Chunky Homemade Granola {VIDEO}

UPDATE on May 23rd, 2014:

I posted this Chunky Homemade Granola recipe almost a year ago. Since then, I received a lot of comments and recommendations from my readers. With this update, I wanted to compile those notes that my readers shared with me with the hope that it will help you come up with the perfect homemade granola.
In addition, to help you visualize, I made a very quick video of how I made it. The video is at below the notes. The recipe is at the very end of this blog post.

NOTES:

  1. Coconut oil is a great substitute for vegetable oil: Coconut oil gives a very exotic smell and taste to the granola. Not to mention it is healthier.
  2. The time of baking varies: I received notes saying that it was done after 20 minutes. I made this over and over again in my kitchen and found that it takes between 30-35 minutes for it to turn light brown. However, I would highly recommend keeping a close eye on it after the 20-minute mark.
  3. Substitutions for nuts and dried fruits are totally okay: Though it is wonderful to have granola at home all the time, it may get boring easily. Feel free to substitute walnuts and almonds with macadamia nuts and cashews or other nuts you like. Same thing also works with dried fruits. You can be as creative as you want.
    Also, if you are a sesame seed lover, I would recommend adding toasted sesame seeds at the very end. I just did a batch with sesame seeds and it ended up being amazing.
  4. Other sweeteners: A couple of people suggested that they used agave, honey, and corn syrup instead of maple syrup. I tried agave and honey. They did turn out okay but I do not think they were as good as the granola made with maple syrup.
    If you are concerned with your sugar intake, you could add more dried fruits (perhaps one additional cup) and eliminate the brown sugar. However, keep in mind that it won’t be as sweet. I do that for my own granola and it goes perfect with fruity yogurt in the morning.Please continue to share your experiences with me so that I can update this list in the months/years to come.
    Thank you so much for reading and cooking with me. 

PS: This recipe yields 9-10 cups of granola. These Granola Top Banana and Coconut Muffins are a wonderful way to use 2 cups of your delicious homemade granola. :)

 

The original blog post:

Crunchy Homemade Granola

Okay. First things first.

Disclaimer:

I love, love, love blogging and chopping nuts, regardless of what it says below.  It may sound like I am complaining but I am not. It just sounds like that.

Blogging is fun but not an easy task. Especially if you are blogging about food…

You are the photographer, editor, web designer, author, cook, and the best part, DISHWASHER!
There is nothing like having to take pictures every 2 seconds to capture every detail about the food. If it normally takes 20 minutes to make a salad, for a new food blogger (like me) it takes 40 minutes. At the end, when you are finished with all the cooking and photo shooting, you really feel like there is no one on earth who deserves that food more than you do.

Oh also!

Let me tell you about this new thing that keeps me up at night; Foolproof Livings Facebook and Pinterest Page. Come to find out, when you open a Facebook account for a blog, it gives you statistical data like how many people clicked or viewed your posts. I cannot help but check my numbers, like every other minute. It is addictive.

It is crazy.

But good crazy.

I just want people to like my posts.
Can you please like my posts?
Please?

There is one exception to this and that is when you have a friend to cook, photograph and eat your food with. It is a huge bonus to have someone help you with all the craziness that comes with cooking for your blog.

That brings me to my dear friend Crsytal, my “partner in crime” in making this granola recipe.

Please meet Crystal.

Crunchy Homemade Granola

Crystal moved to Virgin Gorda around the same time we did. For a short while we were neighbors. I used to give her some of this granola every time I made it. She liked it so much that one day she asked me if we could make it together so that she can learn how to make it. Aaand we did. It was fun.

When I decided to make this granola for my blog, there was no better person than Crystal to make it with.

Crunchy Homemade Granola

It is wonderful to have someone help you with making this granola because there is so much “chopping” involved and if you do it by yourself, it may feel like forever.

Crunchy Homemade Granola

Don’t get me wrong! It is totally worth it. Mainly because this recipe makes about 9 cups of granola and as long as you keep it in an airtight container, you can enjoy it for up to 2 weeks.

In our household, between my husband and I, we finish it in 5 days.

Booooooooo…I know.  I know.

We just love granola.

I prefer to chop the nuts by hand because it gives you a superior texture and crunch. I promise, I tried it with my food processor and the results were not the same.

When it comes to the size of  nuts (or how much to chop), it totally is a personal preference. I like mine pretty coarse but if you like yours bigger, just go for it. Same goes for dried fruit.

One important thing that I want to bring to your attention is to make sure that you compress the oat mixture until it is very compact. To do that, we spread the oat mixture evenly onto a sheet pan and use the back of a ramekin to press it.

This step ensures that every single piece in the mixture sticks to one another, which in turn creates that “crunch” we all love.

Crunchy Homemade Granola

To store it I use small bags that I bought from Michaels. If I want to give it to someone as a gift (or as a part of a gift basket) I make a bow using cute ribbons to make it look pretty. Believe me, I have never met anyone who does not like a package with a bow.
Especially if it tastes this good…

Crunchy Homemade Granola

5.0 from 10 reviews
Chunky Homemade Granola
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 9 cups
 
Ingredients
  • ⅓ cup maple syrup
  • ⅓ cup packed brown sugar
  • 4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon table salt
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 5 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 cup walnuts, chopped
  • 1 cup raw almonds, chopped
  • ½ cup raisons, chopped
  • ½ cup cranberries, chopped
  • ½ cup goji berries, chopped
  • ½ cup dates, chopped
  • ½ cup unsweetened coconut flakes
Instructions
  1. Adjust the oven rack to upper middle position. Heat oven to 325 °F.
  2. Line your sheet pan with parchment paper. (it helps tremendously when it is time to clean.)
  3. Whisk maple syrup, brown sugar, vanilla, salt and oil in a BIG bowl.
  4. Add the oats, almonds and walnuts in to the liquid mixture and fold until thoroughly mixed.
  5. Transfer the oat mixture onto baking sheet and spread it to make an even layer.
  6. Using the back of a ramekin or a spatula, compress oat mixture until it is very compact.
  7. Bake for 30-35 minutes rotating pan once halfway through baking.
  8. Once baked, remove it from the oven and let it cool, at least for 1 hour.
  9. Break cooled granola into pieces of your desired size.
  10. Mix in the chopped dried fruit and shredded coconut.

Recipe adapted from America’s Test Kitchen

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Comments

  1. oooohhh…. This granola looks soooo good!!! Yum!!

  2. What a great idea to give this as a gift! I’m trying this recipe today!!

    • Ha ha.. Let me know how they turn out.
      I am working on a no sugar power bar recipe, thinking of you! Love you Cero! (a lot)

  3. This granola is the best!! I can’t wait for the power bar recipe. Your biggest fan :)

  4. Venecia Lopez says:

    Amazing Ayse!!! Fool proof, it works!! I tried this, made it and came out delicious!!!!!

    • Venecia.. Happy to hear that it worked for you. I am working on some healthy (quinoa) recipes. I will post them shortly..
      Stay tuned…
      Cheers my friend!

  5. Mary Lou says:

    Made this recipe this morning! And now I’m eating it! It’s delicious!! (I don’t want to know how many calories! :) )
    Can I freeze this granola?

    • Hi Mary Lou,

      I am so happy to hear that you liked it. This recipe is my go-to recipe for granola. It never fails.
      In terms of calories, I do not think that it is that bad. As long as you do not eat too much you should be fine…
      I have never tried freezing it. Doubt that it would freeze well…

      Cheers..
      Ice

  6. Googled a gazillion recipes and finally found yours with the perfect combination of ingredients and the least amount of oil and amazing pics! Its in the oven as I write – so excited. Thanks for sharing.

    • Dear Kamini,
      :)))
      I am so happy that you found my blog. I always try to put very little amount of oil in my food.
      Believe me, this granola recipe will not disappoint you..
      Cheers..
      Aysegul

  7. I will try this now without sugar and coconut oil instead of the vegetables. Let’s see how this turns out in the dehydrator :D

  8. shoma singh says:

    I was looking for the perfect granola recipe. And guess what , and yours is what I found. But I haven’t tried it yet. However what I do enjoy about this blog is not just finding the recipe. But the humor behind of it all. You really got me to want to try all your recipes. Keep your great work up.

    • Hi Shoma,

      You know what? You made my day.
      I am (everyday) cooking in the kitchen and trying my best to take great photos. It is tiring and sometimes exhausting. But then I get a comment like this aaaaannnd I am all up in the clouds.
      Thank you Thank you Thank you..
      Please try this granola, I promise you will LOVE it. :P

      Cheers & Love,

      Ice

  9. When do you add the coconut? Thanks

    • Ice,

      Thanks for answering my question. I held off on the coconut this round. Anyway, it came out AMAZING!! I used coconut oil as someone above mentioned, and it added such good flavor. Tonight I’m making a batch with some Red Mill Gluten Free oats for my gluten free friends. I’ll keep you posted! Thanks again.

      • Hi Travis,
        I am so happy to hear that it turned out good. This granola recipe is my absolute favorite.
        I love the idea of making it with coconut oil. I am sure it gave it a very fresh, coconuty flavor.
        Yes, please let me know how it turns out with gluten free oats.

        Thanks for stopping by!
        Cheers! Ice

  10. Did everyone who made this really bake it for 40 minutes? It was burning when I checked it at 20…. I followed the recipe – no modifications, oven at 325…

  11. Yay! NOw I will have unlimited fountain of granola! As long as I buy the ingredients…
    Thanks for recipe I will try it someday! I can eat a 3 kg bag in less than a week, maybe less.

    P.s.- Is Crystal… single? … jk! hehe
    Cya!

  12. SupaSteppy says:

    Just made this with a few adjustments, added a few different ingredients in lieu of the fruit like macadamias, pepitas and sesame seeds as hubby prefers his muesli fruit free, and used rice bran oil in place of the vegetable oil. The result? Amazing!! Won’t use another recipe again :D

    • Hi SupaSteppy,
      It is fantastic to hear that it turned out great. This granola recipe is really foolproof. The best part of it is that by using different nuts and dried fruit you can change it up easily.
      Thank you for stopping by!
      Cheers
      Ice

  13. I made this for the 100th time today and still loving it!!! The best granola recipe ever!

  14. Trossachsbird says:

    This is a great recipe! Been watching for a granola recipe that I like for years. This is it. Yum! Thank you

    • Hi Trossachsbird,
      Thank you!
      I love it too because it works every time.
      I have been working on perfecting a chocolate granola recipe for the last 2 weeks but I still cannot get the same results..
      Hopefully soon. :))

      Thanks for stopping by.
      Cheers!
      Ice

  15. Hi Ice!

    I made this granola, and it is amazing. My boyfriend especially can’t stop eating it – after I make it, he literally goes to bed saying, “Mmmm, granola for breakfast in the morning!” It’s simply delicious and made our whole apartment smell wonderful :)

    We used coconut oil instead of veggie oil, as others mentioned. We also subbed cashews for walnuts, and dried currants for the raisins/goji berries, just because that’s what we had on hand.

    Thank you so much for sharing this recipe!

    • Wonderful K Marie!!
      I think the coconut oil is such an amazing idea. I should update the recipe.
      Thank you so much for letting me know and visiting my blog.
      I really appreciate it.
      Cheers!
      Ice

  16. I was spending $5/ week on granola. Not only is this recipe so much more economical, but it tastes amazing! I’ve already shared the recipe with my neighbor who also loves it. Thank you for posting such a great recipe.

  17. Brittany says:

    I made 2 batches today (mixed all together in a HUGE bowl, up until I had to put them on trays for the oven). It worked out great! I used coconut oil, and pecans instead of the walnuts. I also didn’t have any maple syrup so I used a combo of agave and corn syrup, so it doesn’t have any maple flavor. I will buy that and try next time. I cut down by half on the sugar as I figured my sweeteners were sweeter than intended. The first batch was definitely over-toasted (but still edible) at 40 minutes, so I did the second for like 33. I still think it could have gone a little shorter. Maybe it is because I am at a high altitude? I also added a tablespoon or two of unsweetened cocoa powder to the second batch for fun. I couldn’t stop eating it while it was raw. Now I am too full of granola to try any with milk/yogurt tonight, but looking forward to breakfast for sure!

    • Hi Brittany,

      Oh wow.. I cannot thank you enough for this insight. This is really helpful especially because I am in the process of gathering all these notes to write an update for the recipe and the blog post.

      I think the time varies from place to place. I will definitely note this on the update.

      Also, I know what you mean when you say, “you couldn’t stop eating”.. :)
      Thank you once again for the insight!

      Cheers!

  18. Caroline R. says:

    I’ve tried so many kinds of granola for my kids in the morning… this is the best one I’ve ever had, and my kids definitely agree with me!!! We all love it, it’s my go-to recipe now! Thanks for sharing :)

  19. Hi! This recipe looks awesome! I was thinking of using this recipe for party favors at my wedding. Do you know how long it will keep? I am trying to find something that I can make in advance, as I am sure may hands will be full with other stuff the few weeks before.

    • Hi Mariko,

      Congratulations on your wedding. I can only imagine how busy you are..

      What a great idea to give these as party favors! Every one of my friends on the island got this in their Christmas basket last year and they loved it.
      To answer your question: As long as they are kept in airtight containers they are pretty fresh for up to 5 days. They are still okay after the end of a week but I think they loose some of their freshness after the 6th day.

      Please let me know if you have any other questions.

      Good luck with the wedding preparations…

      Cheers!
      Ice

  20. I have been making my own granola for four years. This rivals the recipe I’ve been using. Now i am now not the only one in the family who devours the homemade granola!!

  21. thank you so so much!! I love crunchy musly with hazelnuts and chocolate so much, but that was before i go vegan. since then i can’t possibly find any cereals that i can eat without having anything that comes from animals! its such a shame, and i really need a breakfast for everyday when i go to work! Plus i got tired of making an oatmeal cream(do i say it right? sorry english is not my first language!) way too soon! :/ with what kind of milk do you eat that? rize/almond is way too sweet for my taste, hazelnut was awsome but too expensive for an everyday use(4 euros!) and soya with a subtle sweet taste… still too sweet for my taste :( i tried buying a plain soya one just soya beans and water in it… too blunt but at least no sweet taste! i think it will blend well with the crunchy musli and some chocolate in it! ^_^ also, i need to find a cheaper substitute for maple suryl :/ i am afraid its too expensive for me right now :( i will rate your recipe 5 stars from now, but i am gonna try it tomorrow hopefully! ^_^

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