No Bake Granola Bars: Nut Free, Chewy and Delicious

These deliciously chewy No Bake Granola Bars are just the perfect snack for school lunches. They come together in no time at all. These nut free muesli bars stick together perfectly – just follow my tips and tricks included in the blog post below. They are made from the goodness of oats, seeds and dried fruits.

Who doesn’t love a granola bar? And these ones are an absolute winner. They’re packed with delicious, wholesome ingredients such as oats, pepitas, sunflower seeds and sesame seeds and are delicately flavoured with orange zest and cinnamon. And they’re much lower in added sugar than a lot of granola/muesli bar recipes. So they’re just great to pack in the lunchbox.

no bake nut free muesli bars

Not only are these chewy No Bake Granola Bars nut free (which means they are school lunchbox and allergy friendly) they are also vegetarian and dairy free too so they are perfect if you have allergies or are lactose intolerant. 

Ingredients and Substitutions 

These no bake muesli bars are made with easily sourced ingredients. You will find quantity information in the recipe card below. To make these nut free granola bars you will need:

  • Quick oats – these are stocked in most supermarkets. They’re smaller in size than traditional rolled oats and they quickly absorb liquid. I use quick oats as they are smaller so the bars stick together more easily and the cut neatly. You can substitute regular rolled oats if this is what you have. I would recommend to blitz these a little in a food processor to break them down a little to help the bars hold together once they are formed.
  • Wheat germ – will help bind these No Bake Granola Bars together. You can find wheat germ in the cereal section of your supermarket or use oat flour or ground flaxseeds. You could also use almond flour however then you may not be able to send these to school depending on your school policies and nut allergies that may be present in the classroom. 
  • Sultantas or raisins – these are dried grapes and add a lovely chew to these muesli bars. 
  • Dried cranberries – add another element to these granola bars but you can just use more raisins or sultanas if you do not have these. 
  • Pepitas – packed full of nutrients and minerals like zinc, iron and copper. If you do not have pepitas you can replace with more sunflower seeds.
  • Sunflower seeds – packed with Vitamin E and minerals and are a great source of healthy fats. Sunflower seeds have a mild nutty flavour. You could substitute with more pepitas or an equal quantity of any other seeds. If not sending to school or you are able to send nut products to school you may wish to replace with nuts. Almonds or walnuts would work well, just chop them up first so they are nice and small.
  • Sesame seeds – if you have allergies you can substitute with flaxseed or chia seeds or you can omit these.  
  • Cinnamon – adds a gentle warmth and sweetness to these nut free muesli bars.
  • Orange zest – you can omit this if you like but I love the extra flavour that this brings to the bars so I would recommend including. 
  • Coconut oil – will help keep the muesli bars solid and bound together when cooled. It is important to store the muesli bars in the fridge and send in the lunchbox with a well insulated lunch bag to ensure that the muesli bars hold together throughout the day. You can substitute the coconut oil for butter in this recipe as it also has a solid state. 
  • Honey – honey is an important binding ingredient in this recipe. Together with the brown sugar, the honey is part of the glue that helps stick the bars together. You can substitute for Rice Malt Syrup to make a vegan option if you prefer.
  • Brown sugar – as with the honey, this is important ingredient to bind the no bake muesli bars together. 

No Bake Nut Free Granola Bars

How to make the granola bars

In a medium bowl combine all the ingredients except for the brown sugar, honey and coconut oil. Stir thoroughly to combine and make a well in the middle of the ingredients. Grease and line a slice pan.

Process shot of mixing bowl containing muesli bar ingredients and then these ingredients mixed together

Next, add the coconut oil, honey and sugar into a small saucepan and whisk together gently over medium-low heat. Once the sugar has dissolved and combined with the honey and oil, simmer for around 5 minutes gently whisking the mixture together until a thick and glossy caramel syrup has formed. 

Process shot of making the caramel syrup to bind the muesli bars together

Once the syrup has thickened, remove from the heat and immediately pour into the dry ingredients, quickly stirring through the ingredients with a spatula to combine. When the mixture has come together spoon into the prepared slice pan then spread out evenly and push the mixture firmly with the back of a spatula to compress as much as possible. 

Chill for around 4 hours before cutting into bars. 

How to get the granola bars to stick together 

A lot of people are concerned with one thing when it comes to making homemade muesli bars….how to make sure they stick together. And with my recipe you won’t have to worry, if you follow my three tips to avoid crumbly muesli bars:

  1. The first tip is to develop thick caramel syrup which you can achieve by slowly whisking the sugar, honey and coconut oil over a medium low heat. If you try heating too quickly or for not long enough the syrup won’t set and the muesli bars will crumble so it’s important to take your time with this step. The pictures above will help show you what the caramel looks like.
  2. Ensure that the ingredients you are using are not too big. I like to use quick oats over regular oats as they bind together more easily. Also, you will need to finely dice any larger ingredients like dried apricots or dried apple.
  3. Pack the mixture well with the back of a spatula or to ensure the mix is as compact as possible then chill the mixture before cutting. 

close up image of delicious no bake granola bars

Storing the granola bars

These No Bake Nut Free Granola Bars store exceptionally well in the fridge or freezer. Cut into bars or bites and store in layers separated by baking paper in an airtight container. 

Looking for more no bake granola bars? 

 

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No Bake Granola Bars

No Bake Granola Bars: Nut Free, Chewy and Delicious

  • Author: Bernadette - Goodie Goodie Lunchbox
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Total Time: 4 hours 15 minutes
  • Yield: 16 granola bars 1x
  • Category: Muesli Bars
  • Method: Stove Top; Refrigerator
  • Cuisine: Western

Description

Who loves no bake recipes? Well you will just love this No Bake Granola Bar recipe! They are perfect for school lunches as they are nut free and come together in no time at all. These nut free muesli bars stick together perfectly – just follow my tips and tricks with step by step images included in the blog above. They are made from the goodness of oats, seeds and dried fruits and are lower in added sugar. They are dairy free and easily can be made vegan.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 1/2 cups (150g) quick oats
  • 1/2 cup (45g) wheat germ
  • 1/4 cup (30g) pepitas
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds (25g)
  • 1/4 cup (40g) raisins
  • 1/4 cup (30g) cranberries
  • 1 tsp orange zest
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 100g coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup (45g) brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup honey

Instructions

  1. Grease and line a 27.5cm x 17.5cm x 3.5cm slice pan
  2. In medium bowl combine the oats, wheat germ, seeds, raisins, cranberries, orange zest and cinnamon.
  3. In a saucepan melt the coconut oil, honey and brown sugar together over a medium heat, stirring gently with a whisk until the sugar has dissolved and the ingredients combine. This will take around three minutes.
  4. Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer for a further three-five minutes whisking to form a thick caramel syrup.
  5. Once the caramel syrup has formed, immediately add to the oat mixture and mix quickly until well combined.
  6. Press the mixture into the prepared slice pan and cool in the fridge for around 4 hours
  7. One chilled cut into 16 pieces to make granola bars or 32 pieces for bite-sized pieces.

Notes

Read the full blog post for step by step pictures and tips for how to make sure the granola bars will hold together.

Keywords: Muesli Bars; No Bake Muesli Bars; Chewy Muesli Bars; Granola Bars; Nut Free Granola Bars; Chewy Granola Bars; No Bake Granola Bars

I hope you love my latest granola bar recipe. Remember if you make these please share with me on socials! I love to hear from you. You can find me on insta or facebook. And as always, if you love these recipes please rate them! It really helps others find my recipes.

Happy lunching, 
Bernadette x

 

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