I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one with a fondness for anything that comes out of the Smitten Kitchen. (Beware: clicking on either of those links will begin a new obsession for you!)
After an unexpected snow day in Austin, TX, I made it home from work a little early with just enough time to throw something fun together before preparing a heart- and hand-warming soup for dinner. These granola bars were just the thing. In fact, I didn't even take the time to read the entire recipe before tossing remnant trail mixes and such into a bowl. As I went along, thankfully, I had all the necessary ingredients to hold the bars together, but here's the fun part.
These granola bars (of the thick and chewy variety, I'm already a fan) can handle up to three cups of random goodies. We're talking dried fruits, seeds, nuts, wheat germ, and yes, chocolate chips. If you're anything like me, you can open your pantry at any given time to find five separate batches of different trail mixes (thank you, bulk bins).
I had everything from the Women's Organic Vitality Mix (cranberries, soy beans, sunflower seeds, and dark chocolate) to the Student Mix (almonds, peanuts, pumpkin seeds, raisins), and more. I wound up with two cups of goodies and 1/3 cup of all-natural peanut butter to help glue it all together.
The result? Tantalizingly delicious breakfast bars that stuck together perfectly. Seriously, my other forays into granola bar-making have not gone nearly as well; but this is a recipe that works.
Since this is Deb's recipe, which she adapted from another site, I'll just give you the link and offer you one good piece of advice: throw in everything but the kitchen sink.