Easy & Yummy Homemade Granola

granola.jpgIn an ideal world, I’d make everything from scratch, but often – not surprisingly – time is an issue. But the one thing I never, ever compromise on is granola. Store bought granola has never suited me (too sweet, not clumpy enough, skimpy on nuts and fruit, etc.), and the good news is that granola is super easy to make at home. I made Food to Live By’s granola pretty steadily for about a year, but our friend Amy recently passed on a fantastic recipe from Martha Stewart. The online version is a bit different from the clipping Amy shared; below is my annotated/adapted version of the recipe; fantastic if you like chunky granola. It’s so good I make it in double batches.

+ + + + +

Homemade Granola

Originally from Martha Stewart; Makes about 8 cups

  • 1/2 cup shredded coconut
  • 4 cups old-fashioned rolled oats (not instant)
  • 1 cup of your favorite nuts (e.g., coarsely chopped almonds, walnuts, pecans; I usually mix two types of nuts)
  • 3/4 cup of mixed seeds (e.g., sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, flax seeds; you can also include wheat germ)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
  • 1/3 cup canola oil
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup of your favorite dried fruit (e.g., raisins, cranberries, cherries, apricots)

    1. Line toaster tray with tin foil. Spread shredded coconut and toast until golden. (Set on lowest toaster heat and keep an eye on it since coconut can burn quickly.) Allow to cool.

    2. Heat oven to 325 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment or Silpats. In a large bowl, mix oats, nuts, seeds, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Add oil and honey and stir until well combined. Spread mixture onto baking pans; bake until granola is golden brown, about 30-40 minutes (start checking at 30 minutes as oven performance varies).

    3. When done, remove granola from oven and allow to cool on pan. Using a spatula, transfer granola from pan to a large bowl and break up into chunks. Gently stir in coconut and dried fruit. Store in airtight container.

    Other notes:

    The great thing about granola is that you can adapt it to suit your tastes. So, for example, if you don’t like coconut skip that step and sub in some more of your favorite fruit instead. Just keep the wet/dry ingredients balance consistent.

    This recipe keeps well and is so good that I make a double batch and store it in two large airtight containers. I love that the granola is packed with nutrients and is guaranteed to be gobbled by the whole family.

    Finally, by virtue of making granola at home in quantity it’s nice to know that we’re doing a small part for the earth by reducing packaging waste.

    Image credit: Martha Stewart