My sister recently posted a granola recipe on her FB page (not her awesome blog, Harvest Moon Kitchen) and since I am starting my Real Food Challenge tomorrow I thought I’d prep some this weekend so we can have it for the week. Of course I couldn’t find the post when i wanted to start cooking so I Googled “how to make granola” and found this great recipe!
Here is what I came up with and what I learned about making homemade granola. This is the cut and pasted recipe (with my commentary in italics) from Completely Delicious.
- 2 cups (180 grams) old-fashioned oats
- 1/4 cup sweetener such as sugar, maple syrup or honey (I actually used a mix of maple syrup and honey and used 1/3 of a cup instead of 1/4)
- 1/4 cup olive oil, vegetable oil, melted butter, or melted coconut oil
- 1 cup (140 grams) nuts, whole or sliced (I chopped my almonds, walnuts and pecans)
- 1 – 2 cups of more nuts, shredded coconut, dried fruit, seeds, or chopped chocolate (because I’m a distracted cook I didn’t understand why this was a separate ingredient… um, it’s important, see *below!)
- Pinch of salt
- 1 teaspoon flavoring such as vanilla, coconut, or almond extract (I used vanilla–make sure you’re not using imitation vanilla, it’s cheaper but not as good or natural!)
- 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon spice such as cinnamon, ginger, pumpkin pie spice (I used nutmeg, cinnamon and ginger my 2nd try and it was YUM!)
- I also added pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds and flax.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- In a large bowl, mix together the oats, nuts and any other dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, combine the oil/melted butter, extracts, and liquid sweetener, if using. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix thoroughly so that everything is moistened.
- Spread out on a large sheet pan and bake until golden, 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. Let cool.
- Store granola in an airtight container at room temperature for up to several weeks.
*For clumpy granola, increase the oil/butter and sweetener to 1/3 cup each and do not stir during baking. Break into clumps after granola has cooled.
*Add dried fruit during the last 10 minutes of baking. Do not add chocolate until granola has cooled.
*Shredded coconut burns easily, so keep an eye on it. You can also reduce the oven temp to 300 degrees F to be safe.
What I learned
- Don’t add the fruit too early. I obviously missed that step and put raisins in at the beginning. They plumped up back into grapes and then shriveled into a disgustingly hard and wrinkled mass. If you’ve never eaten a burned raisin count yourself lucky–they’re gross.
- If your nuts are not raw don’t cook them! I had roasted some almonds last month and had some still in the cupboard, I chopped them up and added them and they tasted a bit burned when they were done toasting for a 2nd time. This goes for things like seeds too.
- Raw pumpkin and sesame seeds add a delicious nutty flavor!
- Watch your granola! I put two pans in the oven and my darker cookie pan burned the edges of granola (the pan was less full). I’m pretty bad at setting timers too and the first batch was more than ideally crispy. On my second try the lighter pan was kinda squishy when I took it out (I really didn’t want it to burn!) but once it cooled it crisped right up!
- I also learned Twinkles is not feeling well… she was not up to trying anything solid, not even this delicious granola (Punkin ate enough for both of them with Peanut begging for bites the whole time!)