M&M Granola Bars

I love these simple and sweet homemade bars for so many reasons!  They are so much better than store bought when made in your own kitchen.  Kids love to help make them.  And lastly they are great for road trips, the ball park, or by the pool!  

  • 2 1/2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup peanuts, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips, divided
  • 1/4 cup M&M’s


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line an 8” or 9” square baking dish with parchment paper.  Lightly grease with nonstick cooking spray.  Place oats on a rimmed baking sheet and toast for 8 minutes.  Place nuts and oats in large bowl.  

Add honey, butter and brown sugar to a small sauce pan.  Cook over medium heat until the butter melts and sugar dissolves.  Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter, vanilla and salt.  

Pour peanut butter mixture over the oat/nut mixture.  Stir to combine.  Make sure all oats are coated in the peanut butter mixture.  Let cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes.  Stir in half of the mini chocolate chips.  Spread mixture into prepared baking dish.  Use a rubber spatula to firmly press into the pan.  Sprinkle remaining chocolate chips and M&M’s over the bars and gently press into the top.  

Chill for 2 hours.  Lift the parchment from the pan and cut the bars.  

(Ashley Madden Rowton is a wife, mom and published cookbook author who lives in Minden, La.)