Peanut Butter Cup Granola Bars

June 6, 2021

Say goodbye to conventional granola bars that are loaded with sugar and artificial flavors. These peanut butter cup granola bars are soft, chewy granola bars that you know and love, but made gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, and refined sugar-free. And not to mention, they taste more like candy bars than healthy granola bars. Whether you’re making these for kids or the kids-at-heart, you’re going to love these.

Back in the day when I used to eat more “conventional” candies, I loved Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. I mean, who doesn’t love creamy peanut butter surrounded by milk chocolate?! They were some of my favorites, but as I recovered from my eating disorder and started making healthier shifts in my life, I quickly learned that they weren’t healthy by anyone’s definition. Of course, they can be delicious from time-to-time, and I’m a firm believer that we shouldn’t hold ourselves back from the delicious treats that we love, even if they aren’t the healthiest. But still, I’m happy that there’s healthier swaps out there, so we can make recipes like this one!

I have strong memories as a kid of opening my lunch box and seeing one of those Quaker chewy granola bars. I LOVED those things, and always looked forward to the days when my mom would pack me one. Now being a mom myself, I want my boys to have the same feeling of nostalgia that I have when I reminisce about my school lunches. So, that’s how this recipe came to be! It’s my way of providing my boys with that nostalgia and excitement without sacrificing their health. They love that they get to eat essentially a chocolate peanut butter bar, and I love that they’re eating healthy. It’s a win-win in my book!

What you need to make these healthy peanut butter cup granola bars

These bars include only six different ingredients (seven if you included the melted chocolate) and, like most of my recipes, are super easy to put together. This is also a great “meal prep” recipe that you can prepare ahead of time and store in the fridge to eat throughout the week! If you’re in the market for a super simple “grab-and-go” breakfast treat, then look no further, because this recipe was made for YOU!

  • Natural Peanut Butter: When looking for what kind of peanut butter to purchase, I recommend buying one that is creamy, liquidy, and easy to stir, and also purchasing a natural option. If your peanut butter is dry, then your bars will come out dry, too. I love the Wild Friends brand peanut butter, but you can use any brand. If you avoid peanut butter or want a paleo-friendly option, you can definitely swap it for almond butter, cashew butter, or tahini! 
  • Honey: Honey provides the sweetest for this recipe and is our replacement for sugar!
  • Vanilla Extract: Vanilla extract makes every baked good taste a million times more flavorful!
  • Old Fashioned Rolled Oats: You can use regular or gluten-free rolled oats.
  • Unsweetened Coconut: The coconut adds a nice subtle flavor to this recipe.
  • Peanut Butter Cups: I love the Justin’s brand for a healthier pick, or the sunflower butter cups from Trader Joe’s!
  • Melted Chocolate: This is option, but who doesn’t love additional chocolate?!

 

How to make these peanut butter cup granola bars

  1. Start by lining an 8×8 square dish with parchment paper, and greasing the inside first so the paper sticks.
  2. In a medium/large pot on the stove over low heat, mix together the peanut butter, honey and vanilla extract. Once combined, remove from the heat, and stir in the rolled oats and coconut, making sure to coat well.
  3. Let the mixture continue to cool for about 10 more minutes, then stir in the peanut butter cup pieces.
  4. Transfer granola mixture to the baking dish and make sure to press everything down and really pack it in as best as you can. You can use the palm of your hand or the bottom of a measuring cup. This is the key to making sure the bars don’t get crumbly.
  5. Cover the dish and refrigerate overnight. Or, if you are short on time, just freeze them for 45 minutes.
  6. Remove from fridge/freezer, slice into 8-10 bars.
  7. Melt chocolate and drizzle on top. The chocolate will set quickly since the bars are cold.
  8. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

And that’s IT! Just a few quick and easy steps and these dreamy peanut butter cup granola bars can be yours to enjoy.

If you make this recipe, be sure to leave a review and a rating below. This helps others decide whether to make my recipes, and also helps it appear in Google searches – so thank you for supporting me! And also, since I practically live on Instagram, feel free to tag me in your creations, so I can see them and repost on my IG stories! Enjoy! xx

Peanut Butter Cup Granola Bars

Author: Nicole Modic of @KALEJUNKIE

Prep Time 25 mins
Cook Time 0 mins
Total Time 25 mins
SERVES 8 bars
Print It Pin It
Say goodbye to conventional granola bars that are loaded with sugar and artificial flavors. These peanut butter cup granola bars are soft, chewy granola bars that you know and love, but made gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, and refined sugar-free. And not to mention, they taste more like candy bars than healthy granola bars. Whether you're making these for kids or the kids-at-heart, you're going to love these.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup creamy, natural peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened coconut finely shredded
  • 10-12 mini peanut butter cups I recommend the Justin's brand
  • 1/4 cup melted chocolate optional, for drizzling

Instructions

  • Line an 8x8 square dish with parchment paper, greasing the inside first so the paper sticks.
  • In a medium/large pot on the stove (or microwave) over low heat, mix together the peanut butter, honey and vanilla extract. Once combined, remove from the heat, and stir in the rolled oats and coconut, making sure to coat well.
  • Let the mixture continue to cool for about 10 more minutes, then stir in the peanut butter cup pieces.
  • Transfer granola mixture to the baking dish and make sure to press everything down and really pack it in as best as you can. You can use the palm of your hand or the bottom of a measuring cup. This is the key to making sure the bars don’t get crumbly.
  • Cover the dish and refrigerate overnight. Or, if you are short on time, just freeze them for 45 minutes.
  • Remove from fridge/freezer, and slice into 8-10 bars.
  • Melt chocolate and drizzle on top. The chocolate will set quickly since the bars are cold.
  • Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Did you make this recipe?

I’d love to see what you made - tag @kalejunkie
in your posts and I’ll re-share!

S
H
A
R
E

 

WHAT DID YOU THINK?

Rate + Review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *