Healthy Granola

 

Prep Time: 5 minutes – Cook Time: 21 minutes – Total Time: 26 minutes – Yield 8 cups

Ingredients:

4 cups old-fashioned rolled oats (use certified gluten-free oats for gluten-free granola)

1 ½ cup raw nuts and or seeds (we used 1 cup pecans and ½ cup pepitas)

1 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt (if you’re using standard table salt, only use ¾ teaspoon)

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

½ cup melted coconut oil or olive oil (we used olive oil)

½ cup maple syrup or honey (we used pure maple syrup)

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

⅔ cup dried fruit, chopped if large

Totally optional additional mix-ins:  ½ cup chocolate chips (when granola completely cool or will melt) or one half cup coconut flakes* (add unsweetened coconut flakes halfway through baking).  Stir in up to 2 teaspoons of fresh orange zest for added flavor.

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the oats, nuts and or seeds, salt and cinnamon. Stir to blend.  Pour in the oil, maple syrup and or honey and vanilla. Mix well, until every oat and nut is lightly coated. Pour the granola into prepared pan and spread in an even layer.  Bake until lightly golden, about 21 to 24 minutes, stirring halfway The granola will further crisp up as it cools.

Let the granola cool completely.  If desired top with your choice of dried fruit (and chocolate chips if using).

Store the granola in an airtight container at room temperature for 1 to 2 weeks, or in a sealed freezer bag in the freezer for up to 3 months. The dried fruit can freeze solid, so let it warm to room temperature for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

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