Chewy No Bake Granola Bars are here to save the day! Made with oats, peanut butter, and the mix-ins of your choice, they’re a healthy on-the-go breakfast or snack for growing kids, busy adults, and anyone (ahem, yours truly) who knows that hanger danger is real.

a close up of the BEST no bake granola bars with peanut butter and old fashioned oats

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Homemade no bake granola bars, you are my snacktime savior and hurried morning hero.

I think it’s time I shared your superpowers with the rest of the world.

In a world where we are all rushing to work, looking for healthy lunchbox and snack ideas, and desperately searching for a satisfying road trip snack that doesn’t leave florescent orange powder on your fingers, no bake granola bars are here to save the day (with these Quinoa Breakfast Bars as their trusty sidekick).

a stack of healthy No Bake Granola Bars without dates

5 Star Review

“OH MY GOSH!!!! These were seriously the best snack bars I’ve ever eaten. I just ate my 3rd bar for the day, and I need to seriously work on my self-control!”

— Sharice —

I first brought a batch of these easy homemade chewy granola bars on a ski trip years ago and they were an instant hit for several reasons.

  • No bake granola bars are part wholesome snack/part dessert (similar to these Healthy No Bake Cookies).
  • They’re a breeze to make. Just mix, press, and chill. No baking required!
  • They’re perfectly portable (as are these Healthy Pumpkin Bars). Wrap each bar individually and tuck them into your purse, workbag, lunchbox, or coat pocket (for quick, easy access).

My favorite part about no bake granola bars, however, is their endless versatility (just like my go-to base recipe for Energy Balls).

With all of the mix-in options, you’ll never get bored with this recipe, I promise.

stack of vegan no bake granola bars with peanut butter

How to Make No Bake Granola Bars Recipe

No bake granola bars are the healthy snack recipe you need when you want a sweet treat that’s also packed with healthy, wholesome, good-for-you ingredients.

Tip!

While these bars do offer healthy proteins and fats, for a high protein no bake granola bar, check out my Peanut Butter Protein Bars and Vegan Protein Bars, both of which incorporate protein powder.


The Ingredients

  • Quick Oats or Rolled Oats. Provide body, texture, and the right amount of chew to these easy homemade granola bars. (This Crock Pot Granola is my favorite way to enjoy oat-filled granola in a non-bar form.)

TIP!

For a more tender bar, use quick oats. For a bar with a little more chew, make no bake granola bars with old-fashioned rolled oats, which are heartier. For a finer texture, you can blitz rolled oats in the food processor a few times to break them down further (this essentially turns them into quick oats).

  • Ground Flaxseed. Adds protein and, when combined with the wet ingredients, becomes a glue-like binding agent that helps hold the bars together.
  • Wheat Germ. A superfood boost that adds folate, fiber, vitamin E, and other key nutrients to these no bake granola bars (as well as this Healthy Granola).

Substitution Tip

You can substitute the wheat germ for additional oats. Or for a fun texture twist, make the no bake granola bars with Rice Krispies in place of the wheat germ.

  • Nut Butter. For ease, I typically make these no bake granola bars with peanut butter, almond butter, cashew butter, or (for a nut-free version) sunflower seed butter all work well.

Ingredient Note

The brand and style of nut butter you choose will impact the consistency of the granola bars since some nut butters are thicker (or thinner) than others.

If your mixture seems too wet or too dry, adjust amounts of nut butter or oats accordingly until the right consistency is reached.

  • Honey. Sweetens the granola bars and helps bind the dry ingredients together.

Dietary Note

To make the no bake granola bars vegan, swap maple syrup for the honey. It is a great way to subtly change up the flavor of these no bake bars without losing sweetness too.

  • Vanilla. Enhances, deepens, and marries the flavors of the various granola bar ingredients together.
  • Cinnamon. For a little earthy spice and aroma that tastes fantastic with the nutty oats and maple syrup. (Or swap cinnamon for pumpkin pie spice and replicate the magic of these No Bake Pumpkin Energy Balls).
no bake granola bars made with healthy ingredients close up

No Bake Granola Bar Mix-In Ideas

If you’re wondering what mix-ins go with homemade granola bars, the answer is anything you love!

Here are a few options to consider along with my all-time favorite ingredient combination. Use up to 1 1/4 cups total.

  • Dried fruit, like cranberries, raisins, cherries, or apricots. Chop if larger than a dime.
  • Mini chocolate chips.
  • Toasted coconut.
  • Sunflower seeds, chia seeds, or hemp seeds.
  • Slivered almonds, chopped walnuts, pecans, or pistachios.

My Favorite Combo. 1/4 cup dried cranberries, 1/4 chopped dried cherries or raisins, 1/4 cup mini chocolate chips, 1/4 cup chopped pecans or almonds, and either 1/4 cup sunflower seeds or other nuts.

The Directions

a pan with peanut butter for making no bake granola bars
  1. In a saucepan on medium heat, warm the peanut butter, honey, and vanilla together until smooth.
adding nuts, dried cranberries, sunflower seeds, and chocolate chips to a bowl of spiced oats for granola bars
  1. In a separate bowl, combine the dry ingredients.
a bowl of homemade chewy granola bars ingredients mixed together
  1. Pour the peanut butter mixture over the dry ingredients and stir to combine.

TIP!

The mixture should be very thick and sticky (not thin or liquidy) and should easily hold together when pressed. 

  • If it seems too loose, add more oats till the desired consistency is reached.
  • If it’s too dry, drizzle in a bit more honey or maple syrup until the mixture clumps easily.
a pan of no bake granola bars with chocolate chips and nuts
  1. Press the mixture firmly and evenly into a parchment-lined pan. Refrigerate until set. Remove the bars from the pan, slice, and serve. ENJOY!

Storage Tips

  • To Store. Keep bars in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 weeks. Be sure to separate with layers of parchment paper or wax paper or they will stick together. You can also keep the bars, wrapped individually, at room temperature for a few days, though their texture will soften.
  • To Freeze. Individually wrap and place in freezer for several months. Defrost overnight in the refrigerator.

Storage Tips

I highly recommend storing these bars wrapped individually in plastic, not foil, to prevent them from sticking together. Plus, it makes them the perfect grab-and-go breakfast or snack.

healthy no bake granola bars with peanut butter and oats

What to Serve with No Bake Granola Bars

Recommended Tools to Make this Recipe

The Best Mixing Bowl Set

These quality Duralex glass mixing bowls are stackable to save cabinet space, and very durable and dishwasher-safe.

a close up of the BEST no bake granola bars with peanut butter and old fashioned oats

Did you make this recipe?

Let me know what you thought!

Leave a rating below in the comments and let me know how you liked the recipe.

No bake granola bars, you’re the hero we need (and deserve!).

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do No Bake Granola Bars Stick Together Without Dates?

Unlike no bake granola bars with dates (see these Vegan Protein Bars), this recipe uses maple syrup (or honey) and nut butter as the primary binding agents for the bars. This recipe was tested to get the ratios of the dry and sticky ingredients just right to ensure these no bake homemade granola bars hold their shape once chilled.

Are No Bake Granola Bars Gluten Free?

Yes. The recipe, as it is written, is gluten-free. However, I always recommend checking your labels, especially the oats, to ensure they were processed in a gluten free certified facility if you are particularly sensitive to gluten.

How to Reduce Sugar in Granola Bars?

Granola bars (especially these Healthy Granola Bars) are loaded with tons of healthy ingredients. If there’s one weakness they have, however, is their sugar content, typically made with brown sugar. If you’re looking to reduce the sugar content of this recipe, I would not suggest reducing any of the base ingredients (e.g. honey or maple syrup), as the bars will not hold together. Rather, I would select low-sugar mix-ins like nuts, seeds, or unsweetened coconut flakes and skip any chocolate or dried fruit with added sugars.

Can I Make the Sauce in the Microwave?

For these bars, yes you can. In a microwave-safe bowl or a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the honey and peanut butter. Melt gently and stir until smooth and combined. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract.

No Bake Granola Bars Video

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a close up of the BEST no bake granola bars with peanut butter and old fashioned oats

No Bake Granola Bars

5 from 6 votes
The best healthy, chewy no bake granola bars! Made with peanut butter, oats and the mix-ins of your choice. Perfect for kids and adults.

Prep: 20 mins
Total: 1 hr 20 mins

Servings: 12 bars

Ingredients
  

  • 3/4 cup creamy peanut butter or almond butter
  • 1/2 cup honey or pure maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups quick oats or rolled oats* (do not use instant oatmeal)
  • 1/4 cup ground flaxseed
  • 1/4 cup wheat germ or additional 2 tablespoons oats
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon or try 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 1/4 cups mix-ins of choice** dried cranberries or raisins, roughly chopped toasted nuts, chocolate chips, sunflower seeds, etc.

Instructions
 

  • Line an 8×8 inch baking pan with parchment paper or wax paper so that two sides overhang like handles.
  • In a small saucepan, heat the peanut butter and honey, whisking until smooth. Remove from the heat. Stir in the vanilla. Let cool for several minutes (especially if you are using chocolate chips, which will melt if the mixture is too warm).
  • In a large mixing bowl, whisk the oats, flaxseed, wheat germ, cinnamon, and salt. Roughly chop any mix-ins that are larger than a chickpea (you can also roughly chop them in a food processor), then stir into the oat mixture.
  • Pour the peanut butter mixture over the dry ingredients. With a wooden spoon or very sturdy spatula, stir to combine. The mixture will be very thick and a little tough to stir, but keep working patiently and you will get there. Once combined, the mixture should feel somewhat sticky, but not liquidy and should easily hold together when pressed. If it seems too sticky (this can vary based on your nut butter), add more oats. If it’s dry, drizzle in a bit more honey.
  • Press the mixture into the pan very firmly so that the bars stick together (to help, use the back of a large measuring cup or just got at it with your fingers). Refrigerate the no bake granola bars for 1 hour, to allow the bars to set.
  • Using the paper “handles,” lift the bars out of the pan onto a cutting board (if they are sticking to the pan at the edges, use a knife to loosen). Slice into bars of desired size (I do 1 row of 4 and 1 row of 3 for 12 bars total).

Notes

  • TO STORE: Keep bars in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 weeks. Be sure to separate with layers of parchment paper or wax paper or they will stick together. You can also keep the bars, wrapped individually, at room temperature for a few days, though their texture will soften.
  • TO FREEZE: Individually wrap and freeze for several months. Defrost overnight in the refrigerator.
  • *INGREDIENT NOTE: We prefer these bars with quick oats, as they are a little more tender (rolled oats are thicker and have more “chew.”) For a finer texture, you can blitz rolled oats in the food processor a few times to break them down further.
  • **MY FAVORITE MIX-IN COMBO: 1/4 cup dried cranberries, 1/4 chopped dried cherries or raisins, 1/4 cup mini chocolate chips, 1/4 cup chopped pecans or almonds, and either 1/4 cup sunflower seeds or additional nuts.

Nutrition

Serving: 1(of 12)Calories: 241kcalCarbohydrates: 34gProtein: 7gFat: 11gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 4gMonounsaturated Fat: 4gPotassium: 202mgFiber: 4gSugar: 22gVitamin A: 1IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 25mgIron: 1mg

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Erin Clarke

Hi, I'm Erin Clarke, and I'm fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food that's affordable, easy-to-make, and best of all DELISH. I'm the author and recipe developer here at wellplated.com and of The Well Plated Cookbook. I adore both sweets and veggies, and I am on a mission to save you time and dishes. WELCOME!

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18 Comments

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  1. Hi nice recepe!!
    Kindly let me know if theses bars can be stored at room temperature or it has to be stored in the fridge,

    1. I’m so glad you like the recipe, thank you! These bars should be stored in the refrigerator or individually wrapped and frozen (you’ll see this in the recipe step 6 too). They will be fine in the fridge for a week, or you can freeze them well-wrapped for 2 months.

  2. OH MY GOSH!!!! These were seriously the best snack bars I’ve ever eaten. I just ate my 3rd bar for the day, and I need to seriously work on my self control!  But man, yum yum and YUM!!  I will definitely make them again.  I’m becoming the biggest fan of your blog!  I’ve made multiple recipes of yours in the last month and I’ve loved ALL OF THEM!  We just had your cauliflower lentil red curry recipe a couple days ago and my husband couldn’t get enough!  Thanks for all your hard work in creating yummy healthy recipes!5 stars

    1. Sharice, I am so, so happy to hear that you enjoyed these bar so much, and some of my other recipes too! Your words truly mean a lot to me. :-)

    1. Hi Kristin, unfortunately, the oats are pretty critical to this recipe. I’d recommend doing a google search for Paleo granola bars to see what you can find!

  3. Hi Bonnie! Thank you for taking the time to report back. I’m happy you were able to figure it out. I hope you enjoy the recipe if you try it again!

  4. Very easy to make and changing the mix-ins to whatever suits me when I make these. Thanks for a very useful recipe.5 stars

  5. My whole family loves these even the daycare kids. They don’t last long when I make them. This is the best recipe I have found.5 stars

  6. My granola is too crumbly and wouldnt set, even after i added some more honey. Should i reduce the oatmeal a bit or reduce the mix-ins? Not sure what went wrong

    1. I’m sorry you to hear had trouble with the recipe, Lisa. I know it’s frustrating to try a new recipe and not have it turn out. I (and many other readers) have enjoyed them, so I really wish they would’ve been a hit for you too! It’s hard to say what went wrong without being in the kitchen with you. I wouldn’t recommend changing the recipe. I’ve tested it multiple times with no problems. I would make sure when heating the peanut butter and honey it is completely warm and mixed throughly before pouring over your mixture.