Vegan Granola Bars

By Alexandra Caspero on September 5, 2022
Chewy, chocolaty and delicious! Customizable depending on how you like your granola bars.
Makes 9-12 bars

DIY healthy vegan granola bars! A mix of rolled oats, dried fruit, almond butter and whatever other mix ins you want. Perfect as a snack bar or a vegan breakfast bar.

Just in time for back to school, homemade vegan granola bars! These easy bars are perfect for lunchboxes and after school snacks. If you like my triple chocolate granola bars, almond joy granola bars and dark chocolate almond oatmeal bars, then I know you will love these too.

I obviously have a thing for chocolate when it comes to granola bars, but the beauty of these bars is that they are so customizable! Using whatever dried fruit, nut or chocolate you have on hand. Try white chocolate, macadamia nuts and dried cranberries or raisins, walnuts and dark chocolate. Any combination you like together will work in these bars.

Bowl of ingredients for vegan granola bars

Ingredients for Vegan Granola Bars

These bars couldn’t be easier and you only need a handful of ingredients

  • Rolled oats— old fashioned oats are best here, but instant oats will work in a pinch. Steel cut oats won’t work in this granola bar recipe.
  • Mix-In’s of choice— I like chocolate chips and raisins, but any mix in you like will work in these
  • Cinnamon and Vanilla— these make the bars taste more complex and give them additional flavor.
  • Brown rice syrup— for my vegan friends, brown rice syrup is the best liquid sweetener option. Most granola bar recipes use honey, but as there is some debate as to whether or not honey is considered vegan, I didn’t include it. Maple syrup and agave syrup are too runny and won’t work in this recipe.
  • Almond butter— You could use peanut butter in these, but I like the more mild flavor of almond butter as I find that peanut butter overpowers the taste of the other ingredients.
two granola bars on a plate

Variations and Substitutions

As mentioned above, I don’t recommend swapping in maple syrup or agave for this. If you can’t find or don’t want to use brown rice syrup, then honey is a good alternative.

While I love raisins and chocolate chips, any mix in will work in these vegan granola bars! Here are other variation ideas:

  • Cranberry Bars: dried cranberries, macadamia nuts and white chocolate
  • Trail Mix: Chopped peanuts, raisins and mini chocolate candy
  • PB&J: dried cherries, peanut butter and chopped peanuts
  • Allergy-Free: Tahini or Sunbutter for the peanut butter

I know tahini might sounds strange, but it’s fantastic paired with chocolate! My salted tahini chocolate chip cookies are a very popular recipe.

close up of vegan granola bars

How to make these granola bars

  1. Preheat the oven

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
    Line an 8×8 baking dish with parchment paper letting excess hang over sides. This helps with easy removal from the pan. Lightly coat with cooking spray and set aside.

  2. Mix together the dry ingredients

    Place oats, dried fruit/choc chips mix ins, cinnamon, and salt in a large bowl.

  3. Warm the syrup and almond butter together

    In a small bowl, add brown rice syrup and nut butter. Place in the microwave for 30 seconds, stirring to create a liquid thin enough to pour. Add vanilla to the nut butter mixture, then pour over the oat bowl and mix until combined.

  4. Place granola in prepared pan and bake

    Scrape granola mixture into the prepared pan and press granola mixture firmly into the pan. Bake for 25 – 30 minutes, until bars are lightly browned around the edges. 

  5. Cool and slice

    Remove from the oven, then lightly press them down again. Let cool completely, then remove and slice. 

More Vegan Bar Recipes

If you try these vegan granola bars, make sure to come back to leave a rating and a comment. Seeing you make my recipes makes my day and your feedback helps other readers!

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two granola bars side by side

Vegan Granola Bars

  • Author: Alex Caspero
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 912 bars 1x
  • Category: snack,

Description

DIY healthy vegan granola bars! A mix of rolled oats, dried fruit, almond butter and whatever other mix ins you want. Perfect as a snack bar or a vegan breakfast bar.


  • Author: Alex Caspero
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 912 bars 1x
  • Category: snack,
  • Author: Alex Caspero
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 912 bars 1x
  • Category: snack,
Scale

Ingredients

  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup dried fruit, nuts, chocolate chips and/or other add-ins of choice
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup brown rice syrup*
  • 1/2 cup almond butter**
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Line an 8×8 baking dish with parchment paper letting excess hang over sides. This helps with easy removal from the pan. Lightly coat with cooking spray and set aside.
  3. Place oats, dried fruit/choc chips mix ins, cinnamon, and salt in a large bowl. 
  4. In a small bowl, add brown rice syrup and nut butter. Place in the microwave for 30 seconds, stirring to create a liquid thin enough to pour. Add vanilla to the nut butter mixture, then pour over the oat bowl and mix until combined.  (Warning if adding chocolate chips: if rice syrup gets too hot in the microwave as it will melt the chips (which isn’t a bad thing but a visual thing)
  5. Scrape granola mixture into the prepared pan and press granola mixture firmly into the pan. Bake for 25 – 30 minutes, until bars are lightly browned around the edges. 
  6. Remove from the oven, then lightly press them down again. Let cool completely, then remove and slice. 

Notes

*To keep these vegan, I recommend using brown rice syrup over maple syrup. Maple syrup is more sticky than brown rice syrup and the bars won’t be as solid. If you don’t want to keep them vegan, then you can use honey.

**I like the almond butter best in these bars as peanut butter is a little overpowering. However, peanut butter can absolutely be used!

25 minutes will make a firm chewy bar. The longer you cook it the crispier they will get. I recommend storing them in the fridge or freezer. They will get sticky when they sit out for a few days if you aren’t adding the nut butter.

The granola bars will keep for 1 week stored in an airtight container or plastic bag on the counter with pieces of parchment or waxed paper between layers to prevent sticking. To freeze, wrap them individually in parchment or waxed paper then place in a freezer safe bag for up to 2 months. 

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Meet Alex Caspero

Alex Caspero is a Registered Dietitian, New York Times Bestselling Plant-Based Chef and mom of two. She aims to cut through the nutrition noise by providing real-life, nourishing tips for body and mind. Learn more about Alex.

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    1. Lisa
      September 10, 2022 AT 5:23 pm

      So, I’m not clear on the comment that using maple syrup makes then not vegan, please elaborate.
      Also, if I use maple syrup, the bars won’t be as solid because maple syrup is too sticky?
      Thanks!

      1. Alex
        September 10, 2022 AT 5:30 pm

        Ah, sorry– if you use honey they aren’t vegan. Maple syrup is of course, but they will be pretty stick and not as solid as using brown rice sugar.

    2. Margie
      September 8, 2022 AT 7:14 pm

      Even though there are a wide range of ingredients to use, and they all look delicious, wouldn’t you say they are high in carbs?

      1. Alex
        September 10, 2022 AT 5:33 pm

        Yes, but I don’t think that is a downside.