First off, I must say that I'm a little embarrassed by the fact that this blog has been up and running for almost two months, and I have neglected to put up a granola recipe until now! Nevertheless, I hope this granola recipe is worth the delay. Not only is it quick and easy, but also super delicious and healthy! It's perfect for snacking, topping yogurt or smoothie bowls, and even gifting to friends for Christmas. Enjoy!
4 cups quick oats (or old-fashioned work, too)
1 cup raw, unsalted chopped pecans (or walnuts, sub with sunflower seeds to make nut-free)
1/2 cup raw, unsalted pumpkin seeds (or sunflower seeds or just add more pecans)
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup coconut oil, melted (less than 30 seconds in microwave)
1/4 cup vegetable oil or olive oil (vegetable oil makes clumpier granola)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup honey (or maple syrup)
3/4 cup dried cherries (optional; may also sub with any other dried fruit)
Rimmed baking sheet or baking pan
Prep time: 10 min, Cook time: 20-23 min
1.) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a rimmed baking sheet or baking pan with parchment paper.
2.) Combine the dry ingredients (oats, nuts, seeds, salt, & cinnamon) into a large mixing bowl. Set aside the cherries to add later.
3.) Mix the wet ingredients (vanilla, oils and honey) into the dry mix. Make sure to thoroughly combine! Feel free to add more honey or oil as you feel needed to ensure that all of the oat mixture is lightly covered.
4.) After mixing up the granola, you're ready to stick it in the oven! Spread it out about a half-inch thick evenly over the pan and put it into the oven for about 20-23 minutes total, stirring midway through so it browns evenly.
5.) Once the granola is light brown, take it out and let it cool completely while still in the pan. When it is fully cooled, break it up and add the dried cherries. It is now ready to eat or store.
And voila, delicious granola in about an hour (including cooling time)! I really like it because it has a good mix of sweet and salty. The biggest thing I learned while making it is to try not to taste the mixture until after it has been cooked because it has so much better flavors afterwards! When I was taste-testing along the way, I was discouraged by how salty the granola tasted; however, that oversalted taste went away after the granola was fully cooked.
While I found that this granola tastes amazing using the ingredients above, feel free to experiment with different nuts and fruits! Pretty much no matter how you decide to do your granola, the process will essentially be the same and is sure to be delicious. Pair it with an acai smoothie bowl and you'll be good to go! This is also the perfect little "happy" to stick in a mason jar and give out to friends and family this season.
Happy granolaing :)