It’s hard to go wrong when you offer a healthy granola (made in your own kitchen) for an on-the-go breakfast. It’s crunchy and sweet, inexpensive and convenient. Best of all, you get to choose what is (and what is not) in the cereal!
I’ve used a few different granola recipes over the years. This one is our family favorite. Not only is it low-fat, it’s also quick and easy to make in a large batch (over a gallon of granola at a time!).
Granola – Family Sized Batch
12 cups whole rolled oats (steel-cut and quick-cooking don’t work well)
1 ½ c. brown sugar 2 c. coconut (I use unsweetened coconut chips, but sweetened shredded coconut works too)
2/3 c. frozen concentrated apple juice
2/3 c. honey
½ c. flax seed meal (opt.)
1 T. cinnamon
½ t. sea salt
* Put all the ingredients in a very large bowl and stir until well mixed. * Pour the granola mix onto a large baking sheet. I use a 12 x 17 pan, coated with non-stick cooking spray or lined with parchment paper brushed with oil/butter. * Spread the mixture out as flat as possible for even baking. (You will need to bake 2 or 3 pans worth of granola for this size of a batch!) * Bake at 375 degrees F until lightly toasted (about 15 minutes). * Turn the mixture at least once while cooking to help it brown evenly. * Let it cool, and then store it in an air-tight container. * As a treat, we sometimes add slivered almonds and/or craisins to the baked granola.
* There are lots of ways to change/enhance this recipe (or any other granola recipe you find). One website includes the following add-ins as options: • Dried fruit: raisins, cranberries, cherries, blueberries, figs, dates, apricots, coconut flakes • Nuts: almonds, walnuts, pecans, peanuts, cashews • Seeds and grains: pumpkin, flax and sesame seeds, toasted wheat germ • Special extras: crystallized ginger, candied orange peel, sea salt, almond and vanilla extract • Spices: cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, cloves, cardamom, ginger
My recommendation is that you start with the recipe above and then choose one or two add-in options each time you make a new batch. Don’t try too many at once. You don’t want to overwhelm the mix (with flavor or calories).
* Oats are naturally gluten-free—but cross-contamination is a problem. If you have someone in your home that is GF, look for a brand (such as Bob’s Red Mill) that guarantees the oats GF.
Go, go granola!
P.S. Just one more thought: How about Ho, Ho Granola!
Granola for Gifts!!
Since Christmas is only two weeks away,
why not make up a ‘family sized batch’ of granola,
include a few extra ‘add-ins’, and then package up portions
in cellophane bags, tied with ribbon,
to give to some special people on your gift list…
the mailman, your neighbor, your child’s teacher, etc.
Include a personal note telling the recipient
how much you appreciate them.
It’ll make their day!