Homemade Chewy Chocolate Chip Granola Bars

Everyone needs a good no-bake granola bar recipe. Most store-bought granola bars are not as healthy as people think they are. They have added sugars and oils that add unwanted calories and fat to your diet. This chewy chocolate chip granola bar recipe is a convenient, satisfying, and simple snack option for adults and kids alike.

With the help of a food processor, these bars can also be ready to eat in less than 10 minutes! Though, instructions are also included in case you don’t have a food processor.

For individuals with food allergies, these homemade chewy granola bars are also dairy-free and gluten-free.

Note: This recipe post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Affiliate links are clearly marked with an asterisk (*).

chewy chocolate chip granola bars stacked on a white plate

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

You’re going to love this chewy granola bar recipe for a few reasons. Other than being super tasty, this recipe is:

  • Versatile- this is an excellent “base” granola bar recipe to add any additional ingredients- See “Notes” sections in the recipe card
  • Portable- since these don’t need to be refrigerated, these soft granola bars are and easy on-the-go snack
  • Nutritional- compared to most commercially-prepared granola bars, these provide more nutritional benefits including fiber
  • No bake- no oven or stovetop is needed when making these chewy chocolate chip granola bars!
  • Gluten free- for those with Celiac Disease or a gluten-intolerance, these are great to keep on hand
  • Dairy free- if milk or lactose are an issue, these healthy bars are also dairy-free since dairy-free chocolate chips are used!
  • Low sugar- I use maple syrup, but only enough to help the ingredients stay together. Additionally, you can adjust the amount of chocolate chips to your preference.

Are Granola Bars Good For You?

Granola bars CAN be a healthy part of a balanced diet. However, some options are better than others.

Many granola bars you find in grocery stores are made with additives that help increase the shelf life of the product. This means that preservatives or trans fats could be added.

Some homemade granola bar recipes you find online may also use ingredients like coconut oil which adds saturated fat. This is not recommended for those who need to limit saturated fat in their diet.

But if you use healthy, whole-food ingredients, granola bars can be a healthy and convenient snack.

Chewy Chocolate Chip Granola Bar Nutrition

The main ingredient in this chocolate chip granola bar recipe is oats. Oats provide soluble fiber known to help support healthy cholesterol levels and blood pressure. Diets high in fiber also help keep you full longer, which supports a healthy weight. Foods like oats are considered a complex carbohydrate, which also help maintain steady blood sugars in those with diabetes.

Instead of using white sugar to sweeten these bars, I use a pure maple syrup and Medjool dates.

While maple syrup is still considered an “added sugar“, there are some known benefits to the components of pure maple syrup. For example, maple syrup has antioxidants and trace minerals. It also has a slightly lower glycemic index than sugar. Still, like all other added sugars, you should use maple syrup in moderation.

And finally, these homemade chocolate chip granola bars have almonds and peanut butter. Nuts and nut butters contain healthy mono- and polyunsaturated fats that may help you lose weight and body fat, and improve insulin resistance.

Ingredients

Old-Fashioned Oats– I love using old-fashioned oats in all of my no-bake and baked recipes that require oats. Since this no bake granola bar recipe is made using a food processor, the smaller oat flakes makes it easier to form the bars while squishing into your pan. You can also use quick-cooking oats.

Medjool Dates– dates add a naturally sweet touch along with fiber, potassium, folate and various other micronutrients.

Almonds– these add healthy monounsaturated fat adn a nice crunch to these chocolate chip granola bars.

Peanut Butter– sticky peanut butter helps bind these granola bars together and provided nutrients to boot. You can use natural, creamy, crunchy, or whatever type you prefer.

Maple Syrup– adding just enough maple syrup adds more sweetness and consistency to these soft adn chewy granola bars.

Cinnamon– this is a warm and wonderful spice that adds a little something to these homemade granola bars. A little goes a long way. You can even try other spices like nutmeg or apple pie spice.

Salt– a little bit of salt is added to contrast with the sweetness in these. Who doesn’t love a good sweet and salty combo?

Chocolate Chips– To make this recipe dairy-free, use dairy-free chocolate chips. I used Nestle Toll House allergen-free semi-sweet chocolate chips* for this recipe. Another great allergen and vegan-friendly brand is Enjoy Life*.

chewy granola bar recipe

How To Make Chewy Granola Bars

This chewy granola bar recipe is extremely simple to prepare. Especially if you have a food processor to do all the work for you! If not, you’ll just get a little arm workout when it comes time to mix.

Here are the step-by-step instructions to make this easy snack.

Step 1: Prep Your Pan

First, get your 8×8-inch pan ready by lining the bottom with parchment paper or wax paper. You won’t need to use any non-stick spray or rub it with butter or oil. The paper alone with prevent any sticking.

Step 2: Time To Process!

Next, add all of your ingredients to your food processor.

Pulse the ingredients on and off until the mixture is combined but not overly processed. I like mine still slightly hearty with little pea-sized chunks of almonds.

Alternatively, if you don’t own a food processor, you can use a large mixing bowl and hand mix everything. Make sure to chop the almonds if you don’t want them whole. You’ll also want to finely mince the dates so they are incorporated evenly when mixing.

Step 3: Add-Ins

After processing (or mixing), this is the time to add in any extra ingredients you’d like. After all, this is the perfect base granola bar recipe for the chewy granola bar of your dreams! Some add-in examples include:

  • Chocolate chips
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Dried fruits

This step should be done by hand since you don’t want these ingredients chopped to bits by your food processor.

Step 4: Press It

Pour your chewy granola bar mixture into your prepared 8×8 pan. Make sure to spread it out into an even thickness by gently pressing down with a spatula or your hands.

Then they’re ready to eat! You can let them set longer (~30 minutes) in the fridge.

FAQ for Chewy Chocolate Chip Granola Bars

How thick are these granola bars?

If you like thick granola bars, this isn’t your recipe. These bars are about 1/2-inch thick after spreading. This is why I used an 8×8 inch pan. A pan any larger and they’ll be entirely too thin and you’ll have a difficult time spreading them. After setting for a bit, they are the perfect consistency. Not at all hard, but delightfully chewy.

Can I add or omit ingredients?

Yes. I encourage you to add or take away whatever ingredients you like. This chocolate chip granola bar recipe is a wonderful base for your perfect granola bar concoction. Have fun with it and get the kids involved. See some of the suggestions in the recipe “Notes” for inspiration.

How do I store these chewy chocolate chip granola bars?

If you have any leftover granola bars, wrap each bar in plastic wrap or wax paper and store them in an airtight container.

How long do chewy granola bars last?

These bars will keep for up to one week at room temperature in an airtight container.

If you don’t plan on eating them all, you can also individually wrap them in plastic wrap and store them in an air-tight container in the freezer. This will extend their shelf life to up to 2 months. Just make sure to defrost them at room temp for an hour or two before eating.

Other Recipes Featuring the Goodness of Oats

chewy granola bars

Chewy Granola Bar Recipe

This is the perfect base for your go-to granola bar creation. Mix in some other optional ingredients to add more variety and fun. This is a kid-friendly recipe as well once it comes time for the add-ins. These no-bake chewy granola bars are perfect for anyone new to making granola bars. The customizations are ENDLESS!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Course Breakfast, Snack
Cuisine American
Servings 12 bars
Calories 282 kcal

Equipment

  • 1 Food Processor optional

Ingredients
  

  • 1 ½ cups oatmeal
  • 8 oz medjool dates about 10 dates
  • 2 oz almonds roasted and unsalted
  • 1 cup peanut butter creamy
  • ½ cup maple syrup
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp salt optional
  • ½ cup dairy-free chocolate chips I use Nestle Toll House Allergen Free semi-sweet chocolate chips

Instructions
 

  • Line an 8×8 inch square pan with wax paper or parchment paper.
  • Process all ingredients in a food processor until the mixture forms into a dough-like consistency. This is your base.
  • Pour the mixture into a large bowl and add your chocolate chips. Mix carefully by hand until the chocolate chips are incorporated well throughout the mixture. Add any other ingredients at this time if you wish (sprinkles, chopped nuts, etc.).
  • Press your granola bar mixture into the lined 8×8 inch square pan using your fingers or another sheet of wax paper.
  • Enjoy right away or refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to allow them to firm up more.

Notes

Additional Notes:
  • Other options to mix into the base after processing include chopped nuts, sunflower seeds, dried fruits such as raisins, carob chips, chopped dark chocolate bits or cocao nibs, etc.  
  • If you do not have a food processor, I suggest using quick oats in place of old-fashioned oats. They are smaller and will bind to the other ingredients better.
 
Nutrition Information Per 1 Bar Serving (Makes 12 bars): 
282 calories, 13 gm total fat, 2.6 gm saturated fat, 37 gm carbohydrates, 7 gm protein, 4 gm fiber, 199 mg sodium (only 93 mg sodium if not using the extra 1/2 tsp salt), 0 mg cholesterol.  
Keyword bars, dairy-free, easy, gluten-free, granola, no bake, oatmeal, snacks

Share with me: If you try these chewy chocolate chip granola bars, let me know what you think by commenting below. Did you use any add-ins or substitutions?

Feel free to pin this chewy chocolate chip granola bar recipe to save and share with others!

chocolate chip granola bar recipe pin

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