The Perfect Granola

Granola recipe

We don't really do cereal in our house*.  I like breakfast to have more protein and less sugar and additives than your typical store bought cereal contains.  We have hens so lots of our breakfast are using fresh eggs, otherwise our typical brekkie is porridge, with all kinds of stuff mixed in, added as toppings or even on the side.  The present favourite involves bananas, brown sugar and cocoa nibs.  However, everyone needs a break now and then at which point we like to repurpose our oats into muesli and, the kids favourite, granola.

I always thought of granola as fancy American muesli, until my son Louis got really into it and I bought the stuff a couple of times from the supermarket.  Only to realise that what it is is, EXPENSIVE posh museli.  And I am sick to death of buying a box only to get it home and find it's only half full and barely enough for one breakfast.  So, I started making it myself, which is really not so onerous and at least that way we get to have exactly what we like in it.

I've tried a fair few recipes and now have a pretty clear idea of the "dried stuff to sticky stuff ratio", - I think this is the key to good granola.  Well that and salt!  So, take a look at the recipe below, but explore using your own favourite seeds, nuts, grains and dried fruits and let me know how you do. 

how to make granola

(makes 1 large Kilner jar)

40g coconut oil
150g Maple syrup - approx (120ml) or use honey, golden syrup, agave etc
a good pinch of sea salt

340g Grain - at least half is usually oats, but use the grain, or grains, of your choice, buckwheat, spelt, barley or rye flakes for example
200g mixed nuts, roughly chopped
50 - 100g mixed seeds, I use pumpkin, linseeds and sunflower seeds regularly in mine

1 large egg white, beaten

80-100g mixed chopped dried apricots, dates or dried fruit of your choice

Heat your oven to about 120 degrees and line a baking sheet with grease proof paper.
I've deliberately separated out the ingredients above as I think you need these basic proportions, but you can substitute whatever grains, nuts, seeds and dried fruit you prefer. 
how to make granola
The coconut oil, maple syrup and salt is the "sticky stuff" I was on about.  Combine them in a saucepan over a low heat, then remove from the heat and allow them to cool down while you put the dry ingredients, except the dried fruit, in a large bowl.
The 200 - 300g of nuts and seeds are entirely your own choice.  I like almonds and cashews, and use pumpkin seeds, linseeds and sunflower seeds regularly in mine.
Whip your egg white in a separate bowl until frothy.  The egg is supposed to make the mixture more crunchy, and I also like the addition of a bit more protein.
Then pour your cooled coconut oil, maple syrup mixture into the bowl of dried ingredients, mix well.  Add the egg white and mix well again.
Pour this mixture onto the baking sheet and press down a little, bake it for approximately 30 - 35 minutes, taking it out at least once to give it a bit of a stir, to make sure it is baked evenly.  Break up the mixture as much, or as little, as is your preference.  Don't over bake it; if your oven runs a little on the hot side, use a lower temperature and cook for longer.
While it's baking chop up the dried fruit - I use dried apricots, dates, figs and cranberries.  The reason you don't add this to the ingredients you are baking is that a bit of the fruit always seems to catch and burn.  There's nothing worse than a little burnt, sour bit of fruit in your granola.  It didn't occur to me until quite recently that the way round this is just don't add it until the end.
So after 30 minutes take your golden granola out of the oven, leave it to cool and then mix in the dried fruit.  Eat straight away and/ or store in an airtight tin or Kilner jar to get the most out of your efforts.  Not that mine has ever had to last fo r longer than a week; it gets poured over yoghurt and scoffed within a day or two.

granola recipe

*The one concession is to the Doves Farm Gluten Free Chocolate Stars.

Back to Top