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Copycat Nature Valley Granola Bars

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Imagine yourself eating your favorite granola…

granola bars

Now imagine eating your favorite granola… in the form of a granola bar! Nature Valley Granola Bars… Do you know the ones I’m talking about?

Those crunchy bars in the green wrappers? My friend Sarah calls them “horse food” because they’re made up of oats and sugar—things that horses like to eat. But the following granola bar recipe is much too good to share with horses. Sorry, horses.

granola bars 1

Soccer Fuel

When I was in high school (it seems like a lifetime ago!), I played on the varsity soccer team, and our daily practices fell right after school. So I got in the habit of grabbing a bar—often a Nature Valley granola bar—to munch in the locker room while dressing out.

I’d completely forgotten about my past with Nature Valley until a few days ago, when I tasted an attempt at what was supposed to be a chewy granola bar.

“Woah, these taste exactly like Nature Valley oats-n-honey bars,” my roommate proclaimed after trying a bite. “Except, maybe these are even better!” (She quickly proceeded to eat two whole bars.)

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Nature Valley Granola Bars Recipe

Category: Healthy & Gluten-Free Recipes

  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup rice crispies (I used brown rice crispies)
  • 3 tbsp oat flour (You can make your own by grinding oats in a food processor*.)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil or veg oil
  • 3 tbsp agave or other liquid sweetener
  • 1 packet stevia (or 1 tbsp dry sweetener)

Preheat oven to 350 F. Combine dry ingredients, then mix in wet. Transfer to a 7×5 baking dish (lined with parchment paper), and press down. Squish HARD. Hard hard hard. Then cook for around 18 minutes. Wait at least 20 minutes before trying to cut into bars. *If making oat flour, measure the 3tbsp after grinding.

View Nutrition Facts

granola bars1

Other bars I’ve done:

homemade-luna-bars_thumb

Homemade Luna Bars

homemade-larabars_thumb

Homemade Larabars

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Katie is the baker, photographer, and author of the popular blog Chocolate-Covered Katie. Her favorite food is chocolate, and she believes in eating a balanced diet that includes dessert every single day. More about Katie—> 
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  1. Awesome! We used to buy these a lot and they were so crunchy they’d displace teeth – but so yummy. I love the idea of making my own – maybe dip the bottom into some chocolate or a peanut butter coating. Yum Yum!

  2. We have the Sam’s Club sized box of those bars in our pantry b/c my husband is obsessed and takes 2 to work every day. It’s one of those things I feel bad having on hand so maybe I’ll have to try making these at the beginning of the week instead!

  3. Katie this looks so easy and delicious. I would much rather make my own bars than buy them from the store… and all these ingredients are 99% of the time in my kitchen. Perfect for weekday snacking, nice post!

  4. I used to love the peanut butter version of these nature valley bars! I’m usually more into a chewy bar/ snack but something about the crunch of these was so great.

  5. Beth says:

    I’m another person that was obsessed with these in high school! I hated the school lunches and would often bring a granola bar and an apple instead. I’ve stopped buying them because they’re so sugary, so I’ll have to give these a try!

  6. Jess says:

    Nature Valley = <3

    I ate these all through high school, but now they're a bit sweet for me. I opt for the Kashi granola bars when they're not too expensive!

  7. Jess says:

    Nature Valley = <3

    I ate these all through high school, but now they're a bit sweet for me. I opt for the Kashi granola bars when they're not too expensive 🙂

  8. Sonja says:

    Haha the funny part about your friend calling them horse food is that the oats-n-honey bars are exactly what my friend and I feed our horses as treats! We always have, since they come conveniently two to a packet. We eat one, and then our horses do xD I’m excited to try these out…though you’re probably right, they won’t make it to share with my horse 😉

  9. Ha! What horses eat! That is too funny! ….I do like your recipe quite a bit and think it would be worth a try for sure!

  10. I JUST made a recipe like this one the other day, trying purposefully to copy the nature valley bars. I love this post! How ironic!

  11. Danielle says:

    You reciepe sounds so amazing I have to try to make them. I was wondering do you use quick cooking oats or regular oats or does it not matter?

    Thank you.

    1. No idea if they’d work with quick oats… maybe… But I used regular :).

  12. kate says:

    Ah wonderful! I love these bars and to think that I could make a healthier version myself is great. Also I made your healthy sugar cookies last night for my housemates and every time a new person bit into one they looked like they were going to cry from happiness. SOOOO SOFT! I am a stickler when it comes to my desserts…and they were so much better than normal sugar cookies in my opinion.

  13. sarah g says:

    My favorite bars are probars! They’re so expensive though, ranging from 2.29-3.29 each! I mean they are pretty nutrient dense, so its like eating an entire meal. So i guess its worth the price.

    I think you should make a home made probar!
    http://theprobar.com/products/

  14. kathy says:

    What size of pan did you use? I made your fudge recipe the other day and noticed you didn’t have a pan size or quantity it makes, and the size I used was too big. My fudge was very flat. Want to get the right size so they cook properly. Thanks

    1. I used an 8×8… but if you want them thicker/thinner, you can use a different size :).

  15. Jessica says:

    I just bought some vanilla stevia drops for making your chocolate bars. Could I use that in place of the agave?

    1. I don’t think so… but I haven’t tried it.

  16. Amazing! I will definetly be trying these out 🙂

  17. These look awesome! And sweet photography…the shoe lace dealio is pretty. 🙂

    These are going on my weekly foodie favorites! I’ve been looking for granola recipes.. granola bars are even better.

    As for my favorite bars..I like the fiber one chocolate chip bars and there are these new Special K chocolate and pretzel bars that are the perfect salty and sweet. Yum.

  18. Holly says:

    These look wonderful! We really like all the varieties of KIND bars in our household. They have the good crunch we like and are chock full of healthy nuts and dried fruits. Have you ever attempted to recreate those? Our favorite is the almond cherry with dark chocolate!

    1. I’ve never actually had a Kind bar! I really should try them someday :).

  19. Jen E says:

    Are these hard like the nature valley? We buy the clif bars now, because they are the only ones I can find vegan, but I absolutely miss my favorite genisoy bars the chocolate mint ones! have you ever tried to come up with a vegan marshmallow?

    1. It depends on how long you cook them. Cook them longer for crispiness, and store in a glass container (as opposed to plastic).

      LOL I would have no idea where to begin in making vegan marshmallows!

    2. Shannon says:

      http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/alton-brown/homemade-marshmallows-recipe/index.html

      This is the best marshmallow recipe I’ve found that doesn’t have anything to do with eggs. The best part is he tells you how to make mini-marshmallows! I sat there after I read it and couldn’t believe I hadn’t thought of that. 🙂

      1. Jamie says:

        Gelatin in NOT vegan though. You would need a vegan replacement for that.

        1. I’ve always wanted to try a marshmallow recipe, subbing agar (or the one brand of vegan “gelatin” they sell at whole foods) for the gelatin. Someday!

          1. Anonymous says:

            You could order Genutine off the internet. It’s carrageenan and vegan. I saw a marshmallow recipe that calls for it recently, but can’t remember the source.

          2. Christine says:

            You could order Genutine off the internet. It’s carrageenan and vegan. I saw a marshmallow recipe that calls for it recently, but can’t remember the source.

  20. emma says:

    Hey Katie,
    I can’t have oils because of a lot of things, but is there anything I could substitute in for the coconut oil? Thanks

    1. Anonymous says:

      Why not try applesauce, it is used in place of oil in other recipes, would make them maybe a little softer?

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