Cardamom, Hazelnut-Cherry Granola Bars

By • February 2, 2011 • 17 Comments


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Author Notes: Granola bar inspired after reading a couple online recipes, I modified, using a few of my favorite flavors for a sweet, tart, nutty taste, with a burst of browned butter in every bite. In addition, the star ingredient, cardamom gives a unique spiced flavor and leaves your kitchen with a wonderful fragrant aroma! A great on-the-go snack.lapadia

Makes 18 bars

Browned Butter

  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter
  1. Heat a thick-bottomed saucepan on medium low heat, add 8 tablespoons sliced up butter - melt and cook, check often, giving the pan a shake; the milk solids will rise to the top and start to foam up. Check for browned specks to form at the bottom; the butter will start to turn golden and will be done when it has turned a medium dark and gives off a nutty aroma. Move the saucepan to a cool surface and strain out the solids. Let sit until needed.

Granola Bar

  • 2 cups old fasioned rolled oats
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons ground cardamom seed (Penzey's)
  • 1/2 cup chopped hazelnuts
  • 1/2 cup dried cherries – 1/4 cup of them chopped finely
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 fresh ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon sea salt
  • 5 tablespoons agave nectar or honey
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • Browned butter, see above
  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Line a 9 inch square pan with parchment or heavy duty foil, extending it over the sides; press to form into the pan.
  2. Grease the bottom and up the sides a quarter inch with 1 tablespoon browned butter.
  3. Mix the first 7 ingredients in a wide bowl – set aside until needed.
  4. Heat the remaining browned butter, sugar and agave or honey until it begins to boil and foam. Pour over the dry ingredients, mix, saturate and coat throughout - the bars will have a hard time holding together if not.
  5. Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan; using a spatula, press lightly, but enough to ensure the mixture is holding together - spread evenly.
  6. Bake 45 minutes, or until top turns golden brown. Note: if overcooked you will end up with granola clusters rather than bars when cut.
  7. Begin cooling in the pan - on a rack for at least 30 minutes. Lift out of the pan, using the extended foil and place back on the rack until the granola is set.
  8. Transfer to a cutting board, peel off the parchment of foil and cut into bars - or squares if you prefer.
  9. Store in an airtight container at room temperature or freeze; these bars freeze well.

Comments (17) Questions (0)

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10 months ago Sarah Gillis

These are absolutely delicious and a nice shift from the usual granola bar. I added 1/2 tsp cardamom, not 1-1/2, and it was perfect. I baked them for 35 minutes. They were initially a little crispier than I'd hoped but after a few days, and a heat wave, and they softened up nicely. My coworkers LOVED them! Thanks :)

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10 months ago lapadia

Wow Sarah, I'm thrilled you enjoyed these bars! I first created them for F52's cardamom contest, and so I made sure that ingredient stood out :)!! Thanks for sharing your "tweaks."

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10 months ago em-i-lis

Emily is a trusted source on General Cooking.

These look scrumptious, l!

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10 months ago lapadia

Thanks for checking them out, Emily!

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10 months ago boulangere

Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

These are THE BOMB!

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10 months ago lapadia

:)

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11 months ago boulangere

Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

OMG! Made these today at work, and they are absolutely divine! They're going on the regular rotation. Thank you so much!

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11 months ago lapadia

So happy to hear this, Cynthia! Was a first try at granola bars...

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almost 3 years ago Susan

I'll have to get my hands on some coconut-palm sugar! They need to be a little less delicious - I am working on my third granola bar of the day right now. Thanks for such a great recipe.

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almost 3 years ago lapadia

:) :)

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almost 3 years ago Susan

I made this recipe today and it was delicious! I just wonder if you could get away with cutting or eliminating the brown sugar. What do you think? Is there a substitute that would still let it stick together but leave the flavor a little more granola-y and less sweet?

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almost 3 years ago lapadia

Thanks so much for your recipe report, Susan! RE: the brown sugar, hmmm, I haven't tried any substitutes, but am wondering about cutting the amount in half and maybe a tablespoon extra of butter (?), another thought...I sometimes use coconut palm sugar in recipes (but not this one) and it has never seemed quite as sweet. I have some time on my hands today, so I am going to try that..will get back to you. :)

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almost 3 years ago lapadia

I'm back! Made this recipe, cut the brown sugar out, used 2 tbls coconut palm sugar, bars held together nicely, used the full 8 tbls of butter in the bar...feel cutting the brown sugar altogether should work. Messaged you with other thoughts and ideas :)

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almost 3 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

These sound delicious, I am going to have to make these my daughter and kids have granola bars almost every day.

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almost 3 years ago lapadia

Thanks and enjoy, sdebrango!

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about 3 years ago gingerroot

Yum! These are beautiful and sound delicious. I am saving this and can't wait to try it! I wonder if you could use parchment instead of foil?

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about 3 years ago lapadia

Thanks! Hmmm, parchment vs foil - lining the pan makes it easier to get the granola sheet out, easier to cut out of the pan. The oven temp is certainly low enough, I suppose if you could get the parchment to mold into the baking pan it could work...let me know if you try it that way! btw- love your chicken recipe...and what a mouthwatering photo!