Homemade granola. So simple, so good for you. So darned yummy. And so easy to make you will never eat store bought granola again. It literally comes together in 5 minutes. (and then of course, you have to pop it in the oven).
I love homemade granola for so many reasons. 1. Far less sugar than store bought. 2. No preservatives. 3. Great way to use up leftover pantry items. Not to mention– so darned YUMMY. Seriously-this stuff is evaporating from my house. Two of my friends had babies this week (Christmas babes!!!). So in a few days, I am planning to drop off dinner and I was going to bring a jar of granola as well. But I’m not sure this is going to last that long, so I guess I’ll have to make another batch. Darn.
Today’s batch is oats, pecans (from my dad’s yard), cashews, (left over from the Spicy Roasted Rosemary Cashews) , slivered almonds, shredded coconut, dark brown sugar, vanilla and a little maple syrup. If you bought maple syrup for the Sweet and Spicy Carrot Fries here is another great use for it. I also use a little salt to keep it from being too sweet.
When I say this comes together fast, I am not kidding. Dump your oats and nuts in a big bowl and give them a quick stir. In a smaller bowl, combine the oil, sugar, syrup, vanilla and salt. Whisk together, pour over oat mixture and stir to combine. You are pretty much done.
Now you have two options. The great granola question. To clump or not to clump? The people of my household like clumps. If you are in our camp- follow directions as written. If you are a non-clumper, divide your mixture between two sheet pans and stir the granola around about every 15 minutes.
For you clumpers- ALL of your mixture goes on one pan. Press it down with your hands or a spatula and pop in the oven. Your kitchen is about to smell AMAZING.
We are a clumping family, so I’m sorry I don’t have a pic of the two pan option, but I am sure you get the idea. If you are using one pan- about 30 minutes into cooking time, using a flat plastic spatula, flip portions of the mixture over for even browning. For looser granola with the two pans- give it a quick stir about every 15 minutes. (This obviously requires slightly more effort. We just might be a clumping family for more than one reason……)
Once it’s done, let it cool and then toss in your dried fruit of choice. I like to leave the batch plain so I can add it whatever I want serving by serving. This morning, it was dried cranberries and orange zest. Amazing.
Alan’s favorite is dried blueberries
And he hates cranberries, so if I add those in, my granola is safe from sneaking hands.
Our two year old is loving this stuff. I don’t think cranberries are going to work as a deterrent anymore…..
This recipe is super forgiving. Hate coconut? Leave it out. No cashews in the pantry, but you have walnuts? Swap em. Want seeds? Add em. Just keep the liquid/nut&oat ratio the same. Bon Appetit has a great article with homemade granola tips. Check it out here.
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