I’ve been on a pumpkin roasting kick lately and am vowing to eat as much pumpkin as possible while it’s in season. I saw this recipe adapted on Brown Eyed Baker’s site, only she used cinnamon chips in her version. I stuck with the original, courtesy of Two Peas and Their Pod. I doubled the recipe and made them in a 13 x 9 inch brownie pan, but if you do so, I wouldn’t double the chocolate chips. Doing so makes them very chocolately (which I don’t mind, but you might) and overpowers the pumpkin a bit. I had trouble cutting mine, which is why they’re more squares than bars, but I put them in the refrigerator which helped them harden up nicely.
All in all, I was really pleased with this recipe. Johnny took some to work and his colleagues liked them as well, though they suggested adding fruit and nuts to the mix to make them more like traditional granola bars. Hmmm…
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Granola Bars
3 1/4 cups old fashioned oats
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
¾ cup brown sugar
½ cup pumpkin puree
¼ cup applesauce
¼ cup honey
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray an 8 by 8 baking pan with cooking spray and set aside. In a large bowl, whisk oats, spices, and salt together. Set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk brown sugar, pumpkin, applesauce, honey, and vanilla extract until smooth. Pour over oats and stir well, until all of the oats are moist. Stir in chocolate chips.
Evenly press oat mixture into prepared pan. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown. The pumpkin keeps the bars moist, so make sure they are golden and set-you don’t want them to be under baked. Remove from oven and let cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes.
Using a sharp knife, cut into bars. Remove from pan and let cool completely.
Makes 10-12 granola bars