Aug 9, 2010

Homemade Granola

Homemade Granola!

For the past few weeks I’ve made an assortment of quick breads or muffins for breakfast and I finally decided that I needed a little break. I turned to an equally wonderful and exciting early morning treat to accompany my breakfast yogurt: Granola! Homemade granola is one of the easiest things to make, yet it tastes so much different than anything you can buy in a grocery store. Sometimes it really makes you wonder what they did to doctor it up? Not only does it taste better when you make your granola, but it makes your kitchen smell incredibly delicious! The stove was certainly put to use yesterday after I made coconut macaroons, sally lunn bread, dinner and then rounding it all up with a double batch of granola! A wonderful day of baking with wonderful food to show for it!

Ok, well I’ll show you how fast this granola really is! First you need to gather the following:


(Adapted from Cooking Light. Makes about 4 1/2 cups granola)

  • 2 cups oats
  • 1/3 cup flaxseed
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds
  • 1/4 cup walnuts, chopped
  • 1/4-1/3 cup shredded coconut
  • 2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup orange juice
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoon canola oil
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries

Start with the wet ingredients. In a small saucepan, heat up the orange juice, honey and brown sugar. I do this at a medium to low heat and the goal is to allow the brown sugar to dissolve. Once the brown sugar has broken down and incorporated with the juice and honey, pour in the vanilla extract and canola oil. Give everything a good stir.

Liquid ingredients combined: orange juice, honey, brown sugar, vanilla extract and canola oil.

For the dry ingredients, it’s even easier! In a large mixing bowl, combine the oats, flax seed, almonds, walnuts, cranberries and cinnamon. Give it all a good toss.

Dry ingredients: oats, flax seed, walnuts, almonds, cranberries, and cinnamon.

Combine the wet and the dry ingredients by pouring the wet into the mixing bowl:

Wet and dry ingredients combined.

Spread the mixture evenly out on a baking sheet and preheat the oven to 300 degrees.

Granola ready for the oven!

Let the granola cook for about 10 minutes and then bring it out and toss everything around with a wooden spoon. You want things evenly cooked and you don’t want anything to cook to your pan so this is an important step! You may also find that you want to rotate your baking sheet. I usually cook mine for about 30 minutes total, moving things around at 10 minute intervals. Once things start to get golden brown and tasty, take the granola out and let it cool on the baking sheet. This is when it’ll start to get really crunchy!

That’s pretty much all there is to putting homemade granola together! Little work, little fuss and little clean up! BUT you win with a batch of delicious smelling and tasting granola! How could you resist not making this?! I think granola is also fun to make because you can literally put whatever you want into the mix. Throw in any nut or dried fruit that happens to be your favorite and make your granola specialized for you! It’s great as a snack, for breakfast alone or as a topping for granola, fruit or anther cereal. I’m a personal fan of topping my yogurt or cereal with the granola.

Honey nut cheerios and granola: a perfect pair!

That to me is a bowl of goodness that is going to start my day off perfectly! For now, that’s homemade granola…in the shell of a nut!

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