Janice says

    Oh my…just made these and they are FANTASTIC. I didn’t have enough dates on hand so I did a 50/50 mix of dates and dried medjool figs, which turned out perfectly. I added some sunflower seed kernels, a handful of dried cranberries, and some M&Ms because….well, chocolate. Great for someone who’s trying to stay GF!

  99. Chi says

    Dana,

    Thank you SO much for such a simple yet healthy & delicious recipe. It’s truly what keeps me coming back to your website because you do live up to the name of minimalist in your recipes. I find it hard to spend a lot of time in the kitchen creating something, only to devour it in minutes, and your recipes streamline that process for me.

    I’ve made this recipe twice for my family and it’s fabulous– I use half the recommended amount of dates, double the peanut butter/almond butter + large coconut flakes. My husband truly can’t believe how easy & tasty it is to make our own granola bar.

    Thanks once again for the inspiration ; )

  100. Cela says

    I just discovered your site, and love it (and the amazing photography). Just made these granola bars. They are delicious. I didn’t have dates, so substituted them with figs (Turkish Smyrna from Trader Joe’s). I used raw almonds, but mixed in some salted cashews to add back a little sodium. They held together nicely, although will crumble if handled too much (I will try soaking the figs for a little while before processing next time). Even without soaking, the figs turned into a nice ball of stickiness, which worked very well, and there is just a hint of fig taste. I shaved some 72% dark chocolate on top for an added treat and antioxidants. Thank you for sharing such a great recipe. I am on to try out the black bean brownies.

    • Dana Shultz says

      Glad you enjoyed these, Cela! And super glad you found us : ) Thanks for your kind words and for sharing your experience with these bars. Still one of my favorite recipes to date! Cheers.

  101. Taylt says

    I made these tonight with prunes (all I could find…) and they turned out delicious! None of the flavors are overwhelming (mainly I was concerned that peanut butter can be a really strong flavor in granola bars) and it turned out amazing! I would suggest, like others, putting some oats in the food processor with the dried fruit (dates/prunes/raisins) to help blend it up…I put a few almonds in there too and I like how it affected the texture of the granola. Yum. Can’t wait to try it with other dried fruit!

  102. Katie says

    I’ve found that I can make 32 bars for about 4 dollars which is about the price of a package of 6-8 granola bars at the grocery store. And they taste fantastic. Thanks so much for sharing the recipe.

    Does anyone know how long these last if left in a ziplock bag or airtight container at room temperature? I like to have different containers with mixed snacks ready at hand for me to pick and choose before I have to run out the door and I really don’t want to waste these. I don’t see why these shouldn’t be shelf safe but soaking the dates is what makes me wonder.

    • Dana Shultz says

      Katie, thanks so much for sharing the cost analysis on these! I had no idea they were such a great deal. As for storage, I’d think they would be fine stored at room temp for at least a week. I personally liked to keep mine in the freezer for optimum freshness, that way none go to waste. Hope that helps!

  103. says

    Thank you so much for sharing this recipe! I never imagined that the first granola bar I’ll ever eat will be made by yours truly. And it’s so yummy! Thanks again! =)

  104. wk says

    I din really follow the recipe. Can’t find packed dates so I just replace with dried cranberry and apricot. use normal butter instead of almond butter or peanut butter. The end result is the bars crumble apart while cutting. Can I just remix everything and go bake in oven to salvage it?

  105. Sara M. says

    I just wanted to tell you how great this recipe is! My kids love them (in spite of the dates). I also found a place to get date paste from, so instead of 1 cup of pitted dates, processed, I use 2/3 cup of the paste. (I figured it out by measuring how much date “paste” was after processing.) I also appreciate the fact that you don’t have to bake them, and that there’s no junk in them. Thanks again!

  106. says

    Hello!
    This is a great and easy recipe to follow. I made these with my husband today and couldnt wait to taste them. They are delicious. It also makes us happy to be able to make these at home using our favorite ingredients. I only used one cup of oats and a little extra honey and peanut butter and the bars still came out yumm. Thank you! ;)

  107. Rebecca says

    These are fantastic! I have made several homemade granola bars over the years that are always just mediocre. Not this recipe! These are fantastic, and much more whole food based than store bought bars. These will be a staple in our house for years to come. I individually wrapped them and am storing them in the freezer for easy grab and go snacks. Thanks!!

  108. Carolina says

    Hi! These bars look great, but I don’t really like dates. Can I swap them for something else??

    • Dana Shultz says

      Carolina, I don’t like dates on their own either but in this and other raw dessert recipes they’re fantastic! If you’re still hesitant, try another dried sweet fruit, such as cherries, prunes or raisins.

  109. Dale says

    Hey Dana and John!
    I’m living in Turkey and looking for a granola bar recipe since they’re not available here to buy. Pretty cool that my old college group friend’s wife had the #1 Google hit for “homemade granola bars”!

    • John Shultz says

      Aww – thanks Dale! And it’s amazing that you’re living in Turkey! Let us know how they turn out!

  110. Erisha says

    Hi Dana,

    Thank you for sharing this recipe. Would really love to try but I wanted to ask your advice on whether I can replace the honey with raw cane sugar? Would that affect the overall result in binding? Also, does it affect the method (as it is granulated and not syrup-y or liquid). Kindly advice because I can’t use honey/maple or agave. Thanks.

    • Dana Shultz says

      Honey makes it stick together, so I don’t think cane sugar would work! But, you can use more dates and hopefully that will help. Can you use brown rice syrup? Hope that helps!

  111. Lee says

    These are so good! I could gobble up the whole pan.
    I didn’t use a food processor. It worked just chopping the dates.
    Yum!

    • Connie says

      I was looking through these comments to see if anyone made these without a food processor since I don’t have one. Good news! Thanks for sharing!

  112. Waynette says

    Dana, do you think bananas would work instead of dates? The recipe sounds great and can’t wait to try it.
    Just found your blog and will definitely be back.

  113. Dawn M Davis says

    I just made these for the first time and they are so simple and delicious! Thanks for the recipe!

  114. Em says

    I made these for my lunch! They are so delish! I used less honey and rather when melting the homemade peanut butter I added some cinnamon, ginger and vanilla. I then cut up a small bar of 85% dark choc and stirred it when the mix was still warm. Heaven!! I am never ever buying any form of lunch bar from the supermarket again :).

  115. PatrickGSR94 says

    Love this recipe! My wife and I watched the Forks Over Knives film last weekend and now we’re looking for all kinds of healthy, natural food choices. This one fits the bill!

    Instead of almonds I used cashews, which I chopped up pretty finely. I also added some dried apples and cranberries, and added 1/2 scoop of vanilla protein powder. Now I’m having trouble keeping the bars together. I had to put the glass dish in the freezer for like 2 hours just to be able to cut them, and they still crumbled a bit when cutting. We’re keeping the pieces in the fridge, and they definitely fall apart awhile after being removed from the fridge.

    My dates were moist out of the bag so I didn’t soak them in water or anything. Could the protein powder have made the mix too dry or something?

    • Dana Shultz says

      Lovely! So glad you enjoyed it. Publishing another naturally-sweetened, simple granola bar recipe next week, so stay tuned!

  116. Poonam says

    Hey, I will try these out asap, but one question, how would cornflakes, sweetened or not taste in here, or some museli?

  117. Sara H. says

    I used to love granola bars, but stopped buying them because of the number of ingredients and high sugar content, etc. So I was excited to find and try this recipe. These granola bars are excellent! Very tasty, and very easy to make. I add 1 Tbsp or so of Chia seed for some omega 3, but other than that have made it as posted. My 3 and 5 year old enjoy them too, which is a major plus. Thanks for this recipe!

  118. Anika says

    @Dana These sound wonderful, but what are your recommendations for substitutes for all of the sugar? 19g of sugar is too high for me and I hope there are some substitutes cus I really want to make these!! Thanks a ton!

  119. Jaime says

    Made these tonight and they turned out great! Thanks! I did make a few modifications… I pulsed 1/4 cup of oats with the dates in the food processor (not sure if it did any good because I still got a ball). I subbed 1/4 cup of the oats with 1/4 cup ground flax meal. Then, instead of mixing by hand, I put everything back in the food processor and pulsed until fully combined. The oats were chopped up, but they bars held together perfectly and were delicious! I used maple syrup instead of honey and didn’t add any almonds. There are so many possibilities with these bars! I might try using undentured grass-fed whey protein powder in my next batch. Also, since coconut oil is naturally a little sweet, you might be able to use 2 tbsp of coconut oil and 2 tbsp of sweetener to cut down on the sugar content. Thanks again!

  120. says

    Hi Dana! I made the granola bars last night and they were AMAZING, but they refuse to stick together and keep falling apart!! Am I not putting enough peanut butter or dates????

    • Dana Shultz says

      It is likely that your dates weren’t sticky enough or you didn’t use enough. Next time, soak your dates in hot water for 10 minutes, then drain before processing. A little extra PB never hurts either. Oh, one last tip – put something flat on them and press down REALLY hard so they compress and hold together! Hope that helps!

  121. M says

    What are your rules for publishing your recipes, along with corresponding photos, in magazines? My magazine would like to use your 5 Ingredient Granola Bar recipe and photo in a healthful eating spread, and, of course, we would give you credit.

    Thanks.

  122. Helena says

    I made these today. They tasted absolutely incredible. The bars included: toasted almonds, banana chips and coconut. Here are some tips that I thought would be of help to the recipe.

    1. Not everyone has a food processor. And to save washing extra bowls and dishes from the food processor, you can simmer the dates in a little bit of water to soften them so they become a paste. Stir frequently, adding water as needed. I added vanilla extract and 1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt. Then I stirred in the peanut butter and honey.

    2. I mixed the oats with the dried fruit and nuts, and then added the liquid mixture.

    Next time I will make these, I will take out the honey and add coconut butter or coconut oil. I found these bars to be sweet enough with the dates. Having another stabilizer (coconut) will hold these bars together a little better. I found that, even after pressing them down firmly, they were slightly on the crumbly side.

  123. says

    I made these awesome granola bars on the weekend. They were huge hit with my husband too. I love that they dont require baking (though I did toast the oats). I didn’t have almonds on hand so subbed in some trail mix (seeds + raisins mainly) and they still hold together perfectly!

  124. Eliza says

    Made these the other day and was so impressed with the results. My bars tasted so yummy and have now disappeared within a couple of days. Two of my friends have since tried the recipe and fallen in love also so thank-you for introducing me to food-heaven once again!

  125. Damon says

    I made these this morning, with the addition of a tablespoon each of chia seeds and ground flaxseed, and about 1/4 cup dried cranberries. I also lightly toasted the oats and nuts. I enjoyed them, but they were good, not great.

    The bars held together well for me without refrigeration. I simmered the honey for about a minute or two to evaporate a little liquid before adding the peanut butter. I let it cool on the counter for 5 min before cutting. Not crumbly at all.

    Tip: add the date paste to the pot after the peanut butter has melted, and heat together until it’s pliable. This makes it easier to combine the wet and dry teams.

  126. Michele says

    These granola bars are absolutely amazing. I have made them several times and each time have been asked for the recipe. With the last batch I made, I topped them with melted 70% dark chocolate and they were awesome.

    • Michele says

      Forgot to mention, that one batch I made I was out of almonds so substituted raw peanuts (skin on) which I roasted with the oats and that was probably the most successful batch yet!

  127. Sarah Graves says

    These are great! Made them with raisins, had no dates. I think I would like to try figs next time? Everyone loved them.
    I toasted the oats and almonds and rough chopped the almonds and threw in a handful of oats with the raisins while processing. Great recipe, fully customizable.

  128. Margie says

    These are so great, but you totally don’t need the dates! They make the bars so unbearably sweet. I made them again without any dates and they’re perfect. Make sure you use enough honey or they won’t stick together. Any ideas on a second ingredient to make them stick together so that you don’t have to use so much honey? (I had to use almost half a cup.)

  129. Joel M says

    I’m definitely going to have to try these! Although I’d also be interested in a more energy packed bar to take when cycling, what extra ingredients would you recommend? Just more honey?

  130. May says

    I’m from Malaysia. I have been purchasing commercial bar for my kids which are very expensive in this part of the world. I found your recipe and was amazed with the result after first try! They are so easy to make and my kids who do not like dates love them! They thought the black sticky stuff is chocolate!! Thank you so much for sharing! This is definitely a keeper for me.

  131. Jade says

    Thank you! I’m always on the lookout for a fast, nutritious, efficient breakfast! These are delicious, but next time I’m going to use half the honey. Gorgeous photography, it was very motivating!

  132. Donna Gibson says

    This recipe sounds amazing and I plan to try it! I have a question about the peanut butter though. There are now processed peanut butter products that use the term “natural” because they don’t contain high fructose corn syrup. Is that the product you’re referring to in the ingredients? Or are you referring to the freshly ground peanut butter that contains pretty much nothing but peanuts? Thanks!

  133. Corinna says

    Hi, Dana!
    Thanks for this simple but very yummy recipe.
    For a vegane version, I took rice syrup instead of honey. And, as it was not sticky enough, I added a little bit more rice syrup.
    I used my new Tup***ware bar formers (4 quite big bars which should be cut in halfs or 4 parts when they are ouf the bar former) and, with the rest of the pastry, I used my new Tup***ware molding tower set (6 bottoms of the form are covered with pastry and in the deep freezer for a later use as first layer of a delicious dessert with whipped cream …).
    Greetings from Germany (Bavaria).

  134. Jen says

    These are wonderful just as you have described, but my son is not a fan of peanut butter or almond butter. I know if I take that out, they may not stay together as well. Any suggestions on how to omit the “butter” and still have them stick together and taste good? Thanks!

  135. Diana says

    Hey! This recipe seems SO EASY!! And I really want to make it. But I can’t find peanut or almond butter anywhere. Is it alright if I replace it with regular butter?

  136. Laura Chandler says

    I have made these twice and toasted the almonds, not the oats….YUMMMM. Even my 9 y.o. daughter, who loves her Kashi granola bars, loves these better! Thank you thank you thank you!

  137. Rebecca says

    Insanely delicious, and so easy to customize. I like adding raw pumpkin seeds, raw sunflower seeds, chia seeds and coconut, and using various nuts. I’m seriously addicted. Can’t thank you enough for sharing this recipe.

  138. Aimee says

    Did this and subbed the dates for sultanas. Blended them till they were a purée to hold them together. Worked very well!!

  139. Wesley says

    Yum…added dried cranberries, sunflower seeds, chia seeds and hemp harts so I increased the peanut butter and honey by a little bit to add some extra bind. Can’t wait to havethese as a snack at work.

  140. Jesse says

    Have you found the honey/agave syrup to be a necessity? (as a bonding agent) I know the dates are sweet enough as they are, so is the additional sweetness required?

    • Dana Shultz says

      Not at all! It’s more for extra stickiness and binding. But add a few more dates and then go without!

    • Ruchi says

      We tried it without honey/agave syrup and it turned out sweet enough for us. The recipe is so easy that the whole family pitched in. My husband processed the dates and our four year old added chocolate chips. It turned out great! Thanks so much for the recipe.

    • Crystal says

      Hi Seth, I’ve tried similar recipes using figs or raisins – the raisins need to be super soft, you can soak them in warm water 5-10 mins first to soften them – and they’ve worked great. Hope that helps!

  141. Renee says

    Amazing! Will never buy store bought granola bars again! And I don’t even like dates…usually! Thanks so much for sharing!
    I toasted my oats and slivered almonds, used chunky peanut butter, added mini chocolate chips and dang brand coconut chips. Irresistible! Can’t wait to try other combinations!

  142. Lisa Smith says

    These are so awesome. I can’t believe how great they taste with so few ingredients. I’ve made them several times, already & shared the recipe with all my friends! I’ve added pecans both times so technically, mine were more than 5 ingredients! I used figs once instead of dates because I had them on hand which worked fine as a substitute. They just have little minute seeds in them but the texture works well to hold the bars together. I also added some dried plums (prunes) once, as well. This recipe is so yummy & versatile, you could use all sorts of different things! I dry fresh fruit from my farmers market so I’m planning on making some with the different fruits over the winter. I store my granola bars in the freezer in a rubbermade container which is perfect to grab one out to put in my lunch. I wrap it in a small piece of foil. Thank you so much for sharing this wonderful recipe with us!! I would encourage everyone to try it. You won’t be disappointed and you won’t feel any guilt because they are so simple and healthy!

  143. says

    Just made these, they are quick and easy and taste delicious! These delights will be taking the place of my chocolate bar addiction. Love love love ! Will also be perfect for those busy days when you skip breakfast. Thank you for my happy joy granola bars!

  144. Jeanette says

    Delicious. Didn’t have almonds but used pecans which I toasted and some coconut which I also toasted, added the vanilla, used half honey and half maple syrup. So simple and easy to put together, made them yesterday and they barely lasted the day. Thanks for the recipe!

  145. Isabelle says

    I made some so our two live-in college students can more easily fight the hungries and not give in to junk before they can get home again. I shared half the bars with a friend whose family found them so perfect, she’s going to make them for her family now, too. Thank you so much.

  146. Hannah says

    Thanks!
    haha made them as study snacks. They were so quick and easy that I could make them in one study break, and they lasted me a few days (cut it into 36 little squares though)

  147. Mary says

    Dana I just made using unpasterized warmed honey and added a
    bit of light canola oil to maximize on the holding.
    Also I added Tblspn of Fr.s Coaco pwder for extra taste.

  148. Catherine says

    These are soooo good and easy to make, perfect for the lunch box, I didn’t have whole almonds so I used flaked, which I toasted.

  149. says

    My husband tried this recipe…and it is really so so delicious!! I will not buy granola bars in the supermarket ever again! If you don’t mind, I think I will put your recipe on my blog (maybe I’ll add a few ingredients…and I will of course make sure your blog is mentioned)! :-)

  150. ashton says

    Hi! I love your site! Such cute photos. How do you know what the nutrition information from your recipe? I have a wordpress blog too! How do I get the cute recipe plug-in that you use for your site?
    Thank you!!

    A

  151. Lauren says

    Made these today substituting the dates for raisins. Taste is super duper! Only one problem – they aren’t very firm and don’t hold their shape well. Think the raisins were a little too juicy after soaking (oops). Will be trying again with dates in the near future as the simplicity and taste of this recipe is absolutely fab! Thank you so much for sharing :) xx

  152. says

    Thanks! simply but good recipe. I tried with dried fruit intead of dates (i dislike them) and works perfect. Now i am going for my second try ;). Greets from Chile. (sorry for my poor english)

  153. Maren says

    I really want to love these, but I cannot get them to bind together. When they didn’t set, I added more honey, PB and dates, but they still crumbled as soon as I took them out of the pan. Suggestions? I love the flavor of these and would happily make them weekly if I could actually get them to be “bars.” Thanks!

  154. Mia says

    Will it effect the flavor allot if I skip the honey or only take half of it? I really want an super healthy granola bar :)

    And I’m allergique to almonds! What should I replace it with???

    Thanx allot//Mia

  155. agens says

    I also thought that 20 grams of sugar was ridiculous, but investigated because it didn’t seem possible. The only added sugar is the honey – the dates have fiber and thus don’t count against your sugar counting. (unless your a diabetic, don’t know how that works). Honey has 17 grams of sugar per tablespoon and their are 4 tablespoons in the entire recipe. So its less than 7 grams of added sugar per bar. Not bad, about what I allow for store-bought. Thank you!!

  156. Arunima says

    Just made a batch of these granola bars, they came out beautiful…Thank you, for posting such a simple, easy granola bar recipe.

    • Dana Shultz says

      I haven’t tried using figs but I think it would work. If they’re dry, just soak them in warm water for 10 minutes then drain. As for the oats, rolled oats are best, but instant will work in a pinch.

  157. says

    I used 1/8c penut butter, 1/8c almond butter, and added chocolate chips for flavor and unsalted sunflower seeds for added energy. This is really tasty. Thanks for sharing.

    • says

      Even my wife (who doesn’t like almonds or traditional, “trail mix” granola bars) likes this a lot. I’m impressed with how this turned out.

  158. SaigeofInsanity says

    I’ve been looking for a decent substitution for my Bear Naked addiction… Whipped these bad boys up, and voila! My wallet and I thank you ever so much for helping me get my lunch break fix. :-)o

  159. Ellen Silveria says

    LOVE these – I’ve been making a fall version substituting Pumpkin Butter (I used Trader Joe’s) for the honey, and using almond butter. I also add walnuts, flax and chia seeds, and cinnamon. I keep them in the fridge at work and have made them several times because everyone gobbles them up :)

    What is the best food processor to use for dates? My old cuisinart couldn’t handle them.

  160. Liz says

    Just save yourself some time and go ahead and double this recipe!! These are so easy and super yummy. Finally something the whole family loves :)

  161. Chris says

    Hey, great recipe. Easy, simple and delicious for my long mountain bike rides and races. Just wondering should I bake the final product so it wont fall apart in my back-pack when I am riding?

  162. says

    I just made these! I think they will turn out okay. In the refrigerator cooling and hardening. I took a tsp of coconut oil and three small blocks of some organic dark chocolate and melted in microwave. Drizzled over them to give that small chocolate taste.

  163. Jane Kannar says

    I also added sunflower seeds, pepitas + dried cranberries and used crunchy peanut butter (all i had). Easy to make + delicious! Thanks

  164. Dave says

    Like “De” my bars did not hold together but unlike “De” for me it’s not a complete waste of time and money because I simply decided instead of failed granola bars I made healthy and delicious trail mix.

  165. Didi says

    Instead of bars I got a crumbly, albeit tasty, mess. I followed the directions to a T and THEN saw the note at the end about “if your dates aren’t sticky and moist…”

    That comment should be in the directions. I had to freeze the granola crumbles and they taste good, but I was hoping for the convenience of a bar. Thanks for the recipe, but put all directions and notes in the text, not at the end.

  166. says

    Hi! This looks delicious, I cant wait to give it a try. My only concern is that only the instant/quick rolled oats (Quakers) are available where I live. Would this recipe work with quick oats should I add something else to it?

    Thanks in advance

  167. alaskamom says

    I just made these. Had to put them in the freezer to get them to stick together better. They are really chewy and taste better than store bought. The second batch i added craisins instead of dates, hemp heart seeds and flax seeds.

  168. says

    These have changed my life. I also recently discovered my favorite granola bars had corn syrup in them. These are a brilliant alternative and so much more satisfying!

  169. Denise says

    I found your website last fall and have since made these bars many times for my family, for friends, even took them to work a couple of times to share (they were gone within minutes). They are always a huge hit. Just wanted to say how much I appreciate y’all! Minimalistbaker.com is the bomb!!!

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