The last time I made this granola was Sunday evening. The kids were upstairs playing, and as soon as they started to smell the granola cooking they came running to the kitchen. They could barely wait until morning to get their hands on it. I was preparing it for the week ahead for quick and easy breakfasts. I also sent my husband to work with a big bag so he could keep some at his office.
Homemade granola is so much better than the granola you can buy in a bag, and it is surprisingly simple to make. Maybe it’s the love that makes it taste so much better, but I promise you it is well worth the small amount of effort. It makes a large batch, and is wonderful to have on hand for when you need something in a pinch. Plus anytime you can avoid something processed, it’s a big win in my book. My personal belief is that the best thing you can do for your health is to avoid anything in a box or bag.
Sending good vibes *~*
4 cups Gluten-Free Old Fashioned Rolled Oats, or regular Old Fashioned Rolled Oats if you prefer
1 cup blanched almonds, pounded into small pieces or chopped
½ cup unsweetened coconut shreds (optional)
½ cup sunflower seeds
½ cup pumpkin seeds
1/3 cup ground flax seeds
3 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
2/3 cup canola oil (I highly recommend organic for canola oil) *update – I now prefer to use melted coconut oil
2/3 cup maple syrup (It’s not vegan, but honey is also great. Also try a combination of 1/3 cup honey + 1/3 cup maple syrup, it’s fantastic too.)
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.
Lightly grease a large baking sheet (I first lined the baking sheet with a silpat and then greased it with a small amount of coconut oil).
If pounding out almonds, place almonds into a zip top bag, close the bag and place on a cutting board. Using a meat mallet or back of a frying pan, smash almonds into small pieces. Alternatively you can chop them.
In a large mixing bowl add oats, almond pieces, coconut (optional), sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, flax seeds, and cinnamon. Stir.
To the bowl, add vanilla extract, canola oil and maple syrup. Stir to evenly coat.
Evenly spread granola onto the greased baking sheet. Bake for 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes.
After the granola is done cooking, if your baking sheet is not lined with a silpat, quickly transfer granola to a piece of foil to cool.
Cool granola completely before storing or serving.
Store granola in an airtight container.
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