Granola bars are a sneaky and deceitful snack. There is a common misconception that they are healthy. But why wouldn't people think that? They're full of oats, fruit, nuts and other things that are supposed to be good for us, right? And the packages often tell us they're healthy.

I was talking healthy eating with a friend a few weeks ago and he said he had his healthy days when he tried to stay on track. "I ate a granola bar today," he said. Hate to break it to you, folks. You've been duped. More than likely that granola bar is doing more harm than good.

Don't get me wrong, not all granola bars are bad. There are some brands that do it right. But the most popular brands (i.e. Nature Valley, Quaker) are so full of sugar and other gunk, they can't really be classified as "healthy." And, at that point, what's the purpose in even eating them? You might as well just chow down on the junk food you're really craving.

I do love the portability and convenience of granola bars. I used to keep a few with me all the time for a snack on the go. (I get hungry often. The price I pay for my fitness schedule. It's annoying.) But when I started getting more educated on the contents of foods, granola bars went bye-bye from my diet.

Until now...

Earlier this week I was inspired to create my own granola bar recipe. So here it is! These honey oat granola bars use simple and nutritious ingredients so you can enjoy them for that quick snack on the go, and not feel bad about it. And, guess what. They're delicious!

Eat up! They'll do your body good!

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~ Ingredients ~

Makes 12 bars

3½ c. rolled oats
2 Tbsp. whole wheat flour
¼ c. applesauce (all natural, no sugar added)
½ c. water
3 Tbsp. honey (I used Isaiah's Garden Pure Honey)
1 Tbsp. ground flaxseed
3 Tbsp. dried cranberries, no sugar added (or dried fruit of your choice)
3 Tbsp. chopped almonds, plain all natural (or nut of your choice)

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~ Directions ~

Preheat oven to 325°.

In a medium-sized bowl, combine oats, flour, honey, flaxseed, and applesauce. Mix well. Add the water and mix until the mixture becomes dough-like.

Finally, mix in the dried cranberries and chopped almonds.

Separate the "dough" into twelve servings and shape to form bars. Place bars on a greased baking sheet.

Bake for 30 minutes, or until the bars are lightly browned. Remove and let cool.

These are great on there own or topped with a little bit of jam! And they are so much more nutritious than many of the popular brand granola bars sold in your local grocery store. And you have the benefit of minimal whole ingredients so you actually know what you're putting in your body.

Cheers to your health!