This hands down is the best granola bar recipe I have ever made. There are endless possibilities (chocolate chips and almonds, craisins and white chocolate chips, cinnamon and raisin... you name it!), and it's so easy to make. I, too, had to experiment with the issue of them falling apart when made as directed, and I found 2 things. If you cook the mixture exactly as directed (until the sugar is dissolved), they will fall apart unless they are refrigerated. I experimented with a few different ways, and here's a simple improvement to keep them together better (even out of the refrigerator). I used 3 tablespoons of butter (a tablespoon less than called for) and 3 tablespoons of honey (again, a tablespoon less) with the 1/2 cup of brown sugar. Instead of simply melting, I let it boil at a rolling boil for about 2 minutes (my candy thermometer is broken, but I'd guess it was about to the soft ball stage). It doesn't change the taste at all, but it does help it to stick together better. I also put my chocolate chips on top and waited until they melted, then spread them around. That way it also helps to hold together better as well as to evenly distribute the chocolate. As far as storing goes, as soon as I'm able, I cut them into bars (lengthwise I cut it in half, then width-wise I cut it into about 8 sections, making 16 bars for a 9x13 pan) then put each bar into a snack-sized zipper baggie. Perfect for lunches and snacking on the go!
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This hands down is the best granola bar recipe I have ever made. There are endless...