4 tbsp. vegan butter sticks (such as Earth Balance)
1/4 cup agave
1/2 cup creamy salted peanut butter
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 to 1/2 tsp. salt to taste (1/2 tsp. will give the granola bars a sweet & salty taste)
1/4 cup non-dairy chocolate chips
Line an 8x8-inch baking pan with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, combine the oats, hemp seeds, chia seeds, coconut, and cinnamon. Mix well.
In a saucepan over medium heat, melt your vegan butter. Add in your agave and peanut butter, stirring as you add. Be careful, as these ingredients may burn if your heat is too high, or if you don't stir enough. Cook until the mixture starts to bubble (about 2 minutes), then remove it from the heat and stir in the vanilla and salt.
Slowly pour your wet ingredients into the oat mix and stir well. Your wet ingredients will act as glue to hold everything together. Every part of the dry mix should be coated with the peanut butter mixture.
Once your granola mixture has cooled a little, stir in your chocolate chips (you don't want them to melt!)
Spread your granola mix into the prepared pan. Then, using your hands, flatten the granola mix as much as you can. The more you push it together, the better it will hold together after you cut it!
Cover your pan and put it in the freezer for 20-30 minutes.
After your granola bars have cooled and hardened, use the parchment paper to lift them out of the pan, and place them on a cutting board. Cut them into 12 bars by cutting 6 rows, then cutting the rows in half.
Wrap them individually, in freezer bags, or place them in an airtight container, and store them in the freezer or refrigerator.
Notes & Hints
Chia seeds have a tendency to get stuck to your teeth when you eat them. So if I need these to-go, I often use extra hemp seeds in place of the chia seeds.