Squash and Apple Bake & Crunchy Chocolate Dipped Granola Bars

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Oh Fall, so lovely is the Fall ~ the crispness in the air ~ the crunch of the leaves ~ the smell in the air ~ the salt & pepper shakers ~ the hoodies ~ the sheer THANKFULNESS for everything ~ Fall is so welcome. (Did I mention it IS the 1st day of fall??!? “High fives all around ~ wohoo whohoo!!”)  I hope you are enjoying it too!!!! Here is a fall recipe from me to you…..

I enjoy squash, so…. I MAY be the only one in my family WHO truely does, BUT that is NOT going to stop me from sharing this AWESOME recipe. The squash and apples roast to a lovely deliciousness right before your very nose.  IT might just tempt your picky eaters too!!!

* I do NOT have a kitchen scale, so I do not know how much 2 lb. of squash is ~ I just cut enough to fill a 9″ x 13″ pan about 1/2 full with cut up squash.
* I like to uncover the last 20 minutes of cooking, it thickens up the juices and browns the squash a little bit.
* I leave the skins on my apples, though you may peel if you are not keen on that ~ I need all the nutrients I can get!!!
* This recipe is from my Aunt and she suggests serving it with pork chops and rice, I liked the sound of that, so that is what I ALWAYS serve it with too!!
* I used 4 apples, feel free to add more to your bake as well!!

Squash & Apple Bake 
2 lb. butternut squash,
1/2 c. brown sugar
1/4 c. melted butter
1 TB. flour
1/2 tsp. salt (opt.)
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
2 baking apples, cored and cut up
Have fun cutting that squash ~ oh, and be be careful, PLEASE!! I cut in half, remove the seeds and then peel the rind off with a vegetable peeler till I see no more rind, then I cut into 1″ slices, then cube up. (But you can do it however you want to, just get yourself some cubed squash! :)) Put  cubed squash in a greased 9″ x 13″ pan, add the cut up apples.  Combine the sugar, butter, flour, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Spread it over the apple/squash mixture to the best of your ability, that is hard, sometimes I melt it a bit to make it more spreadable. Bake @ 350* for about 50-60 minutes. (I like to stir at about 30 minutes, then uncover to bake the rest of the way.) Enjoy this taste of Fall!!

Thanks Aunt Laurel for this fantastic recipe! One of my favs!!

Now for the much-anticipated (….in my dreams…..) 2nd installment of “lunch box ideas”! Drum roll…….
GRANOLA BARS!!!!!  Do you love ’em? Have you wanted to make your own BUT have failed attempt after attempt and attempt ~ or was that just me? I just couldn’t get it right. Though….not any more! 🙂 I have found a bar that I THINK will end my search. Thanks to the Pioneer Women for this one! Check out the original recipe here…I of course was lacking some ingredients and went with what I had, was happy and will probably just leave it as I did it!

*These babies ARE crunchy. I cooked mine the full 25 minutes, will check at 18!!! minutes next time FOR sure. I let it cool all the way, bad. I could not cut! I had to break, so I got some not so lovely “bars”. My advice for that would be to “scor” the pan o’ granola into the size bars you want, not going all the way through ~ that way when it cools you can just break and it SHOULD break along your line you made….should.

* I think that you could use your imagination with these, Pioneer Women added nuts (sounds great, I sadly had none! Add about 1 c.). How about instead of dipping in the chocolate, just add some chocolate chips (though you may want to cool the sugar mixture down a bit 1st or they will ALL melt). If you like coconut, then that  might be a GREAT addition too!

* Pioneer Women used Rice Krispie cereal (I used corn flakes). Use whatever cereal you have! (Within reason of course…..maybe Allbran, Cheerios, etc.)

* Feel free to use wheat germ, oat bran, wheat bran ~ any of those type of things ~ just gives it an extra bit of health!! PW used wheat germ.

Here is the bars the way I made them….as I said HERE is the original! How she gets her things to look so purdy, I will NEVER know!!

Crunchy Chocolate Dipped Granola Bars
6 c. quick oats
1/4 c. melted butter
1/4 c. oil
1/2 tsp. salt
1 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. honey
1/4 c. molasses
1/4 c. water
3 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/2 c. coarsely crushed Corn Flakes
1 c. oat bran
1 1/2 bags of semi-sweet chocolate chips
Combine the oats and the oil, butter and salt. Toss this in a large bowl. Pour into 2 cookie sheets (with sides) and bake @ 350* for about 18 minutes, stirring a few times. You want them just toasted light brown. Meanwhile. Heat the brown sugar, honey, molasses and apple juice just until sugar is dissolved ~ ALMOST to a full boil. Take off heat and add the vanilla. Pour the toasted oats in a large bowl, add the Corn Flakes and oat bran ~ pour the sugar mix over and stir till ALL coated wall. Pour into a foil lined cookie sheet (with sides), be sure to grease the foil well. Gently press down a bit till nice and flat. Lower your oven to 325* and bake for 18-22 minutes ~ be sure to check at 18! It may just be done by then!!! When done, let cool a few minutes then scor your bar shape into the large sheet of granola. This will help you later on. Let cool all the way. Cut into bars. Dip into melted chocolate, either all the way or just the bottom 1/2. Place on waxed paper (chocolate side up, if you can) and let set till the chocolate hardens. This yields quite a bit of bars, the number is unknown to me, just a lot. Why not put in baggies right away and freeze, so lunch time prep is easy peasy!! I hope you enjoy these as much as we did!!! THANKS!! 🙂

Recipe slightly adapted from Pioneer Women.

LET US REMEMBER IN ALL THINGS AND AT ALL TIMES TO ……..

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9 responses »

  1. Well Bobbi the recipes are nice but I LOVE the decorations!! Does make me want to try squash and apples very soon…but the decorations………………

    • TRUE THAT!! Please get rid of any other granola bar recipe I MAY have shared with you….this is a winner, IF you are into CRUNCHY things!!! I will be trying out some chewy granola bar recipes too…I will keep you updated on my findings….

  2. Made these granola bars yesterday and am LOVING them! (didn’t even attempt the chocolate on yet, but I am sure they are even more divine then!) Love the flavors I get from them (I used water b/c I didn’t have apple juice in the house.) Wish they were a bit more chewy. Next time I will bake for 12-15 minutes and see if they are a bit chewier and not so crumbly, but love the crumbles for granola!

    • Oh, you HAVE to try the chocolate…it is my favorite part, of course!!! They are super duper crunchy, I too will bake just a bit shorter next time, but actually that crunch is what I sorta am addicted to right now…..(I am hiding the last bar, don’t tell!) The chocolate might help them not to crumble so much, just a bonus to adding the chocolate! 😉 Cause mine really are not too crumbly. Thanks for your note!

  3. Pingback: Granola Bars – Chewy ones! « Kats’ Kitchen

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