Whether you’re packing up lunches for school or headed out on a day of errands to be run these chocolate dipped s’mores granola bars are the bees knees!
We are big on finding ways to make lunch time special for our girls while they are at school. Not every day because I hate to break it to you, but I’m just not good at being a pinterest mom. I can’t look up cute things and constantly be making chalkboards for lunch boxes and surprises for their backpack, but Cade and I do like to leave little notes with a special something.
We’ve partnered up with Mom’s Best Cereals to show you what we are sending this year to remind the kids to think of our good memories from summer, but it’s time to work hard at school.
It’s funny how it happened, Cade and I were grocery shopping and I told him that although we are a big cereal eating family I’m sick to death of walking down the aisle full of sugar packed, artificial everything cereal boxes. So he found Mom’s Best Cereals which are completely transparent about what’s in the box, no hydrogenated bla bla bla, no synthetic colors and on and on. And then 2 1/2 weeks later we got an email to work together. I mean come on, could it have been any more perfect?!
Yes, they taste delicious. I know that’s what you were wondering. Sometimes the natural stuff tastes like cardboard, but we cross our hearts promise that a small switch to Mom’s best really is better for your family and you’ll still love the taste.
The girls love to get creative so I told them to pick two cereals and we would make granola bars for the first week of school. This is something we’ve found helps with the first week of school jitters too. They get busy with something fun, anticipate it in their lunch box and feel connected to us while at school all day which makes everything go better.
Honey Grahams and Crispy Cocoa Rice were chosen so almost immediately our oldest shouted out, can we make it into S’mores?! Heck yes!! This is your week! Now we used high quality maple syrup but you could use molasses and we found that toasting the oats first leads to a crisper granola bar that sticks together better, but you can always skip the toasting and just add on to the final baking time by about 15 minutes if you’d like.
And go with the tiny marshmallows that you buy in a jar from Walmart or Target. If you can’t find them you could try minis but we haven’t tested with those. The real winner is dipping them in chocolate at the end. A little nod to a chocolate dipped granola bar that I had as a kid in my own packed lunch.
Wrap them up, leave a little note of encouragement or throw in a few extras with a note to find 3 friends to share them with (making sure they mention the nuts that give extra crunch and nutrition but could be bad news if there was a nut allergy. We have to always warn just in case!) so they can make new friends. So go have fun and let us know what you think!
Chocolate Dipped S’mores Granola Bars
- 4½ Cups Old Fashioned Oats
- ¼ Cup Coconut Oil, melted
- 4 Tablespoons Butter, unsalted and melted
- 1 Teaspoon Salt
- 1 Cup Brown Sugar
- ¼ Cup Grade A Maple Syrup
- ½ Cup Honey
- ¼ Cup Apple Juice
- 1 Teaspoon Vanilla
- 2 Cups Mom's Best Crispy Cocoa Rice
- 1 Cup Mom's Best Honey Graham Squares
- ½ Cup Sliced Almonds
- ¼ Cup Pecans, chopped
- ¼ Cup Sunflower Seeds
- 1 Cup Tiny Marshmallows
- 2 Chocolate Bars, chopped
- 1 Package Milk Chocolate Dipping Chocolate (1 pound)
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and rub butter over a cookie sheet, set aside. Bring out 2 more cookie sheets to toast the oats.
- In a large bowl, toss the oats with the coconut oil, melted butter and salt. Spread the mixture out on 2 baking sheets and toast in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring once and making sure they don't burn. Remove from the oven and set aside. Reduce the heat to 325 degrees F.
- In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the brown sugar, honey, apple juice and maple syrup. Heat the mixture slowly, stirring until all combined. Stir in the vanilla and remove from the heat.
- Toss together the toasted oats, cereals, sunflower seeds, pecans and almonds. Pour in the sugar mixture, stirring as you pour. Toss in the marshmallows and chocolate bars and stir to combine.
- Press into 1 baking sheet (greased with butter) and bake until golden, about 20 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool completely. Cut pieces with a sharp knife and remove from the pan.
- Melt the chocolate in a microwave safe bowl for 30 second intervals. Dip or drizzle the bars and allow to set up. Store in airtight containers.