Granola. Why oh why is it so delicious?
When you think about it, it's basically just sweet, crunchy oats. I guess sweet, crunchy oats is all you really need in life. And if you happen to come across some yogurt and maybe a piece of ripe, delicious fruit- now that's what I call a champion's breakfast.
Before I first made granola at home I used to think making granola was complicated. Now I know the truth: it's super easy and sooooooo much cheaper than getting store-bought granola (especially if you are used to getting the fancy, organic, non-gmo kinds).
Another huge advantage of homemade over store-bought granola is that YOU ARE THE KING/QUEEN of your granola. You decide what to put inside your granola, and how much of each ingredient to use. For example: I HATE RAISINS, and am always looking for raisin-free granola, which is not necessarily easy to come by. So when I make my own granola, raisins become persona non grata, because, as I've just said: I AM THE QUEEN OF MY GRANOLA, HEAR ME ROAR!
Now that you've heard me roar, let's start Granoling. Now, don't go getting all obsessed about the quantities, we're making free-style granola, so quantities don't matter that much. Adjust the quantities and add/omit ingredients to fit your taste (and your pantry).
- Rolled Oats - 2-2.5 cups
- Pecans - 1 cup
- Almonds (chopped or sliced) - 1 cup
- Sunflower seeds - 1 cup
- Pumpkin seeds - 1 cup
- Coconut (flakes or chips) - 0.5-1 cup, depending on how much you like coconut
- Additional crunchy options: Pistachios, Cashews, Peanuts, Macadamia nuts, Poppy seeds
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter (can be substituted with unsweetened applesauce for a vegan/lower claorie version)
- Ground cinnamon - about 1/2 teaspoon
- Vanila extract - 1 teaspoon
- 3/4 cup honey or maple syrup
About 1/2 cup each of one or two kinds of add-ons, like:
- Any kinds of dried fruit
- Chocolate chips
1) Preheat the oven to 350F.
2) Mix all the dry, crunchy ingredients together in a bowl.
3) Cook the honey (or maple) with the butter (or applesauce) and spices on the stove top for 3-4 minutes and pour it in the bowl. Mix well until everything is coated with the syrup.
4) Spread the mixture in a thin layer on a flat tray (you'll probably need more than one tray) covered with baking paper.
And now to the oven!
5) Bake for 20-25 minutes, or a little longer if you like your granola darker and even crunchier.
6) Take out of the oven, let cool and break to smaller chunks. Mix in the add-ons. Serve with milk, almond/soy milk or yogurt.