What immediately sets these apart from other granola bars is, of course, that they are grain-free. No oats, no flakes, no puffs, and no cereals of any kind. Instead, the “granola” mixture is nuts, seeds and coconut. If you like, go 100% nuts (I find that easy to do on any given day :)) or 100% seeds (less expensive and allergy-friendly).
2 tablespoons flaxseed meal
¼ cup water
1 cup assorted nuts and/or seeds
½ cup unsweetened flake coconut
2 tablespoons creamy nut or seed butter (e.g., almond, sunflower, peanut)
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
Preheat oven to 325F. Grease, spray or line 8 cups of a standard size muffin tin.
In a medium bowl, combine the flax meal and water. Let stand 5 minutes.
Grind the nuts/seeds and coconut in a food processor until finely chopped (not too fine or powdery; you want an uneven chop similar to oats and cereal). Place in bowl with flax mixture, stirring to combine.
In a small saucepan, melt the nut/seed butter and syrup over low heat until melted. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and salt, then pour over nut mixture, stirring to coat.
Divide mixture evenly between prepare cups, tamping down into cups.
Bake in the preheated oven for 12-16 minutes until browned at edges and centers feel dry to the touch. Transfer tin to a cooling rack and cool for 10 minutes before removing from tin. Cool completely.
Storage: Store the cooled granola bars in an airtight container at room temperature for 3 days, refrigerator for 2 weeks or freezer for 3 months.
Sweetener Option: If not vegan, an equal amount of honey can be used in place of the maple syrup. Agave nectar is fine, too.