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Favorite Homemade Granola Bars

These homemade granola bars are soft, chewy and easy to make with only 5 ingredients! A simple no-bake healthy snack that is so much better than store-bought.

More snack recipes we love include this granola recipe, no-bake breakfast cookies and peanut butter oatmeal balls!

Granola bars on the counter.
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No Bake Granola Bars

I’m always looking for healthy snack ideas that are quick and easy to make. These homemade granola bars are loaded with healthy ingredients and perfect for on-the-go. Unlike my oatmeal breakfast bars there is no baking required!

Growing up, my favorite afternoon snack was chewy granola bars. I still love them to this day! They travel well and are easy to grab for breakfast on busy mornings.

My kids love this natural and healthy granola bar recipe. The bars are full of delicious flavor, inexpensive and so much better than store-bought. They are also super easy to make with only 5 ingredients and 5 minutes prep!

Granola Bar Recipe Ingredients

You only need 5 ingredients to make this homemade granola bar recipe! And once you have the base down, you can add what you like.

Granola bar ingredients on the counter.

Find the full printable recipe with specific measurements below.

  • Oats: I recommend using quick cooking oats instead of rolled oats for the best texture. Other types of oats may make the granola bars too chewy or hard.
  • Nut butter: You can use any type of nut butter, such as almond butter, peanut butter or cashew butter. The nut butter helps the granola bars stick together.
  • Almonds: I like to add in sliced almonds for extra crunch and protein. Other types of nuts (like pecans or walnuts) would work too.
  • Chocolate chips: What’s a granola bar without chocolate chips?! :) I love the sweetness they add. I’ve found that the mini chocolate chips are just the right size to add in. For a healthier alternative, you could add in cacao nibs.
  • Honey: I recommend using honey (instead of maple syrup) because it’s thicker and helps the bars hold together. If using maple syrup, you might want to use less or boil it down since honey is thicker than maple syrup. Agave is another good substitute for honey.

Homemade Granola Bar Variations

Feel free to add in any of the below ingredients when making these healthy granola bars:

  • Seeds: Add chia seeds, flaxseeds, pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds for an extra boost of fiber.
  • Spices: Cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice will add warm flavor!
  • Dried fruit and coconut: Dried fruit like raisins or cranberries or shredded coconut add an extra chewy texture.
  • High protein: Add a 1/2 cup of protein powder or collagen to the granola bars.
  • Vegan. Use a dairy free chocolate chip and substitute agave for the honey. If the bars aren’t sticking, roll them into balls instead.
  • Nut-free: Swap out the nut butter for sunflower seed butter.

How to Make Granola Bars

It’s so easy to make these homemade granola bars you will wonder why you didn’t make them sooner. You don’t even need to turn on the oven!

Showing how to make granola bars in a bowl.
  • Stir. Add all ingredients in a medium-sized bowl and stir until well combined. Add more honey to the peanut butter mixture to hold shape if needed. And salt and cinnamon, to taste.
  • Press. Line a 8×8 square baking dish with a piece of parchment paper, allowing the paper to fall over the edges. Using a rubber spatula, press the oat mixture into the pan.
  • Freeze. Place in the freezer for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until firm. Remove paper from pan and then cut the large square in half. Then cut each half into 6 rectangles.
  • Wrap. Wrap bars individually with parchment paper or plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator or freezer.

Expert Tips

  • Line your pan. Not only does this make clean up extra easy, but it keeps the bars from sticking to the bottom of the square pan. You can even spray the parchment with cooking spray for even easier release!
  • Nut butter. Make sure the nut butter you’re using has a smooth and creamy consistency (not dry and firm). This will help the mixture bind together.
  • Consistency. If the bars are a little crumbly and not holding their shape, add in a little more honey or almond butter to help bind the mixture.
  • Let chill. Don’t skip this step! The bars need to chill in the freezer for about an hour so that the mixture has time to set and firm up.
  • Minis. Looking for a preschool snack, play date snack or snack for the team? Cut the granola bars into mini squares and then place them in a mini cupcake liner. Cute, easy and healthy!

5 star review

“After making this recipe 5 times (with the latest batch being doubled), I figure I’d better leave a raving review! :) This simple recipe does not disappoint! I now make these homemade granola bars instead of consistently buying sugar-filled, processed ones from the store. The consistency and flavor is delicious!”

– Nicole
Granola bars in a pan.

Recipe FAQs

Are granola bars healthy?

With fiber and whole grains they certainly can be a well-round snack to have on hand. Making them at home allows you to control the ingredients as well so you know exactly what is going in them!

How to get granola bars to stick together?

Don’t overmeasure your ingredients including the oats and add-ins. One cup of mix-ins is recommended so you don’t throw off the ratio of liquid to dry ingredients. Also, press the bars firmly into the pan. Try using a greased measuring cup to help press them down!

Do I need to boil the honey?

Not in this granola bars recipe! Since we are chilling the bars that is enough to bind them together.

Is this granola bar recipe gluten-free?

As long as you use gluten-free oats it is! Always check packaging on your oats if you need gluten-free.

Storing and Freezing

These homemade granola bars are best if stored in the refrigerator and eaten within a week. To store, individually wrap each bar with parchment paper or plastic wrap and place in the fridge.

I also love to wrap them individually and then place them in a zip top bag in the freezer. I always write the date on with a permanent marker so that I know the expiration. Then we just pull them out when we need them. Great for quick snacks on-the-go!

Homemade granola bars on the counter.

More healthy snack recipes include this Honey Nut Cheerios peanut butter bar recipe, homemade muesli and trail mix!

More Treats with Oats

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Homemade granola bars on the counter.

Homemade Granola Bars

4.96 from 108 votes
↑ Click stars to rate now!
Author: Jamielyn Nye
These homemade granola bars are soft, chewy and easy to make with only 5 ingredients! A simple no-bake healthy snack that is so much better than store-bought.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Freeze: 45 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 12

Video

Ingredients 

  • 2 cups quick cooking oats
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter or almond butter
  • ¼ cup honey , plus more if needed
  • ½ cup mini chocolate chips
  • ½ cup sliced almonds , optional

Optional: Salt and ground cinnamon, to taste

    Instructions

    • In a medium bowl, stir together the oats, peanut butter, honey, chocolate chips, and almonds, if using, until well combined. Add more honey if needed to hold shape, Stir salt and cinnamon, if desired.
    • Line an 8×8-inch baking dish with parchment paper, with extra paper over the edges. Press the oat mixture evenly into the dish.
    • Freeze 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until firm. Remove from dish and transfer to a cutting board. Cut in half. and then cut each half into 6 rectangles. Wrap bars individually with parchment paper or plastic wrap.

    Notes

    Variations:
    • Nut butter: You may also use cashew or sun butter for allergies
    • Nuts: you can leave out the sliced almonds or use chopped peanut or cashews. 
    • Additions: Feel free to substitute the chocolate chips for dried cranberries. Another yummy addition is shredded coconut.
    • More nutrition: 1/8 cup flax seed meal, 1/8 cup chia seeds, 1/8 cup sunflower seeds. Add a Tablespoon more honey for each addition.
    Expert Tips:
    • Line your pan. Not only does this make clean up extra easy, but it keeps the bars from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
    • Nut butter. Make sure the nut butter you’re using has a smooth and creamy consistency (not dry and firm). This will help the mixture bind together.
    • Consistency. If the bars are a little crumbly and not holding their shape, add in a little more honey or almond butter to help bind the mixture.
    • Let chill. Don’t skip this step! The bars need to chill in the freezer for about an hour so that the mixture has time to set and firm up.
    • Minis. Looking for a preschool or play date snack? Cut the granola bars into mini squares and then place them in a mini cupcake liner (see picture below). Cute, easy and healthy!
    Extra Add-ins:
    Storage: Place the individually wrapped granola bars in an airtight container up to 2 weeks.
    Freeze: Freeze individually wrapped granola bars in an airtight container up to 3 months. 

    Nutrition

    Calories: 238kcal | Carbohydrates: 25g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 98mg | Potassium: 173mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 17IU | Vitamin C: 0.1mg | Calcium: 26mg | Iron: 1mg

    Nutrition provided is an estimate. It will vary based on specific ingredients used.

    Course: Snack
    Cuisine: American

    Did you make this recipe? Don’t forget to give it a star rating below!

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