Jeff, my DH, often likes to have granola for breakfast. He is a rock-star of a quilter husband (I’ll tell you more about that another day!), and I really like cooking up things that he enjoys – my little “thank you, Sweetie” for all the wonderfully helpful things he does for me!
So, I’m going to share my recipe* with you. (*As I’ve mentioned before, to me, recipes are merely guidelines. I like to mix it up (pun intended), experiment, and have fun with cooking. I invite you to do the same!)
Pre-heat over to 225 degrees F. Lightly grease one large roasting pan (mine is approx. 12 x 18 x 3″ or two 9×13″ cake pans (I usually use coconut oil).
Rolled Oats: 10-15 C. ( I use organic purchased from the bulk bins at Whole Foods)
Nuts: 2-3 C. of your favorite nut / seed (I often use a combination of slivered almonds and cashew pieces – and no walnuts because Jeff is allergic! However, if you aren’t plagued with nut allergies, walnuts are also good, as are sunflower seeds, or any other nut or seed that you like………and aren’t allergic to!)
Honey: around 2.5 lbs. (I buy local whenever possible. Support those local bees!)
Butter: 1/2 pound (I generally use salted because I likely have it on hand; unsalted is fine.)
Vanilla: 2 tsp.
Place butter and honey in a medium to large saucepan. Heat on low to low-medium – stirring occasionally – until the butter is melted. Allow the mixture to continue to heat on low until it comes to a full rolling boil. This will likely take 7 – 10 minutes or so.
While the butter and honey mixture is heating up, combine 10 C. of rolled oats and the 2 – 3 C. of nuts in a LARGE mixing bowl. My mixing bowl is GINORMOUS! 12 qts.!!! As you can see, your bowl needn’t be that large. However, I love my huge bowl!!!
Remove from heat, add vanilla, and immediately pour the mixture into the bowl with the rolled oats and nuts. Stir together until well-mixed. If the oats are quite wet and gooey or if there seems to be excess liquid, stir in more rolled oats, one cup at a time. When all is said and done, we tend to like our granola to be a little “chewy”, so 11-12 C. of rolled oats is usually good for us. If you like your granola to be more “crunchy”, you may end up using as much as 13-15 C. of rolled oats. Whatever the amount of oats, be sure to stir them until they are evenly coated with the butter and honey mixture.
The granola will need to bake for a total of one-hour, 20 minutes to one hour, 40 minutes, AND it will need to be stirred every 20 minutes. So, set your timer for 20 minutes and wash the dishes, or read, or hand-stitch…..until it’s time to thoroughly stir the granola. Repeat every 20 minutes until the granola turns a lovely golden-brown color. NOTE: if you have made your granola fairly wet, like I do, it will not turn very golden brown.
When your granola is done, remove from the oven and cool in the pan on a rack for 15 – 20 minutes. Then, pour granola out onto a clean dish towel to cool completely. Nibble (quality control!!!) and store in an airtight container.
I’ve added dried fruit pieces to the container of granola – see variations below!
- After the Basic Granola has cooled, I almost always add 2-3 C. of dried fruit (cherries, cranberries, blueberries, raisins, craisins, etc. – a single fruit or any combination.)
- Peanut-butter granola: after the butter and honey mixture has boiled for one minute, remove from stove, stir in vanilla and 1 C. of creamy or chunky peanut butter until well mixed. Then pour over rolled oats mixture and proceed as described in the Basic Granola instructions.
- Once the peanut butter granola has cooled, a couple cups of carob nibs, dark chocolate chips, white chocolate chips, milk chocolate chips, or whatever….. can be added. YUM!
Enjoy your granola!!!