Sunday, January 10, 2010

Super Simple Crunchy Oat Bars

With only 4 main ingredients these are the easiest homemade Crunchy Oat Bars (and of course delicious). They whipped up in a matter of 15 minutes and need only 30 minutes of bake time. When I saw this recipe the first time I knew it would be easy enough to add all sorts of goodies to the simple base. I decided to try a couple different additions this first time around. The first batch were made with a special friend in mind- I planned to make these as a part of a care package, and he loves coconut so these are Cranberry-Coconut Crunchy Oat Bars (these are the bars featured in the photo). The second batch I made for myself and they happen to include apples and my favorite, cinnamon. 
As I cleaned up the kitchen, surrounded by the faint scent the cinnamon and coconut baking in the oven, I found myself conjuring up different variations to try for next time.

Super Simple Crunchy Oat Bars
325 degrees, 30 minutes

2 sticks of butter
1 cup brown sugar
2 TBS corn syrup
3 cups Quick Oats

On the stove top, use a pot to melt butter, adding sugar and corn syrup.
Once ingredients are blended, turn heat off and mix in oats.

This is your base.

Grease a cookie sheet (I lined mine with parchment paper-a baker's best friend). Press mixture into the cookie sheet, flattening with a spatula.

Cranberry-Coconut Variation
Add: 3/4 cup dried coconut
         1/2 cup dried cranberries

Apple-Cinnamon Variation
Add: 1/2 apple, chopped
        1 tsp white sugar  
1 to 2 TBS cinnamon (depending on how cinnamon-y you like them)

*Feel free to add more of the 'extra' ingredients if you wanted more of the flavor to pop. You just want to make sure there is enough of the base to keep the ingredients together.