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Sam is a trusted home cook.
I'd be interested in this also. Most of the home-made ones turn out to be even more costly than the packaged ones.
Kristen W. is a trusted home cook.
Perhaps buying ingredients from stores that sell them in bulk bins could make it more cost efficient? (Sorry I don't have a recipe; I'd be interested in that too.)
this granola recipe is delicious, and although i don't know exactly how to make it into bars, I leave it in the pan for a while when I first take it out of the oven so that it hardens a little and I can make big chunks. Maybe a bag of this would work? The ingredients are pricey, but each recipe fills about three quart jars. You could also swap out the nuts and use peanuts instead of pecans if your son prefers, and that might even be cheaper. I've thought about stretching it a bit with some puffed kamut or puffed rice cereal, but haven't tried it yet. Add salt at the end to taste.
You could use the above recipe as inspiration but look around at your store's bulk bins for the cheapest options. Honey might be cheaper as a sweetener than pure maple syrup. As healthier kitchen says, peanuts could replace pecans (or almonds) or leave out the nuts. Add some flax seed, which is very cheap, for extra crunch and fiber. You might even add some peanut butter for the sticky texture in the bars your son likes...the key for the cost is to be flexible about the ingredients and to look around for the store with the best bin prices. Whole Foods is not too bad, actually, but in my area there is another store that is cheaper and has the same quality bulk items.
Look at "Sara's granola bars" too...the recipe also has rice crispier or puffed rice (generic fine!) which adds good texture. It isn't very similar to the nut bars because it contains dried fruit (expensive) but you could take the idea of rice puffs as a "filler" that is cheap and has a good texture.
Agave syrup is also usually cheaper than pure maple syrup, btw, and is an ex excellent sub for it.
Thanks all for the suggestions. And recipe
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Well played. You deserve a cookie.
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