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Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Key Lime Granola Bars!

Finally, the amazing key lime granola bars you never knew you always wanted!  They are SO delicious.  The best part is, they taste and look like proper granola bars.  They have an appropriately large amount of delicious key lime flavor, unlike many of the key lime bars I've tried over the years.   The oats are toasted first, and you then add key lime zest and shredded coconut (you could add some chopped or sliced nuts at this point, too, if you would like).   The key lime juice and sugars are heated together, just to dissolve the sugar before adding to the oats.  The bars cook for a short time at a low temperature, which helps everything blend together nicely.  If desired, you could dip the bottoms or sides of the cooled and sliced bars in white chocolate for more of a dessert bar.  Enjoy!

Key Lime Granola Bars
Delicious homemade Key Lime Granola Bars - Yum! 
Key Lime Granola Bars - wrapped and ready for breakfasts, lunches, or snacks

Key Lime Granola Bars!
Makes ~33 bars

Preheat the oven to 350 F.

Mix together in a large bowl:
6 cups whole oats (make sure to use gluten-free if Celiac or sensitive)
1/4 cup oil 
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/2 - 1 tsp salt

Spread in a cookie sheet and bake at 350 F for 15-20 minutes, stirring once or twice.   Remove from oven and pour back in the large bowl.   Lower oven temperature to 300 F.

Add to oats and mix to combine evenly:
1 Tbsp key lime zest (requires about 4-5 key limes)
1 cup shredded coconut
(1/2 cup chopped or sliced almonds, cashews or pecans could be added here, if desired)

While oats are cooking, you can prepare the following:
In a saucepan over medium-low heat, cook together, stirring regularly, just until sugar dissolves:
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup honey
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup fresh squeezed key lime juice (I used an entire bag of key limes)

Once sugar has completely dissolved, mix key lime/sugar mixture into the oats/zest mixture, making sure to evenly coat.

Spread onto a parchment paper-lined baking sheet.  Flatten with your spatula/spoon as best you can.

Bake granola bars at 300 F for 15-20 minutes, just until light brown on the edges.   Let fully cool in the pan on a wire rack.
Homemade Key Lime Granola Bars
Key Lime Granola Bars - fresh from the oven!

Remove parchment paper to a cutting board and slice with a large knife into desired granola bar size.  I sliced 3 x 11, ending up with 33 granola bars.  For a more dessert-type bar, you can dip the cooled and sliced bars in white chocolate, just on the bottom.

The key lime granola bars wrap nicely individually in plastic wrap - store in the refrigerator for a week or freeze.  Enjoy!!!
Key Lime Granola Bars
Key Lime Granola Bars sliced and ready to eat or wrap for later. 
Key Lime Granola Bars
Key Lime Granola Bars! 

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