Making your own granola at home is so easy. My hubby love cereal and eats it almost daily as an evening snack. I refuse to buy commercial cereal, even organic, anymore because (a) it’s expensive, and (b) it doesn’t fall into my definition of “real food“. So, I had to find a substitute to keep hubby happy, and so far, this recipe has done the trick! You can substitute whatever nuts, seeds, dried fruit, or other goodies you have on hand. This just happens to be the combo that has worked well for me. You can double or triple this recipe if needed, or you can halve it or quarter it if it’s too much.
Important note: I am completely aware that oats really don’t provide much nutrition, especially if they’re not soaked. However, I have not had much luck soaking and dehydrating oats (though I know it can be done), so I do use unsoaked oats in this recipe. I pick my battles, and if it means that someone will skip the store bought junk and eat homemade cereal (even if the oats aren’t soaked), then I’m happy with that. Even with the oats, they’re getting more nutrition from this than a bag of granola from the store. If you have problems digesting oats, then you might want to skip this recipe, or maybe just leave the oats out and use all of the other ingredients. Just my two cents
Fruit and Nut Granola with Chia Seeds and Coconut
8 cups old fashioned oats
2 cups shredded coconut
1 cup dried cranberries
1 cup dried cherries
1 cup golden raisins
1 cup walnuts, (soaked if possible)
1 cup sliced almonds, (soaked if possible)
1 cup sunflower seeds, (soaked if possible)
1 cup pumpkin seeds, (soaked if possible)
1 cup chia seeds
2 cups coconut oil
1 cup honey
2 tsp. vanilla
2 heaping tbsp. cinnamon
Preheat oven to 250 degrees.
In a saucepan, melt the coconut oil and honey together over low heat and whisk until combined. Stir in the vanilla and remove from heat. In a huge bowl (or two large bowls if you don’t have a huge bowl ) place the oats, nuts, seeds, dried fruit, and coconut. Sprinkle the cinnamon over the dry mixture and stir to combine. Pour the honey/coconut oil mixture over the dry ingredients and stir until everything is coated. Grease some baking sheets (I have to use 3 baking sheets for a full batch) with coconut oil, pour the granola mixture onto a baking sheet, and spread out into a single layer. Bake for one hour, stirring occasionally. You want the granola to be golden brown. The granola will still seem wet when you take it out after an hour, but it dries out and gets crunchy after it sits. Careful not to overcook it, as the dried fruit gets a weird burnt flavor. I learned that the hard way, unfortunately.
Store the cereal in a glass jar in the fridge to keep it fresh and keep the nuts and seeds from going rancid.