Easy Healthy Granola Bars
National Sunflower
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1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds
2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup almonds, sliced
1/2 cup wheat germ
1/2 cup honey
1/4 cup dark brown sugar, packed
1 ounce unsalted butter, plus extra for pan
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
6 1/2 ounces chopped dried fruit, any combination of apricots, cherries or other favorites

Butter a 9-by-9-inch glass baking dish and set aside. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Spread the oats, sunflower seeds, almonds and wheat germ onto a cookie sheet. Place in the oven and toast for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Combine honey, brown sugar, butter, extract and salt in a medium saucepan and place over medium heat. Cook until the brown sugar has completely dissolved. Once the oat mixture is done, remove it from the oven and reduce the heat to 300 degrees. Immediately add the oat mixture to the liquid mixture and the dried fruit. Stir to combine. Put mixture into the baking dish and press down, evenly distributing the mixture, and bake for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely. Cut into squares and store in an airtight container for up to a week.

Courtesy of Chef Bob Holloway, Eggland's Best Eggs, Platteville, Colo.
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