Homemade granola is one of those things that almost makes you feel duped the first time you make it. You start questioning everything about your life: if homemade granola is ten times tastier and 5 times cheaper than store bought granola…then what else am I doing wrong?!
It makes a respectable breakfast, sprinkled onto yogurt, hot cereal or chia pudding. I’ve also decided it is also completely appropriate to shove it in your face by the fistful, any time of day.
I started playing with this recipe a couple years ago, originally from Kim Boyce’s Good to the Grain. It’s extremely versatile, and works well with any permutation of ingredient swaps: honey instead of maple syrup; rolled rye or barley instead of oats; butter or olive oil instead of coconut oil; and any kind of seed and any kind of dried fruit. It’s a beautiful, beautiful thing.
Coconut oil, the newest darling to the world of culinary fats, is also some good stuff. I like to buy organic, virgin coconut oil, which smells like vacation, aka tropical locales and fruity day-drinking by the pool.
It’s chock full of saturated fat, specifically medium chain fatty acids, which sounds scary but emerging research suggests coconut oil may have a beneficial effect on cholesterol levels. Most experts agree that there isn’t quite enough scientific evidence to start swimming in the stuff, but swapping it out for butter or olive oil in cooking every now and then is perfectly fine.
As long as you have a solid 45 minutes to hang out in the kitchen to make sure the syrup doesn’t boil over on the stove and toasted nuts don’t burn, you will be golden. And crunchy. And sweet. Life as you know it will never be the same.
Triple Coconut Granola
I like using dates because they have such a mellow, caramel flavor that doesn’t overpower the granola.
Makes 16, ½ cup servings
300g (3 cups) rolled oats (not quick cooking)
55g (1/2 cup) coconut flour (ground flax or wheat germ work too)
295g (1 cup) maple syrup
55g (1/4 cup) coconut oil, plus extra for greasing the pan
6g (1 teaspoon) kosher salt
160g (2 cups) unsweetened flaked coconut, toasted
115g (1 cup) chopped, walnuts, toasted (or other nut)
115g (1 cup) pumpkin seeds, toasted (or other seed, such as sunflower or sesame)
180g (1 ½ cups) chopped, pitted dates (or other dried fruit, such as blueberries or raisins)
Toss together the oatmeal and coconut flour in a large bowl and set aside. Preheat the oven to 325°F and grease a baking sheet with coconut oil.
Bring the maple syrup to a boil in a small saucepan, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 6 minutes. Add the coconut oil and salt; whisk until the coconut oil is thoroughly melted and all is combined. Pour the syrup over the oat mixture and toss with a spatula until thoroughly mixed. Spread out evenly in a clumpy layer on the greased baking sheet.
Bake the granola for 30 minutes, scraping with a spatula from the edges inward and redistributing evenly every 10 minutes. When the granola is light brown, it is done. Remove to a cooling rack for an hour, until room temperature, then stir in the coconut flakes, nuts, seeds and dates. Granola will keep in an airtight container for at least a week, if not longer (we’ve never been able to keep any longer than a few days because it’s all gone!)