Let’s pretend that swimsuits aren’t out yet at Target.

chewy pistachio maracoon granola bars I howsweeteats.com

Because then we don’t have to worry about eating this entire batch of bars.

They’re kind of addicting.

Sort of like Target.

You know, there’s granola bars and then there’s like healthier granola bars. These are not that.

The healthy ones, that is. Think dessert granola bars. Isn’t that fun!

But does it even really matter? Because while it’s been at least 15 years, I still want my stupid granola bars to taste like those delicious quaker chewy versions that could be found in abundance in school lunches circa 1999.

Ugh. They are darn good. And isn’t there a s’mores version? And a million other wonderful flavors? That’s what I’m going for.

chewy pistachio maracoon granola bars I howsweeteats.com

The worst part about homemade granola bars is that everyone wants a chewy granola bar and I think that everyone (because I can apparently speak for the universe) holds the texture of their current bar against that of the chewy version from their tweenhood. The bars that were so chewy, when you pulled them apart it was almost like marshmallow (or something else sticky, yeah) gooeyness.

Why can’t those identical things be created in a kitchen? I know why. It begins with a P and ends in reservative. Life’s not fair.

chewy pistachio maracoon granola bars I howsweeteats.com

I do have a somewhat chewy good-for-you granola bar recipe in my cookbook. It’s delicious and chewy but also has nut butter, and for once in my life, I’m not feeling that at the moment.

This recipe, on the other hand, is filled with wonderful things that promote the soft chewiness like butter and sugar and honey. And a chocolate drizzle because why not a chocolate drizzle.

But. Then swimsuits are out at T to the arget and I want all parts of summer but that and probably shouldn’t have three bars for a snack.

Even though there are so many cute ones that I like, OMG. Swimsuits, that is. Target and their mystical brainwashing and binge shopping air flow. Sneaks into the head.

chewy pistachio maracoon granola bars I howsweeteats.com

Speaking of OMGs, I’ve had the lyrics “she was like oh my god/this is my song/I’ve been listening to the radio all night long/sitting ‘round waitin’ for it to come on” in my head for over THREE days. That Luke Bryan knows what he’s doing. Or at least his songwriters do. Because if you’re like me, aka in the percentage of the stereotypical millennial general female population, those song lyrics are exactly how you speak and you actually think OMG, this is my song.

More brainwashing.

So I figured I’d try to brainwash you with these granola bars, since we’ve already been brainwashed by chewy bars anyway.

The chewiest!

chewy pistachio maracoon granola bars I howsweeteats.com

It no doubt is a continuation of my pistachio freak out obsession. Which makes me feel incredibly old, because I like to think that only old people like nuts. Or things with nuts.

Or ice cream with nuts.

I can say this because I am starting to like things with nuts. If you like things with nuts, I’m starting to get it.

If you ever see me order a butter pecan ice cream cone though, please just drive me to the nearest assisted living community. It’s college for seniors, after all.

I basically belong there already.

chewy pistachio maracoon granola bars I howsweeteats.com

Want to know something nuts, all puns intended? I took one of these bars for my breakfast on a plane last week and the person sitting next to me asked if I had another one. Either they had guts at 7AM or these just looked ridiculously good.

I’m going with the latter.

I’m quite curious about this person that asked a stranger for a snack though.

chewy pistachio maracoon granola bars I howsweeteats.com


Chewy Pistachio Macaroon Granola Bars

Yield: makes at least 12 bars

Total Time: 1 hour


4 cups rolled oats
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 cup salted pistachios, chopped
1/2 cup almond flour
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
8 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup honey
2 tablespoons vanilla bean paste

chocolate drizzle
3/4 cup chocolate chips
2 tablespoons coconut oil


Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Spray a 9x13 inch dish with nonstick spray.

In a large bowl, combine the oats, flour, pistachios, almond flour, coconut, brown sugar and baking soda. Stir well to mix.

In a saucepan, combine the butter, coconut oil, honey and vanilla bean paste. Heat over low heat until the butter and oil melts, stirring the mixture together. Pour the butter mixture over the dry ingredients, stirring well until the entire thing is moistened. You don't want any dry oat parts. Press the mixture in the greased dish and smooth the top with the back of a spoon. Bake for 18 minutes, or until the top is slightly golden and the bars are set. Allow to cool completely before slicing into bars. You can drizzle the chocolate on top before or after cutting - you can also dip them.

chocolate drizzle
Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave or a double boiler on the stovetop, stirring to fully melt the chocolate. Stir in the coconut oil and continue to mix until it's melted. Drizzle the chocolate over top or dip the bars in the chocolate.

[adapted from allrecipes]

chewy pistachio maracoon granola bars I howsweeteats.com

if you need me I’ll probably be in Target. (feign shock please)

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69 Responses to “Chewy Pistachio Macaroon Granola Bars.”

  1. #
    Taylor @ Food Faith Fitness — April 11, 2014 @ 6:56 am

    The opening line made me laugh. I agree. I’m not ready for swimsuit season yet.
    I am dying that you made a macaroon into a granola bar (side note: SO agree with the chewy bar thing. whywhywhy)
    I need these. Want these. Gonna eat all these.


  2. #
    Tracy | Peanut Butter and Onions — April 11, 2014 @ 7:07 am

    These do look addictive… and I am trying to not think of trying on bathing suits. I agree… asking a stranger for a snack seems a little weird, they must have looked pretty darn good.


  3. #
    Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat — April 11, 2014 @ 7:25 am

    Mmm these sound delicious! I’m with you on the nuts thing – slowly starting to get into it but definitely not ready for the butter pecan ice cream cone. ;) Happy Friday Jess!


  4. #
    Belinda@themoonblushbaker — April 11, 2014 @ 7:30 am

    I am coming out of bathing suit season ( Aussie here), so all the more reason to eart the tray for me!

    Yay for you getting nuts! Take it slow you will be come a nut addict soon:)


  5. #
    Meg Jones | The Spatularette — April 11, 2014 @ 7:33 am

    I saw Luke Bryan last summer right after the new album had been released… which btw I had been binge listening to for a week in preparation for the concert. When he started Play It Again, I grabbed by bf and was litterally like: OMG this is MY song! So cliche but so good. SO good.


  6. #
    Erin | The Law Student's Wife — April 11, 2014 @ 7:34 am

    QUAKER SMORES G-bars for life! How did you know the way to speak to my heart?? I haven’t taken the butter pecan deep dive yet, but I can’t say I don’t think about it. If I find a butter rum pecan, all bets and my dignity are off.


  7. #
    DessertForTwo — April 11, 2014 @ 8:15 am

    WAIT. I can ask strangers for food? My life just changed. I’m getting on a plane today. Will report back.


  8. #
    amanda @ fake ginger — April 11, 2014 @ 8:21 am

    I can’t buy those stupid Quaker granola bars for my kids because I will seriously eat the entire box. It’s ridiculous. Why are they so good?!

    I’m kind of going through a pistachio thing (that never ends) so I should probably make these.


  9. #
    Cara's Healthy Cravings — April 11, 2014 @ 8:49 am

    I totally support dessert granola bars..I would probably add some ice cream to go along with it ;)


  10. #
    Ashley — April 11, 2014 @ 8:55 am

    I think you should have said…Yes, I have 3, but they are all for me. I totally get what you mean about those damn quaker granola bars. Brown rice syrup makes granola bars extra chewy!!


  11. #
    Ellen — April 11, 2014 @ 8:58 am

    What is more embarrassing than the fact that I already have tickets to TWO Luke Bryan concerts this summer is that I wish I had more. Luke Bryan is everything. Swimsuits? No, just no.


  12. #
    Ashley — April 11, 2014 @ 8:59 am

    p.s. I have been loving pistachios since the start of my existence. I think they just LOOK like old people nuts.


    • Barbara — April 11th, 2014 @ 6:18 pm

      old people nuts :)


  13. #
    MaryK. — April 11, 2014 @ 9:12 am

    I love you. Happy Friday! That is all.


  14. #
    Stephanie @ Girl Versus Dough — April 11, 2014 @ 9:50 am

    Asking strangers for a snack = genius. But also, WTF. Though I’ll be honest, if I was anywhere near these granola bars I’d probably do the same.


  15. #
    Molly @ Doughvelopment — April 11, 2014 @ 9:55 am

    Well call me old because I like nuts…wait oops you know what I mean…at least I hope! haha! That white pan is BEAUTIFUL! I would probably destroy it, but darn it looks so good in photos!


  16. #
    Aimee — April 11, 2014 @ 10:21 am

    “it’s college for seniors” may very well be one of the most funny things I have ever read/heard. Thank you for making me laugh every day and for the awesome recipes. I think I make something from your blog at least once a week.


  17. #
    Alyssa — April 11, 2014 @ 11:02 am
  18. #
    leslie @ definitely not martha — April 11, 2014 @ 11:03 am

    ugggggghhhh….swimsuits. These look so good though. I need to find vanilla bean paste, I think. I’ve never seen it here. Sounds like it would be really good though.


  19. #
    Ilona @ Ilona's Passion — April 11, 2014 @ 11:04 am

    I pinned for later! Right now I have to focus on losing weight.. swimsuits are everywhere now..


  20. #
    Lisa @ Simple Pairings — April 11, 2014 @ 11:12 am

    Pistachios in granola bars – great idea! I never think to cook or bake with them. They’re always my designated snack food :) These bars look awesome – love the coconut chocolate drizzle!


  21. #
    Kim @ Adventures In A New(ish) City — April 11, 2014 @ 11:15 am

    That Luke Bryan song has been infiltrating my LIFE at the moment.

    Also these look R.I.D.I.C.U.L.O.U.S.!


  22. #
    Heather @ The Soulful Spoon — April 11, 2014 @ 11:30 am

    What a great recipe! You know, honestly, I would consider these healthy because of the ingredients you used. Now sure, they won’t help you lose weight, but they aren’t laced with canola oil, refined flour, butter, sugar, and ingredients I don’t have time to pronounce. Great rendition of how to make something healthIER:)

    Oh, and by the way, those swimsuits at Target are overrated! Do you know I used to refuse try them on in the store. Those lights in the dressing room should be outlawed! I’ll stick to the home and kitchen section of Target please and thank you:)

    Love your funny humor- such a needed refreshment:)


  23. #
    ami@naivecookcooks — April 11, 2014 @ 11:42 am

    These bars look so good!! I had Target addiction once so I try to avoid going there!! CRazy addicting place! :D


  24. #
    Chris — April 11, 2014 @ 11:58 am

    Okay, these look seriously yummy! I think I’m going to make them and send them in a goodie box for my son. However, I think I am a fairly good cook, but I’m not sure where to get Whole Wheat Pastry Flour or the Almond flour? Maybe Whole Foods?


  25. #
    Jara — April 11, 2014 @ 12:36 pm

    These look amazing! One question though: What is vanilla bean paste?


  26. #
    Averie @ Averie Cooks — April 11, 2014 @ 12:40 pm

    I love all the ingredients and how chewy and hearty they look! And the chocolate drizzles, mmm, always a great idea! Pinned


  27. #
    Phi @ The Sweetphi Blog — April 11, 2014 @ 12:56 pm

    Hahah, oh you made me laugh about swimsuit season…I agree, not ready! I make my husband and I granola bars all the time, and this take on them sounds yuuuuumy!


  28. #
    Rebecca — April 11, 2014 @ 1:55 pm

    I always want to be that brave stranger b/c randomness like that is often rewarded. except when it’s not. and then it’s awkward x 4319.

    We make your 5 ingredient bars all the time, so yay for chewy bars now!


  29. #
    Iris — April 11, 2014 @ 2:12 pm

    Oh how I love granola bars. And chocolate drizzle. And Target swimsuits. This post’s pictures look soooo delicious.



  30. #
    Lindsay @ The Live-In Kitchen — April 11, 2014 @ 2:22 pm

    I have to say, butter pecan ice cream is pretty amazing! I actually have a recipe for it on my blog, and I’m not really one for nuts in things. I feel like pecans are just a totally different thing. These granola bars do look ridiculously chewy. I’m all about the dessert granola bar. Any time I want a snack I pretty much just want dessert anyways.


  31. #
    Christine @ Cooking with Cakes — April 11, 2014 @ 2:37 pm

    yes, this looks incredible, but the last part of the story got me! you meet the strangest ppl when you travel, I swear, but then again if I saw one of these next to me on JetBlue, I’d prob ask for one also lol.

    and PS – Butter Pecan ice cream with hot fudge and rainbow sprinkles? girrrl you don’t even know the amazingness


  32. #
    Sophia @ NY Foodgasm — April 11, 2014 @ 3:18 pm

    Ummmm yeah this is GENIUS! Want to make these now!


  33. #
    Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar — April 11, 2014 @ 3:22 pm

    Swimsuit season legit scares me!!! I’d rather hide inside with these :)


  34. #
    Carol at Wild Goose Tea — April 11, 2014 @ 3:39 pm

    It’s nice to know about the lights in Target—-Ha. Swimsuit season is coming. Yay. Hey I don’t normally seek out granola bars. But I would seek these like a heat seeking missile.


  35. #
    Katelyn — April 11, 2014 @ 3:59 pm

    Butter Pecan is my jam, I don’t even care that it makes me sound 70 when I order it. It has butter in the name, how can it not be amazing?? And these bars look wonderful!


  36. #
    Michelle @ A Healthy Mrs — April 11, 2014 @ 4:05 pm

    Holy yum — I’m almost scared to make these for fear that I’ll just eat the whole batch at once…


  37. #
    Erika — April 11, 2014 @ 4:48 pm

    Oh my god. “If you ever see me order a butter pecan ice cream cone though, please just drive me to the nearest assisted living community.” <– that is my bf. That is basically all I took from this. That and I need a Quaker chewy bar in my face right now. Er…need to make these right now, that's what I meant.


  38. #
    Callahan — April 11, 2014 @ 5:32 pm

    These look so yummy!


  39. #
    Barbara — April 11, 2014 @ 6:21 pm

    I laughed out (really) loud in my cubicle when i got to the part about the butter pecan ice cream cone :)


  40. #
    ATasteOfMadness — April 11, 2014 @ 7:48 pm

    Haha, I am so for pistachios in everything! This looks super delicious! I think I would do the same on a plane beside someone eating these. They do look that good ;)


  41. #
    Amanda N — April 11, 2014 @ 11:22 pm

    There’s something about the sun, warmer weather, and country music that is making me so happy right now!


  42. #
    Lotte Kristiansen — April 12, 2014 @ 3:38 am

    These just made my day. As do you. Keep it up. Please!


  43. #
    Lindsay — April 12, 2014 @ 6:57 am

    Dying at the stranger on the plane!! I’m definitely one of those people w serious food envy. If I see someone eating I can’t help but think, omg I want that. I think I secretly always wished I had the guts to ask a stranger for a snack lol


  44. #
    Mariah and Coty@quirksandtwists — April 12, 2014 @ 9:06 am

    Holy cow these look delicious! I love all of your granola bar recipes, your coconut chewy bars are my go to!


  45. #
    Ala — April 13, 2014 @ 1:43 am

    Swimsuits out at Target? Nooo… ;) I have absolutely no clue what you’re talking about. Plus this is granola. Oats and fiber and all that amazing swimsuit-appropriate stuff! I’ve been looking everywhere for an ultimate chewy version, Pinned!


  46. #
    Medeja — April 13, 2014 @ 5:20 am

    Sounds like something really addictive.. :)


  47. #
    Katie | Healthy Seasonal Recipes — April 13, 2014 @ 6:07 am

    Jess, I just read this post out loud to my daughter when she asked me what food blogs I like to read. It made us both laugh out loud several times. She now desperately wants me to make these granola bars.


  48. #
    Lindsey — April 13, 2014 @ 10:11 am

    I feel like I have read this answer before but can I somehow sub vanilla extract for the paste. I NEED these!


    • Chris — April 13th, 2014 @ 6:34 pm

      Easily. Just use a little extra.


  49. #
    Chris — April 13, 2014 @ 6:32 pm

    Snap! I love making my own toasted maple muesli (granola) which contains pistachios, almond meal, rolled oats, coconut, chia and flaked quinoa among other things. Last weekend, I mixed about 4 cups of muesli with a can of condensed milk and about a cup of caramel flavoured chocolate chips, baked it for about 40 minutes and then drizzled the resulting bars with melted milk chocolate. I called mine ‘Oxymoron Bars’ because they’re full of healthy ingredients but they’re really bad for you. 



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