Throughout middle and high school, I practically subsisted on Nature Valley's crisp and crunchy Oats 'n Honey granola bars. To this day, a mere glimpse of the bold green wrapper gets my stomach grumbling. So when I stumbled upon a recipe hack for the snacktime staple, I knew I had to try it for myself.
My first attempt turned out a batch that, while enticing, wasn't quite right; my roommates happily scarfed them down, but to my nostalgic palate, they were slightly too soft, not quite salty enough, and tasted a little raw. Thankfully, with a few tweaks — notably, toasting the oats and swapping out half the honey for brown sugar for a deeper flavor and a crisper, toastier texture — they're everything my teenage self could've wished for. Even better, they're slightly less sweet, leaving my slightly more sophisticated mid-20s persona pleased as punch as well.
Get the recipe, and start snacking.
1 1/2 cups (5 3/4 ounces) rolled oats Makes eight granola bars.
2 tablespoons neutral oil, such as canola or grapeseed
Heaping 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
2 1/2 tablespoons honey
2 1/2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup (3/4 ounce) crispy rice cereal
3 tablespoons (1 3/8 ounces) cornmeal
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 cups (5 3/4 ounces) rolled oats
Makes eight granola bars.