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How To Make Homemade Granola

There’s no denying that granola is a delicious breakfast option, but oftentimes it comes with a pretty hefty price tag and a lot of added sugar. Luckily, making your own at home is super easy, super economical, and puts you in control of all the ingredients. Whether you prefer loose granola or a more clumpy version, we’ll show you how to make your own perfect version at home!

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Our granola starts with rolled oats. And definitely not the quick-cooking or instant variety; either one will cook far too quickly for our purposes here. While there are granola recipes out there that use steel-cut oats with delicious results, it’s not a simple swap you can make since baking times and temps between the two definitely differ, so stick with basic rolled oats for this method. You’ll need four cups. (Or five. More on that in a bit.)

The formula is rather flexible. You can swap out varieties of nuts and seeds and spices pretty much however you’d like until you arrive at your most perfect version. So you can use sliced almonds or chopped pecans or sunflower seeds (or a combination of all three) with dried cranberries or raisins with pumpkin pie spice or cinnamon or nutmeg. We’ll show you the right ratios below.

For loose granola, it’s a simple matter of mixing up your dry ingredients – oats, nuts and/or seeds, spices, coconut flakes, and salt – and then tossing it with your fat (coconut oil or melted butter or olive oil) and sweetener (maple syrup, agave, or honey) and extract of choice (vanilla or almond or even lemon). But a couple of quick notes: if you choose not to use coconut flakes, just use five cups of oats instead of four. And if you’re using brown sugar, add that to the dry ingredients rather than the wet like you would with a liquid sweetener (like maple syrup). Spread it out on a sheet pan and let it bake until toasty, tossing it twice during the cooking time. That’s literally all it takes!

For clumpy-style granola, the method differs a little bit. It gets a longer baking time at a lower temperature but the process is just as simple – the secret is just in mixing in two egg whites that have been whisked until they’re a bit foamy. This helps the oats hold together as they bake. When you go to spread out the granola mixture, form it into an ‘O’ around the baking sheet so that there’s an empty hole in the center. With the addition of the egg whites, the center of the baking sheet is prone to staying soft, so this helps ensure it all gets nice and crunchy.

In our video, our ‘pumpkin spice’ loose granola uses sliced almonds, pumpkin seeds, pumpkin spice, brown sugar, and dried cranberries while our clumpy ‘maple pecan’ granola uses pecans, cinnamon, raisins, and maple syrup. They’re both delicious but this is definitely a ‘choose your own adventure’ type of cooking project… so use what you have in your cupboard or invent your own combination using the ratios below, and enjoy!

How To Make Homemade Granola

45 minutes to prepare serves 8

Ingredients

  • 4 cups rolled oats (not quick-cooking)
  • 1 cup nuts and/or seeds
  • 1 teaspoon spice, such as cinnamon, pumpkin spice, or nutmeg
  • 1 cup coconut flakes, or 1 more cup of oats
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup fat, such as coconut oil or olive oil
  • 1/3 cup sweetener, such as honey, agave, maple syrup, or brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla or almond extract
  • 1/2 cup dried fruit, chopped (optional)
  • For clumpy granola - 2 egg whites

Preparation

  1. For Loose Granola:
  2. Preheat oven to 300°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  3. In a large bowl or directly on the baking sheet, mix together oats, coconut, nuts or seeds, dried fruit, spice, and salt. (If using brown sugar, add here.)
  4. In a small bowl or measuring cup, mix together oil, liquid sweetener (such as honey, agave, maple syrup), and extract. Pour over dry ingredients and mix until thoroughly combined. (Don't be afraid to use your hands.)
  5. Spread oat mixture onto prepared baking sheet and bake until golden, 35-40 minutes, tossing twice during cooking.
  6. Remove from oven, store in an airtight container, and enjoy!
  7. For Clumpy Granola:
  8. Preheat oven to 275°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  9. In a large bowl or directly on the baking sheet, mix together oats, coconut, nuts or seeds, spice, and salt. (If using brown sugar or dried fruit, add here.)
  10. In a small bowl or measuring cup, mix together oil, liquid sweetener (such as maple syrup, agave, honey), and extract. Pour over dry ingredients.
  11. In a separate small bowl, whisk the egg whites until foamy. Add to oat mixture and mix until thoroughly combined.
  12. Spread mixture onto baking tray, leaving a hole in the center, so granola is around the edges of the pan like a big 'O'.
  13. Bake until golden, 35-45 minutes, but do not stir.
  14. Turn oven off and open oven door a bit. Leave granola to cool in the oven; it will firm up and the color will deepen.
  15. Once cool, break into chunks and store in an airtight container. Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from Recipe Tin Eats.

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