I finally started making my own granola and now I’m really wondering what took me so long. In my mind I imagined it being fairly time consuming and complicated, but that was just me being lazy. Honestly, after realizing that my advisor makes her own granola regularly and she’s one of the busiest people I know- I truly realized that I was just being lazy (thanks Joy!). The typical ‘why make my own when I can just buy a box of it or get it in the bulk section?’ My obsession with eating cereal and granola used to take up a large portion of my food budget, but by making my own I have decreased my spending and actually enjoy the homemade version a million times more. I’m on a extra tight student budget now (not that my budget was much before) so this has really helped out.
Reasons for making your own granola:
- Save $$$
- Reduce waste (think of all the packaging- plastic!)
- Reduce energy use
- Less time spent reading ingredient lists
- Make it specific to your taste / allergies
- and lots more I don’t feel like typing
I’ve adapted this recipe from Robin Roberton’s 1000 Vegan Recipes – an excellent book that is worth adding to your collection.
- 5 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats (not instant!)
- 1 cup chopped or slivered raw almonds (or nuts of your choice)
- 1/2 cup raw shelled sunflower seeds
- 1 cup raisins
- 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
- 3/4 cup pure maple syrup
- 1 – 2 tablespoons of molasses (depends on how much you like this stuff, start with 1T and go from there)
- 1/2 – 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground all spice
- 1/4 teaspoon cardamom (optional, I just love this stuff)
- Pinch of salt
Note: mix and match ingredients – add your favorite nuts, seeds, grains, spices and dried fruit.
Makes approximately 8 cups- I use a commercial sized baking sheet, but you may want to: cut this recipe in half the first time making it or use two baking sheets.
- Preheat oven to 325F.
- Evenly spread the oats, chopped almonds and sunflower seeds on the baking sheet. You don’t need to add oil or anything like that.
- Bake for 10 minutes.
- While it’s baking, prep your other ingredients: In a medium sized bowl, combine the raisins, coconut, cinnamon, allspice, salt and any other spices/ ingredients of your choice.
- In a glass measuring cup, measure out the maple syrup and add the molasses to this cup as well.
- Remove the other items from the oven and reduce temperature to 300F.
- Add all dry ingredients to the pan, mix them up.
- Drizzle the syrup and molasses onto the dry ingredients, stir together until everything seems decently coated.
- Return to oven and bake for 15 minutes (or until crisp). Don’t burn it!
- Remove from oven. It may seem sticky but as it cools it will become more crispy and less sticky. Using a spatula, stir the granola- this will prevent it from sticking to the pan as it cools. Then let cool completely – half hour or so.
- Transfer to an air-tight container and it’s delicious and good to eat for weeks.
- Enjoy with your favorite vegan yogurt, nut milk or on its own as a snack.
Perfect to take camping or to enjoy on long hikes!