When people would tease me for being a hippy I would always joke that I don’t make my own granola. Too late now. With my nut allergy, the store-bought granolas that won’t kill me tend to be either extremely high in sugar or nutritionally poor (or both). It’s also like pulling teeth to find any at all that don’t have nuts in them.
But even if you don’t have to worry about nuts, homemade granola can save you money and waste. Not to mention it gives you complete control over the nutrition and the flavors. You can make your granola completely your own by adding in or taking out whatever you want. In theory I could make my granola different every time, but why mess with something that works?
coconut oil for pans
3 cups thick rolled oats
1/2 cup steel cut oats
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1/4 cup chia seeds or 1/4 cup flax seeds (or both if you are feeling daring)
1/4 cup amaranth, uncooked
1/2 cup honey (I like orange honey)
1/4 cup brown sugar (I don’t usually pack it, but if you like your granola really sweet you can)
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup freshly squeezed juice from an orange
1 teaspoon (or more depending on desired taste) ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 and 1/2 cups diced dried fruit (I like apricots and tart cherries, but apple, cranberries, or any other dried fruit would be good.)
1. Preheat the oven to 300F
2. Lightly grease two baking sheets (you absolutely want ones with sides for this or you are going to have a nightmare of sticky oats to scrape out of your oven and off your stove).
3. Combine all of the dry ingredients in a bowl (except the sugars, spices, and dried fruit) and mix well.
4. Combine the wet ingredients including the brown sugar, maple syrup, coconut oil, cinnamon, and spices. Whisk well until combined. (I melt the coconut oil and the honey if it needs it before I try to combine to make it easier and help the sugars being to melt.)
5. Mix together the wet and dry ingredients from steps 3 and 4 in a large bowl (everything except the dried fruit should be included).
6. Divide the mixture between the two baking sheets with sides that you had greased earlier and spread them out as evenly and thinly as possible.
7. Take the sheets out of the oven and flip/mix the granola every 10 minutes to prevent it from burning or drying unevenly.
8. Bake until its a deep golden brown, between 40 and 60 minutes depending.
9. Once you like the color, pull them out of the oven. However, be ware that if the granola is not dry enough it will be a clumpy mess when it dries and it will be like trying to chew threw a granola brick, so you do want to be sure that is a deep brown, not lightly browned. The tricky part is that no matter when you pull it out of the oven the granola is going to be sticky and moist until the sugars harden up again and make it crispy and crunchy. Put the pans on a wire rack and allow them to cool completely.
10. When the granola is cool, mix in the dried fruit and put it in an airtight storage container. You can store it at room temperature for a few weeks or put it in the freezer to extend it’s life.
Recipe adapted from Tom Douglas’ The Dahlia Bakery Cookbook.