In this blog post, we’ll take you on a journey to create your own batch of nutty homemade granola. Bursting with natural goodness and a medley of flavors, this recipe will elevate your breakfast and snacks to a whole new level. Join us as we explore the art of making granola from scratch, packed with nutritious ingredients and customizable to suit your taste preferences. Let’s dive in and make some scrumptious granola together!
Origin and history
The origin of granola can be traced back to the 19th century when it was first created as a health food. The credit for inventing granola is often given to Dr. James Caleb Jackson, a vegetarian and health advocate who ran a sanitarium in upstate New York in the 1860s. He created a mixture of baked whole grains, nuts, and dried fruits, which he called “granula” at the Jackson Sanitarium in 1863.
Later, fifteen years after Jackson, John Harvey Kellogg, developed a similar recipe and called it also “granula”, as part of his health regimen for his sanitarium patients, in the late 1870s. However, a legal dispute with Dr. Jackson over the use of the name “granula” led Kellogg to change the name to “granola.”
In the late 1960s and early 1970s, granola gained popularity among the hippie and health food movements. It was embraced as a nutritious and natural food option, and various commercial brands started producing granola for mass consumption.
Today, granola is enjoyed worldwide as a versatile and nutritious breakfast cereal, snack, or topping for yogurt and desserts. Its history is rooted in health and simplicity, making it a beloved choice for health-conscious individuals and food enthusiasts alike.
Tips and notes
Here are some tips and notes to ensure a successful homemade granola recipe:
- Opt for rolled oats, nuts, and dried fruits without any added sugar or preservatives for the best flavor and texture.
- The granola is made of oats, nuts (we’ve used almonds, hazelnuts, and walnuts), dried fruits (we’ve used raisins, apricot, prunes, and shredded coconut), and seeds (we’ve used sesame seeds), but feel free to customize the recipe to suit your preferences. To create your favorite flavor combinations, you can add various
- nuts: almonds, walnuts, pecans, cashews, hazelnuts, and pistachios.
- dried fruits: raisins, dried cranberries, dried apricots, dried apples, dried cherries, dried blueberries, dried mango, shredded coconut, banana chips, and dried pineapple.
- seeds: Chia Seeds, Flaxseeds, Pumpkin Seeds, Sunflower Seeds, and Sesame Seeds.
- You can also add dried fruits after baking to avoid them becoming too chewy or overcooked.
- Use natural sweeteners like honey, maple syrup, date molasse (in our case), or agave nectar to add sweetness to the granola. Avoid using refined sugars for a healthier option.
- Choose a neutral-flavored oil like coconut oil or grapeseed oil for a light and crisp texture and to bind the ingredients together without overpowering the flavors. Avoid using olive oil, as its strong flavor can overpower the granola.
- You can experiment with different flavors and textures. Incorporate warm spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, ground, ginger, cloves, or cardamom to add depth and complexity to your granola. You can also add other flavors such as vanilla extract, almond extract, lemon/orange zest, cocoa, or chocolate chips. In our, case we’ve added cocoa and dark chocolate for a chocolatey flavor.
- Be sure to line the pan with parchment paper so the sweetener sticks to your oats rather than the pan.
- Spread the granola mixture evenly on the baking sheet to ensure even baking. Clumps of granola may not bake properly and can result in uneven texture.
- Stir the granola during baking to prevent it from burning and to ensure even toasting. For maximum clumps, gently press down on the granola with the back of a spatula after stirring the mixture at the halfway baking point.
- One of the trickiest aspects of baking granola is determining the perfect doneness. To achieve the best results, use a low oven temperature, which allows the granola to dry out evenly without the risk of over-baking. Remember that the granola may not appear completely dry as soon as it comes out of the oven; it will continue to dry as it cools. For the ideal doneness, remove it from the oven when it takes on a light toasted appearance and emits a delightful aroma of cooked honey. The goal is to achieve a warm and toasty scent, indicating that it’s ready to be enjoyed.
- Allow the granola to cool completely on the baking sheet before transferring it to an airtight container. This will help it become crispy and crunchy.
Feel free to experiment with different ingredients and flavors to create your perfect granola recipe. Some combination ideas for homemade Granola are:
- Honey-Almond: Almonds, honey, and a hint of cinnamon for a classic and delicious combination.
- Maple-Pecan: Pecans, maple syrup, and a touch of vanilla for a rich and indulgent flavor.
- Coconut-Mango: Dried mango, shredded coconut, and a sprinkle of cardamom for a tropical twist.
- Chocolate-Banana: Banana chips, cocoa powder, and dark chocolate chunks for a decadent treat.
- Peanut Butter-Chocolate: Peanut butter, cocoa powder, and chocolate chips for a nutty and chocolatey flavor.
- Cranberry-Orange: Dried cranberries, orange zest, and a drizzle of orange juice for a tangy and refreshing taste.
- Apple-Cinnamon: Dried apples, ground cinnamon, and a touch of maple syrup for a comforting and cozy flavor.
- Cherry-Almond: Dried cherries, almonds, and a splash of almond extract for a delightful combination.
Enjoy the granola as a breakfast cereal with milk or yogurt, or as a topping for smoothie bowls and ice cream.
- Overnight Oats;
- Chia Seed Pudding;
- Rice Cakes;
- Energy Bars;
- Italian Panforte;
- Chinese Eight Treasure Congee;
- Iranian Khoshaf;
- Indian Chivda;
Crunchy Granola: Your Guide to Making Delicious Homemade Granola
- 250 g oats (3 cups)
- 150 g nuts: almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts (1 cup)
- 75 g dried fruits; raisins, dried apricots, dried prunes (½cup)
- 25 g shredded coconut (⅓ cup)
- 30 g sesame seeds (2 tbsp)
- 60 ml date molasses (4 tbsp)
- 60 ml oil (4 tbsp)
- 15 g cocoa (1 tbsp)
- 50 g dark chocolate (¼ cup)
- ½ tsp salt
- Preheat your oven to 325°F (160°C) and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the rolled oats, salt, and cocoa. Mix well to ensure an even distribution of ingredients.
- In a separate small bowl, whisk together the date molasses and oil.
- Pour the wet mixture over the dry ingredients and stir until everything is well coated.
- Spread the granola mixture in an even layer on the prepared baking sheet.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes, stirring gently every 5 minutes through baking time to ensure even toasting.
- Meanwhile, in a large bowl, mix together the dried fruits, shredded coconut, nuts, sesame seeds, and chocolate chips.
- When the granola has baked for 15 minutes, remove it from the oven and add the mixed ingredient to the baked oats.
- If you prefer your granola clumpy, press it down with a spatula after stirring halfway through baking.
- Cook for another 5-10 minutes, or until the granola is golden brown.
- Once the granola is done baking, remove it from the oven and let it cool completely on the baking sheet. It will continue to crisp up as it cools.
- Transfer the homemade granola to an airtight container and store it at room temperature for up to two weeks.
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