A few years ago I was home sick from work with the flu. In my misery, I experienced a brief moment of hope where I emerged from a mountain of covers and kleenex to attempt to boost my spirits in the kitchen. I knew the one thing that would make me feel better was granola. I’ve always loved its heartiness and vibrant, sweet scent when it’s baking. I love that it has 16 times more protein than box cereal so you can enjoy a bit less and feel satisfied a bit more. And I love that it lends itself perfectly to yogurt parfaits.
So I mustered the energy to scuttle downstairs to our 1950s style kitchen on the sunny, chilly winter day that it was and baked up a batch. This is a variation of that original recipe, which I still make today. Bundled in my blankets fashioned as an oversized dress and my furry slippers that many concerned friends have since convinced me to throw away, I stood there in the kitchen with sunlight streaming through the windows and sweet granola scent filling the air. Still groggy from my meds, I managed to have the thought, “Wouldn’t it be nice if I could just stay home and bake granola for people all day?” While that dream hasn’t been completely fulfilled, I am getting closer with my role on Minimalist Baker. So thanks for tagging along and following what we do. You guys are pretty stinking awesome.
I love that I get to play with ingredients in recipes like this one. It’s like I get to be a mad scientist in a sense, but with a pyrex and spatula instead of flask and tongs. To this batch I added pecans, cocoa powder and subbed coconut oil for canola. I was super pleased with the result as it came out smelling like coconut heaven, was just sweet enough, and basically consisted of half nuts half oats – yum.
By the time you read this post this granola is likely gone (#momentofsilence). But it was excellent while it lasted and you can trust that I’ll be back in the kitchen dreaming up another batch soon – sick day or not.
- 3 cups rolled oats
- 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flake
- 1 cup almonds
- 1 cup pecans
- 1/4 cup craisins [or other dried fruit]
- 3 Tbsp. sugar
- ¼ tsp of salt
- 1/2 Tbsp. ground cinnamon
- 1 Tbsp cocoa powder (optional)
- 1/4 cup extra virgin coconut oil
- 1/3 cup + 2 Tbsp honey (sub maple syrup or agave for vegan)
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 340.
- Mix the oats, coconut, cinnamon, sugar, cocoa powder, salt, and nuts together in a large bowl.
- In a small saucepan over medium low heat, warm the coconut oil, honey and vanilla extract and pour over the dry ingredients and mix well.
- Spread the mixture evenly onto a baking sheet (may take two batches) and bake for 20-25 minutes, stirring a bit near the halfway point. The coconut oil will help this granola crisp up nicely but be sure to watch it carefully as it browns quickly.
- Add the craisins to the baking sheet in the last few minutes of cooking, so they don’t get hard.
- Once the granola is visibly browned (about 23 minutes for me), remove from the oven and scoop into a bowl to let it cool. Place in a container that has an air-tight seal and it should keep for a few weeks.
If you’d rather use canola or another oil, that’s fine. Just adjust your cooking time as needed (you’re going for the deep golden brown color).