These granola rounds are something I make pretty regularly, so I thought I'd share them. They're hardy and hearty. I love them so much that I've begun to feel vaguely uneasy if there isn't a gallon Ziploc bag full of these hanging out in the freezer -- I may have yet to acquire the recommended amount of water in case of an earthquake, but I usually have enough granola to feed myself and a select few for approximately...36 hours.
Granola bars are a wonderful thing to make yourself because store-bought brands are often extremely sugary. My fervent love for Trader Joe's ebbs (or flows? Which is it?) when it comes to their granola / cereal bar offerings. Even some flavors of KIND bars were called out by the FDA for not being as healthy as they claim to be.
BUT there is no kitchen task I dislike more or fail at with greater frequency than cutting a pan of granola bars into rectangles, despite reading and attempting to execute so many granola bar cutting tips from cooking blogs and their reader comments sections. The last time a pan of potential granola bars was reduced to a pan of decidedly not granola bars, instead of salvaging the granola as I normally would, my occasional foray into theatrics had me very ceremoniously tipping the entire pan of perfectly good granola crumbles into the trash. Then and there I decided, no more cutting granola bars, ever (I also said this in a Southern accent to nobody in particular while gripping a dirty, mangy carrot). This all is a very circuitous way of saying: If you bake your granola bars in muffin tins, you won't ever have to play granola bar cutting roulette again.
Great as weekday breakfasts, midday treats, airplane snacks, and weekend bike ride sustenance, these granola rounds do it all. The tahini, honey, pistachios, cherries, and chocolate can be swapped out for all kinds of other delicious things to make these vegan, nut-free, etc., but this combination is my favorite thus far.
Tahini, Pistachio and Chocolate (and Cherry!) Granola Rounds
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen
Makes 12 granola rounds
1 1/4 cups (130 gm) old-fashioned rolled oats
1/4 cup (30 gm) oat flour (you can make your own by finely grounding 1/4 cup of rolled oats)
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup (70 gm) dried unsweetened shredded coconut
1/3 cup (70 gm) uncooked millet
1/2 cup (70 gm) chopped dried cherries
1/2 cup (105 gm) dark chocolate chips
1 cup (145 gm) chopped pistachios
1/4 cup (75 gm) tahini
1/4 cup (50 gm) olive oil
1/4 cup (85 gm) honey
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a standard-sized, 12-well muffin tin with paper cups and set aside.
In a large bowl, combine oats, oat flour, salt, coconut, millet, dried cherries, chocolate and pistachios.
In a separate, small bowl, whisk together tahini, olive oil and honey until smooth. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients, and stir until thoroughly combined.
Distribute mixture evenly among the muffin tin wells, and then use the bottom of a 1/4 cup measuring cup or a spoon to press the mixture down firmly and evenly.
Bake for 25 to 27 minutes, until the tops are golden and the edges are light brown. Allow granola rounds to cool.
Granola rounds will keep at room temperature for up to a week in an airtight container, or, per Smitten Kitchen's tip, stored in the freezer until needed (they need to be out of the freezer for only about an hour to fully defrost, or you can take them out the night before you need them).