If you get a craving for homemade granola but don’t know where to start, here’s a little secret: it’s easier than you think. With just a few ingredients from your pantry and less than 40 minutes from start to finish, you will find that the only difficult is keeping your family from nibbling it before you get some.
Homemade Granola? You Bet!
Originally, I got my inspiration from PBS Parents (PBSParents.com) and a video made by Farm to Table Family. (See Video below) In the time it took for the song, approximately three minutes or so, the granola was completely assembled and ready to go into the oven.
I was amazed at the ease at which one could make homemade granola, and I decided to give it a try for myself. Unfortunately, I was missing one of the key ingredients: apple sauce. So rather than worrying, I got out a jar of peach and apricot preserves. It had the consistency of apple sauce and just as much fruity flavor.
In addition, the mom in the video added cherries. Being a chocolate lover myself, I opted to include chocolate-covered raisins, whole walnuts and dried dates. I know that this seems over the top but the result was fabulously decadent.
So, what does my family think about my homemade granola? The proof is that it doesn’t have a long shelf-life. So now that you know how easy it is to make granola, what are you waiting for?
Video: PBS Parents “Farm to Family” How to Make Homemade Granola
Prep time: Approx. 5 minutes
Cook time: 40-50 minutes
Ready in: Approx. 60 minutes
Yields: 6-12 Servings
2 1/2 cups of Quick Oats
1 cup of nuts or almonds
2 cups of dried fruit
1 cup of chocolate covered raisins
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 cup Sarabeth’s Peach Apricot Preserves
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
1/4 cup honey
Preheat your oven to 300 degrees F. Prepare a 9 x 13 cookie sheet or pan lined with one layer of parchment paper.
In a large bowl add the ingredients as they are listed above.
As you add each ingredient, stir well.
Finally, when you add the honey (See Kitchen Tip Below) make sure that all of the ingredients are fully coated.
Then, with a spatula or sturdy spoon, transfer the granola onto the parchment-lined pan, spreading it out in a single layer. If the granola seems to be overly sticky, you can spray your spatula or spoon with non-stick spray.
Place the pan in the oven.
Every 10 minutes or so, flip the granola as best as you can. This will help “dry” the granola.
After about 40 minutes take the pan out of the oven and check the granola for doneness. The granola will be sticky but it should look golden brown. If it still looks “wet” then put it in the oven no more than 10 minutes.
Remove from oven and place pan on a rack to cool for five (5) minutes.
Next, carefully grab a hold of the parchment paper and transfer the granola to a rack to cool. If you do not have a rack, you can place it on another cookie sheet to cool.
Once cooled about 15 minutes, break up any large chunks.
When your granola is completely cooled (approximately one (1) hour) you can place it in a sealed storage container or plastic bag.
Kitchen Tip: When measuring “sticky” ingredients, like honey, spray your measuring cup with a non-stick spray before filling. This will allow the ingredient to be released from the sides of the measuring cup, thus giving you a perfect measurement.
Ways to Use Your Homemade Granola
Besides using your granola as a finger-loving snack, you can also use it to top Greek yogurt and ice cream. You can even use it as a “crumb” on muffins, sweet breads and cobblers. However you use it, your Homemade Granola will add a bit of crunchiness and sweetness–something that I’m certain you’ll enjoy.
How to Store Your Granola
Granola is notorious for drying out and getting hard if left out or improperly uncovered. Don’t let this happen to you. Pack it up in a tight storage container to offer you many days of deliciousness. And, don’t forget that you can use more specialized containers for gift-giving.
HINT: Use a small glass jar that has a latch seal, tie with a simple ribbon, add a note and you will have the perfect gift for a guest, ailing friend or neighbor.
Here are some great storage containers to keep your granola fresher, longer:
Bormioli Rocco Fido Latch Lid Canning Jar Latched jars like this one is by far my favorite type of jar to put in Homemade Granola. Not only is it easily resealable but it looks great for my countertop or even for gift giving. (See HINT above)
Kinetic Go Green Containers When you need a utilitarian set of resealable containers, I go green whenever I can. This set is perfect because it is stackable and doesn’t take up a lot of space.
Snapware Glasslock Glass Storage Containers I’m all for variety of sizes because when I bake or cook, sometimes the food that I think will fit in a square container is best served in a round one. That is why I love this set because it offers me the benefit of both worlds.
Copyright © 2013 by Deb Melian, Dial M for Moms, www.dialmformoms.com All rights reserved.