One of my absolute favorite snacks is Greek Yogurt with granola; toss in a handful of fresh blueberries and that is my heaven in a bowl. I LOVE granola!
For a long time I was just buying Nature Valley Granola bars and crushing them with a mallet and dumping that into my yogurt. Convenient, yes, however I’m not a fan of the added sugar and the ingredients that I can’t pronounce. So, in my attempt to adhere to a ‘cleaner’ diet I started experimenting with homemade granola recipes. I found A TON of different recipes on Pinterest. My goal with my recipe was that I wanted to keep it as clean as possible, and use natural sugar sources such as honey and apple sauce. After reviewing several recipes, I started putting mine together.
Attempt #1 – Not enough spices, oven temp too hot and baked too long, burned it a bit.
Attempt #2 – Added more spices, cooked better with lower heat, tasted better but not quite right.
Attempt #3 – Ran out of applesauce so I made my own; spices and flavoring good, added almond extract, tasted good and cooked perfect, still not quite right.
Attempt #4 – PERFECTION!
Now I want to share the recipe that I’ve come up with as my tested and perfect homemade granola, I’ll also be sharing my recipe for easy homemade applesauce in a separate post later.
Here is what you need:
First the dry ingredients.
Mix those up.
Then start on the ‘sauce’:
Add the honey.
Whisk those together.
Add the flavor and spice.
Add the applesauce.
Whisk it one more time.
The stick your face over the bowl and take a deep breath…I dare you not to. Your mouth will start to water here.
Pour the mixture of the oat mixture…
add mix that up.
Spread onto a parchment covered baking sheet…
But you’re not done yet!
Add the dried fruit if you are using it…
and mix that in.
Then spread it out on the covered baking sheet again to let it cool.
Homemade Granola (Makes approx. 8 cups)
- 3 Cups Old Fashioned Oats
- ½ Cup Wheat Bran
- ½ Cup Flax-Seed Meal
- 1 Cup Raw Sunflower Seeds
- ½ Cup Natural (No Sugar Added) OR Homemade Simple Applesauce
- 1/3 Cup Honey
- 1/3 Cup Coconut Oil (unrefined)
- 2 Tbsp Cinnamon
- 2 tsp Vanilla
- 1 tsp Almond Extract
- ¼ tsp Sea Salt
- 2 Cups Dried Fruit of your choice (I used raisins & dried cranberries)
Preheat oven to 300⁰. In a large bowl, combine oats, wheat bran, flax-seed meal, sunflower seeds and salt. In a separate bowl melt coconut oil (about 30-40 seconds in the microwave, or you can melt on the stove-top in a small pan.) Add honey and whisk until combined well. Add vanilla, almond extract and cinnamon to coconut & honey mixture. Whisk until combined. Whisk in applesauce. Pour sauce over oat mixture and stir until everything is covered. Cover a large baking sheet with parchment paper and spread granola to an even layer on baking sheet. (Reserve large bowl for later.) Bake for (about) 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes. Once granola is done baking, pour back into large bowl and add dried fruit, stir until mixed in well. Carefully dump the granola back onto the parchment covered baking sheet to cool. Enjoy!