A few weeks ago I shared my Recipe Blueprint for Homemade Granola. Today I thought I’d also write a quick post that’s one of my favorite ways to make it, so here’s my recipe for Cherry Almond Granola.
Perfect for everyday, I especially love to make this granola over the holidays. Adding a couple handfuls of pistachios and even some chocolate chips can make this recipe even more decadent, but honestly, it’s delicious as is!
And if you’re looking for something to give friends or family, wrapped up some granola in bags or mason jars and you’ve got the perfect gift from your kitchen! Here’s a photo of some the granola gift bags I gave away this year.
So let’s get cooking and enjoy some homemade Cherry Almond Granola made with 100% real ingredients!
- 4 cups rolled oats
- 2 cups raw almonds
- 1 cup pumpkin or sunflower seeds
- ½ cup maple syrup
- 6-7 tablespoons oil* or melted unsalted butter**
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon ginger
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup chopped, dried, unsweetened cherries (I use bing cherries)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon organic almond extract
- 1 cup shredded coconut, unsweetened
- 1 tablespoon flax seed meal
- Preheat oven to 250 degrees F.
- In a large bowl combine oats, nuts, seeds, and coconut (optional), and flax seed meal (optional)
- In a separate bowl combine oil/butter, spices, salt, and maple syrup.
- Pour seasoned oil/butter mixture over the oat mixture and stir to coat.
- Spread granola on parchment lined baking sheets (size)
- Cook for about 1 hour and 15 minutes, stirring every 20 minutes.
- Remove from oven and let cool.
- Break into small pieces and stir in cherries.
- Store in airtight containers like zippered bags or mason jars. Will keep for about 2-3 weeks.
If you prefer, you can use honey instead of maple syrup.
Olive oil, coconut oil, or avocado oil work great. If using salted butter, reduce added salt to ¼ teaspoon.
Raw nuts and seeds work best. If you're adding previously roasted nuts or seeds, consider adding them after the granola is already cooked.
Pistachios make a great addition to this granola as well. Also, if you want to make it more decadent and holiday-inspired, add ½ cup of chocolate chips (when the granola has cooled) or drizzle some melted chocolate chips on top of the cooled granola.
Kitchen Tips and Resources:
- You definitely need a couple rimmed baking sheets to bake up my homemade granola since you don’t want it spilling over the sides. Try to avoid the flimsier varieties since they can bend, twist, and cook less evenly over time. You can buy baking sheets from just about any place that sells quality kitchen bakeware, but here’s a link for them on Amazon and at Williams-Sonoma.
- I line my baking sheets with parchment when cooking granola. Here’s the unbleached, Green Seal Certified parchment paper that I use.
- This OXO turner is one of my favorites for mixing up the granola while it’s cooking, but any heat-safe spatula/turner should work.
- Quart size mason jars are my favorite way to store granola and to share as gifts. Zippered bags work well too, though,
- Finally, when eating granola watch your serving size. In this highly processed world we live in, we’re used to consuming big portions. Granola in general is a very dense food, and homemade granola are no exception. Nuts, seeds, and dried, unsweetened fruit are all great foods, but they pack a surprising amount of calories. So I try to keep my granola serving size to about 1/2 cup. Serve it up in a small bowl with some fresh fruit or use it on top of some plain yogurt. And if you’re eating it as a snack, limit yourself to a handful or two.