My (current) Favorite Granola Recipe
Granola is a very popular snack. In the stores you will see all kinds of varieties of granola bars and, in the past few years, fancy loose granolas have been showing up on the shelves with a big price tag. I grew up on those rock hard, break your teeth, and get a sore jaw granola bars. I don’t eat those anymore, mostly because I value my teeth and I know I will not be getting another set, so it’s better not to take risks with them.
Granola is great. It’s healthy for you with all its oatiness, its fiber, and the protein (especially if it contains nuts). It can also be very bad for you if there is an excessive amount of sugar or fat. However, there is good news for the diet conscious among you. Granola is highly customizable, if you make your own, that is, and I recommend that you try it. For a fraction of the price, you can make a granola that suits your personal diet and tastes.
I have been making granola for months using this recipe as a loose framework. I like it because it make a huge amount of granola and it is low in added fat. If you want even lower fat, I’m sure you can add more oats and decrease the amount of nuts. This granola is also really great mixed with plain yogurt and a spoonful of your favorite jam (this is a really great way of using up those 60+ jars of jam I have in the cupboard)
By the way, be sure you add any dried fruit you are using after the granola has cooled. You don’t want your dried fruit to get too hard or it might pull out your crowns and fillings.
Makes about 2 pounds (1kg)
Inspired by David Lebovitz who adapted it from Feast, by Nigella Lawson
5 cups (450g) multi-grain flakes or old-fashioned rolled oats
3 cups (375g) almonds or any combination of nuts you prefer. I’ve used walnuts, pecans, cashews, etc.
1 cup (125g) sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
3/4 cup (100g) untoasted sesame seeds
1/2 cup (120g) packed light brown sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon dried ground ginger
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 plus 1/8 cup (280g) of peach butter or any fruit butter/jam that you like. Or, you can use 3/4 unsweetened applesauce plus 1/3 cup of rice syrup, agave syrup, maple syrup, or some other sweet syrupy thing
1/4 cup (80g) honey
2 tablespoons vegetable oil (or any oil you like–I use walnut oil)
2 cups or about 3 big handfuls of dried fruit (I like to use cranberries, raisins, and dried cherries in various quantities-use whatever you like!)
Preheat the oven to 300F (150C).
1. In a very large bowl, mix together the flaked grains or oats, almonds, sunflower and sesame seeds, brown sugar, cinnamon, ginger, and salt.
2. In a small saucepan, warm the liquid ingredients.
3. Mix the fruit mixture into the dry ingredients until thoroughly dispersed, then divide and spread the mixture evenly on two baking sheets. (If you have ones with sides, often called jelly-roll pans, use them.)
4. Bake the granola for about 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes, until the granola is deep golden brown.
5. Remove from oven, then cool completely.
6. Stir in dried fruit, if desired.
Store the granola in a large, airtight container. It will keep for up to one month. You will probably need a gallon sized container. It’s a lot of granola.