Weekend Baking: Peanut butter, honey and cranberry granola bars.

I blame Nigella for my recent love of baking. She seduced me a couple of months ago when I was curled up in bed one afternoon, with a cup of coffee, watching endless episodes of  Nigella Christmas Bites (I know it was ridiculously early to be watching anything to do with Christmas, but I was wearing the boys festive jumper and it got me in the mood for all things mince pies). In one episode, she made some sort of buttery flapjack with chocolate chips… and oh my goodness it looked delicious. Now, I’m a bit of a health freak (I like the occasional treat of course), but I know that I’d feel the need to run a mile after I’d devoured a bowl of butter, so, I researched some healthier options.  I found a healthy granola recipe on the BBC Good Food website, where peanut butter was used instead of butter. So, when I finally managed to peel myself out of bed on that rainy afternoon, I turned the oven on and began baking for the first time in my twenty-four years. Since that day, I bake pretty much every weekend. My life would be incomplete without it. Thanks, Nigella.


  • 4 tbsp peanut butter , plus extra for greasing
  • 200g porridge oats
  • 100g sunflower seeds
  • 50g sesame seeds
  • 50g chopped walnuts
  • 3 tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 100g dried cranberries , cherries, or a mix of your choice

    How to make:

    Heat oven to 160C/fan 140C/gas 3. Butter and line the base of a 18 x 25cm tin. Mix the oats, seeds and nuts in a roasting tin, then put in the oven for 5-10 mins so they get nice and toasty.

    Meanwhile, warm the peanut butter and honey in a pan, stirring until the peanut butter is melted (don’t forge to lick the spoon!). Add the oat mix, cinnamon and dried fruit, then mix until all the oats are well coated. Tip into the tin, press down lightly, then bake for 30 mins.

    Cool in tin, then cut into 12 bars. Sit down with a cup of tea and enjoy!!


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