Coconut Granola Bars Recipe

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These nutty coconut granola bars are a meal on the go! They are gluten-free, no-bake, and can easily be made vegan by using maple syrup instead of honey.

These delicious homemade granola bars are truly a meal replacement. Pair one with a hard-boiled egg or some other source of lean protein, and you’ve got a complete meal on the go!

Clean Eating Nutty Coconut Granola Bars

These calorie-dense meal bars are filled with good fats and carbohydrates. They’ll fill you up and keep you going.

Are Granola Bars Actually Healthy?

As with most things regarding food, it depends. The store-bought varieties are often quite unhealthy and packed with processed sugars and corn syrup. But if you make them at home with real-food ingredients, that’s altogether different.

That being said, it also depends on how you use them. If you use a meal-replacement bar like this one as a frequent snack, you probably won’t get the best benefits from it. A bar like this is meant to actually replace a meal. Not be a snack.

I should also mention that, in order to make this a complete meal, you’ll definitely want to pair this with a bit of protein. Something like a hard-boiled egg, a small amount of chicken, or even a piece of string cheese.

Why Are My Granola Bars Not Sticking Together?

When it comes to a no-bake bar, how well they stick together depends on what sweetener you bind them with. It really is all about the sweetener, and honey is one of the best binding agents in a no-bake bar. The only thing better is brown rice syrup. But I find that using all brown rice syrup makes for very sticky bars. It’s not a bad thing, just sticky. So I use a combination of the two sweeteners for the perfect result.

Can I Give My Toddler Granola Bars?

This is a serious snack bar. It’s hearty and chewy and not meant for little ones. This type of bar can pose a serious choking hazard to toddlers. There are other bars you can make for them if you really want your child to have one.

On the flip side, the older kids will love them! Just remember to add some extra protein and you’re good to go!

Eight Coconut Granola Bars stacked on a white plate, sitting on a wooden surface.

Are Granola Bars Vegan?

The short answer is, it depends. (I say that a lot, don’t I?) Not all granola bars are vegan. You have to read ingredient lists to make sure or look for a vegan label if you are buying granola bars at the store.

With homemade bars, it becomes much easier to make them vegan. In this case, simply switching out the honey for maple syrup will do the trick. Just be aware, as mentioned above, they may be a bit more crumbly if using maple syrup. A better alternative would be using all brown rice syrup. It is truly a very sticky substance though, so be prepared to wrap these accordingly. Parchment paper works well.

Recipe Tip

If you want the texture of these to be less hearty and crunchy, you can pulse the nuts in a food processor to a finer consistency. Just don’t grind them too finely. You don’t want nut flour.

Optional Additions

  • To help bring out the sweetness, you can add a 1/4 tsp. salt to the mix. Particularly if your peanuts are unsalted.
  • Chop up some dehydrated banana and add about a 1/4 cup to the mix.
  • Switch out the walnuts for pecans.
  • Dip these in a small amount of almond butter or peanut butter.
A closeup of several Coconut Granola Bars stacked on a white plate.

About The Ingredients

Walnut pieces – These will provide a better texture if you chop them a bit. They should be relatively small pieces for good consistency.

Peanut halves – Here again, you can coarsely chop them for better consistency.

Dried cranberries – fruit juice sweetened. These can be found at health food stores or on Amazon.

Traditional oats – Do not use quick-cooking oats.

Ground cinnamon

Dried unsweetened coconut – This is the finely grated coconut. Not coconut flour.

Brown rice syrup – This can be found at most health food stores or on Amazon.

Honey – You can use maple syrup if you wish.

Pure vanilla extract – This is optional but tasty. Use the real stuff. Not vanilla flavoring.

How To Make Coconut Granola Bars

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the walnuts, peanuts, cranberries, oats, coconut, and cinnamon. Stir well to combine.
  2. In a small to medium saucepan, combine the brown rice syrup, honey, and vanilla extract. Bring to a boil while stirring occasionally.
  3. While the sweetener is still hot, pour it into the mixing bowl and stir everything together.
  4. Working quickly, transfer the mixture into an oiled baking dish (Mine was 9 x 13).
  5. Using a piece of parchment paper that is large enough to cover the entire surface area, press the mixture down using your flat hand(s) to compress it tightly. If you don’t pack it down tight enough, these will not stick together when you cut them.
  6. Place the baking dish in the freezer overnight and cut it into bars in the morning.
  7. Storage: Once these have been cut, it’s best to wrap them individually in parchment or plastic wrap and store them in the freezer. If they warm to room temperature, they start to fall apart.
  8. Note: These can be a bit sticky on the bottom where the brown rice syrup settles as it cools. You can dust the top with a little Sucanat if you find you need to, but these are generally sweet enough. Your best bet is to just have a napkin you can wipe your hands on after eating them. The stickiness is minimal. (Or try dipping the bottoms in dark chocolate and chilling on a parchment-lined cookie sheet overnight!)

How To Store Coconut Granola Bars

While these are best kept in the freezer, you can certainly keep them in the fridge for storage. Simply wrap them well in an airtight container and store them for up to6 days in the refrigerator.

How To Freeze Coconut Granola Bars

For long-term storage in the freezer, double-wrap these. Once in parchment paper, then in plastic. Then you can put them in an airtight container and freeze them for up to 6 months.

Recipe Supplies

If you need supplies, simply click on any of these images to be taken to that product on Amazon. (Affiliate links)

Metal mixing bowl set sold on Amazon. (Affiliate link)
Wooden spoon set sold on Amazon. (Affiliate link)
Organic brown rice syrup sold on Amazon. (Affiliate link)

More Healthy Protein Bar Recipes

Coconut Granola Bar Recipe Card

Copyright Information For The Gracious Pantry
Clean Eating Nutty Coconut Granola Bars

Nutty Coconut Granola Bars

A delicious, on-the-go snack or small meal that will fill you up and satisfy!
No ratings yet
Print Pin Rate
Course: Appetizer, Snack
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Freeze Time: 8 hours
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 12 bars
Calories: 322kcal
Author: The Gracious Pantry

Ingredients

  • 1 cup walnut pieces
  • 1 cup peanut halves
  • 1 cup dried cranberries (fruit juice sweetened)
  • 1 cup traditional oats
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • ¾ cup dried coconut (unsweetened)
  • 1 cup organic brown rice syrup
  • ¼ cup honey
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract

Instructions

  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the walnuts, peanuts, cranberries, oats, coconut, and cinnamon. Stir well to combine.
  • In a small to medium saucepan, combine the brown rice syrup, honey, and vanilla extract. Bring to a boil while stirring occasionally.
  • While the sweetener is still hot, pour it into the mixing bowl and stir everything together.
  • Working quickly, transfer the mixture into an oiled baking dish (Mine was 9 x 13).
  • Using a piece of parchment paper that is large enough to cover the entire surface area, press the mixture down using your flat hand(s) to compress it tightly. If you don't pack it down tight enough, these will not stick together when you cut them.
  • Place the baking dish in the freezer overnight and cut them into bars in the morning.
  • Storage: Once these have been cut, it's best to wrap them individually in parchment or plastic wrap and store in the freezer. If they warm to room temperature, they start to fall apart.
  • Note: These can be a bit sticky on the bottom where the brown rice syrup settles as it cools. You can dust the top with a little Sucanat if you find you need to, but these are generally sweet enough. Your best bet is to just have a napkin you can wipe your hands on after eating them. The stickiness is minimal. (Or try dipping the bottoms in dark chocolate and chilling on a parchment-lined cookie sheet overnight!)

Notes

Please note that the nutrition data below is a ballpark figure. Exact data is not possible.

Nutrition

Serving: 1bar | Calories: 322kcal | Carbohydrates: 44g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Sodium: 26mg | Potassium: 194mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 30g | Vitamin C: 0.2mg | Calcium: 51mg | Iron: 1.3mg
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28 Comments

  1. Where do you find your brown rice syrup?

    1. graciouspantry says:

      At the health food store. Or Amazon.com carries it.

  2. Can you substitute anything for the brown rice syrup?

    1. graciouspantry says:

      Not on these. They won’t hold together. But if you use honey, you might end up with a yummy trail mix!

      1. TiffanyLB says:

        Would it be possible to use malted barley syrup? Or is that not considered clean?

        1. graciouspantry says:

          I’m not sure be honest. I’ve never seen it for sale here so I’ve never used it or even looked into it. I will see if I can find any info on it.

  3. Tammie Smith says:

    I have a hard time finding cranberries sweetened in only juice. I have looked at whole foods. Everything seems to be sweetened with some form of sugar..cane syrup and such.

    1. graciouspantry says:

      The juice sweetened ones are their own brand. Did you ask one of the bulk section clerks? If not, you can always get them on Amazon.com.

  4. Is there any way to substitute out the rice syrup? Unfortunately that is way too much sugar for me. Thanks for all YOU do!!

    1. graciouspantry says:

      Sadly, no. It’s the only natural sweetener I know of that hardens almost like corn syrup. I’ll keep looking for others though…

  5. Shelley Alexander says:

    Hi Tiffany, Your recipe sounds easy to make and yummy!

    1. graciouspantry says:

      It is! Hope you enjoy it!

  6. graciouspantry says:

    Glad you like it!

  7. graciouspantry says:

    I’m not sure the pectin is clean. I could be wrong though, haven’t researched it. Gelatin is not clean and I don’t care for the aftertaste I get from stevia. But if those changes work for you, go for it!

  8. graciouspantry says:

    I think the bananas would be too moist and they would fall apart. Dehydrated apples are a good addition however.

  9. I admit, since losing over 85 pounds doing the Eat Clean diet I thought I had it made…but since then I have become a sudo Vegan. I only eat meat on Friday nights ( date night) and still struggle with dairy ( generally on eating it on date nights as well…in doing so ( this new life style) I have gained about 12 pounds or so! ( 153-166) & I am struggling trying to lose it. My normal ways ( Cooler 1 or stripped) are all with meat and dairy and trying to modify are tough. SOOOOOOOOOO, my point is, finding foods that look good and are ‘ dairy free’ are amazing to me! So thank you, I have been here before for we were both featured for Tosca’s cook book. So again, love finding hidden gems….

    xoxoxox
    Traci

  10. Just wanted to let everyone know that vitacost.com also carries a couple brands of Organic Brown Rice Syrup for around $5. I love your recipes, thanks so much for sharing them! Can’t wait to try this one!

  11. I used peanut butter instead of honey, it was a little sweet with both rice syrup and honey, but it still sticks together and tastes awesome. I picked up my brown rice syrup at sprouts.

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Awesome!

  12. Can I eliminate the cranberries? Or replace them with something else? Thanks!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Nanci – Sure! Raisins would be good if you don’t want to omit anything.

  13. Thanks! Giving them a try this afternoon!

  14. What exactly are “traditional oats?” Does that just mean not the quick cooking kind?

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      MJ – If you ask at the store, they can point them out. They are the longer cooking oats. They are also thicker.

  15. These look great! Can’t wait to try out the recipe.
    How do you feel about Larabars? I’ve been a Larabar regular for the past year. They claim to be natural-just dried fruits and nuts.

    Thanks,

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Amber – Their basic flavors (apple, cherry, lemon, etc…) are clean.

  16. can you substitute coconut with coconut oil

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Raegan – No, I wouldn’t.

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