#12- Crunchy Maple Granola

20141214_160229For those looking to make a great and healthy (and edible) (and last-minute) Christmas gift, here is a granola recipe I’ve always used. Granola is really good with some fruit and milk/yogurt – or just alone as a snack!

To gift it, you can put the granola in a mason jar, and put a decorative ribbon/twine around it. Or use a cookie/goodie bag, with a window to reveal the granola!

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Bag from Michael's

Bag from Michael’s

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Ingredients:

  • 6 cups rolled oats
  • 2 cups chopped nuts (almonds/pecans/cashews)
  • 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 cup pepitas
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp nutmeg (optional)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup (or honey)
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp orange zest (optional)
  • 1 1/2 cups dried fruit (raisins, cranberries, blueberries, cherries)

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 325F
  2. Line 2 large rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper
  3. Combine oats, nuts, pepitas, coconut in a large bowl.
  4. Combine oil, maple syrup, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and vanilla in a saucepan
  5. Heat the syrup mixture until just boiled. Take off heat
  6. Pour the oil mixture all over the oat mixture. Mix until well coated.
  7. Spread granola in the baking sheets.
  8. Bake for 30-35 minutes, checking and stirring often to prevent burning (every 10-15 mins).
  9. In the meantime, scrub oranges and grate the orange for zest (use a microplaner, and don’t grate any of the white pith)
  10. Cool
  11. Stir in zest and dried fruits. Store granola in a cool place.
  12. When kept in an airtight container (at room temperature), this can last for 2 weeks.
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