1. First and foremost, granola is delicious
You’re probably reading this article because you love granola. If that’s not the case, then try making these cinnamon rolls instead? For everyone else, granola is basically deserves its own section of the food pyramid. You can have it for breakfast, as a snack, with things, by itself, the possibilities are nearly endless.
2. Prepared granola is so expensive!
Let’s face it, everyone has that one brand of granola that they prefer over the other ones. Of course that one brand is also the most expensive. Making your own granola really isn’t as expensive as you think. Half of the ingredients you probably already own, and the other half you can find in the bulk section of your grocery store or heath food store. If you don’t have a bulk food section in your normal grocery store, I would highly recommend finding a heath food store. I made this recipe for less than $10 at Whole Foods!
3. It’s completely customizable
There’s a basic ratio you need to follow for granola but other than that, you can do whatever you want – within reason. You can swap out the oats for another grain, quinoa anyone? Feel free to cut the sugar levels if you don’t want your granola that sweet. I decided not to put any fruit in my granola, but go crazy!
4. It’s full of healthy ingredients
Granola is full of whole grains, dried fruit, and fatty nuts. All of these ingredients are incredibly heathy, and you should be eating them daily. If you had the option to either eat a bowl of oatmeal or a bowl of granola with milk for breakfast, a lot of people would pick the granola. Granola is a great snack to bring on hikes because you are not only getting the slow releasing starches from the oats, but also the protein and fat from the nuts, and the simple sugars from the sweeteners and fruit.
5. Granola can last for a while
This recipe makes between 4 and 5 cups of granola, depending on what you put in and what you keep out. Granola stored in an airtight container will easily last a few weeks. I’ve also read that you can store it in the fridge or freezer, but I feel like granola doesn’t last that long… because you eat it too quickly. Store it on the counter, or on your desk at work, for those moments when you want a healthy, delicious snack.
- 3 cups rolled oats (not quick cooking)
- 1 cup chopped almonds
- 1/2 cup raw pumpkin seeds
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil, plus more for greasing
- 1/4 cup maple syrup or honey
- Thoroughly grease a rimmed sheet pan with vegetable oil. Do not use a pan without sides or you will have granola in your oven for months. Preheat the oven to 300°F.
- In a large bowl, mix the oaks, almonds, pumpkin seeds, cinnamon, and salt.
- In a small bowl, whisk the oil, honey, and vanilla. Using a spatula, pour the wet mixture into the dry ingredients and toss until completely coated.
- Spread evenly on the prepared baking sheet, pressing down to encourage clumping. Bake until golden brown, about 30-35 minutes. Toss the granola every 10-15 minutes to ensure even browning.
- Remove the granola from the oven. If you want larger clumps allow it to cool and then break up with a spatula. Store in an airtight container.
Yields 4-5 cups. Store in an airtight container for up to a month.