Homemade granola not only makes a great breakfast, but also a good-for-you snack. It takes just minutes to mix and bake, tastes way better than store bought, and you get to control all the ingredients!
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This is a Pantry Basics recipe - basic recipes we used to buy all the time, but are easier, cheaper, and healthier to make at home! See all the recipes here.
We eat homemade granola for breakfast almost every day at our house. My daughter also loves it for a snack, too - and I love knowing exactly what the ingredients are in that snack.
Store bought granola gets a bad rap because of the sugar, but you can make it with less using this recipe, plus it's a lot less expensive as well.
2 Hour Granola?
Years ago when I first attempted making homemade granola, the only recipes I could find for called for baking it at a low temperature for 2 hours! AND stirring it 2-3 times, so you had to babysit it.
Ugh - I made it only once because I didn't want my oven on for that long, and it just took too much time.
Then I found a recipe in one of the Tightwad Gazette books that only needed 20 minutes of baking, yay!
Seems granola doesn't need to be cooked that long after all.
Over the years I adapted it to our tastes and to make it healthier and it became one of our favorites.
Update: This is the recipe that started me out making our own granola, but I now make this even easier maple-honey homemade granola recipe, since it uses even less sweetener and cooks in even less time.
Make Homemade Granola
- honey or maple syrup
- brown sugar
- oats or other rolled grain
- sunflower seeds/nuts
- flax seeds, bran, etc.
- optional flour
- optional dried fruit
This is a really flexible recipe. Don't have nuts? Leave them out.
Want to use up a half-eaten bag of dried apricots? Cut them up and throw them in. Or any other dried fruit - you get the idea.
Sometimes I use all rolled oats and sometimes I use a 5-grain rolled mix. Just keep the total amount of dry ingredients to 10 cups (of which 8 cups should be rolled grains).
What's with the flour?
I noticed when looking at boxed granola ingredients that there was always flour listed and since I wanted to create more "chunks" like the commercial cereals, I added a 1/4 cup and it did create more chunks.
Any type of flour works, since it's being used to add to the "clumpiness" factor, but of course it's also totally optional.
Shop this recipe:
- The 5-Grain Rolled Cereal Mix I like to use.
- The brand of rolled oats I prefer.
- I like to use this oil for its neutral flavor.
- To make it extra healthy, I add Flax Seed (for fiber) and Ground Flax (for heart health), and Oat Bran.
Add the oil, honey, and sugar to a medium sauce pot and heat over medium heat.
You can let the mixture cook while mixing your dry ingredients, stirring every now and then.
When the sugar melts remove it from the heat before adding vanilla because it will boil up a little - just stir it down.
Tip: when adding the sweeteners and oil to the saucepan, add the brown sugar first, the oil second, and then add the honey. Measuring in this order will help the honey to simply slide out of the measuring cup!
Pour the hot mixture over the dry ingredients and start mixing it together with a large spoon, but don't get discouraged!
It will seem like it can't possibly cover all the dry ingredients, but just keep mixing, using the spoon to get all the edges and smooshing with the back of the spoon, and it will eventually be evenly coated. And it really only takes a few minutes, I swear!
Now, I've read that some people recommend using your hands to mix the granola and I actually tried this, which makes me want to mention two things:
- The sugar mixture is HOT.
- It's really very sticky. Very sticky.
So I use my large stainless steel spoon.
Bake for only 20 minutes - much better than 2 hours, don't you think?
TIP: I've found that if you cool it for about 20 minutes without stirring there will be more of the chunks that my family likes. If you don't want larger pieces, stir it more often while it's cooling.
In either case, you will have to stir from the outside after 20 minutes or it will stick to the pan.
If it ever does stick badly (like if you've forgotten about it because you're outside in the garden...not that I've ever done that), put it back in a warm oven for a few minutes, and it should come up without a problem.
Stir in any dried fruit you'd like either right when you take it out of the oven or after letting it sit for awhile.
Store the granola in a large jar easily accessible by anyone, because everyone will love this.
Easy Homemade Granola FAQs
There's no other purpose than to add more of their healthy qualities (omega-3s, fiber, nutrients, etc.). Leave them out and fill in with more oats or add other things.
Yes, you can add them before baking or to the top of your granola in the bowl when eating.
It's a little of both. If you want more crunch, lay the unbaked mixture out flat in a large cookie sheet and cook 5-10 minutes longer.
There's 1-1/4 cup sugar total (honey and br. sugar combined) to 10 cups of dry ingredients. That's about 2 tablespoons of sugar in every 1 cup of granola (not counting any added fruit). A serving is 1/4 to 1/3 cup, so about 1-1/2 teaspoons of sugar in a serving.
30 Minute Homemade Granola Recipe (Pantry Basic)
- 1/2 cup oil (cold-pressed sunflower, neutral olive oil, or melted coconut oil)
- 3/4 cup honey or maple syrup*
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon vanilla
- 8 cups rolled oats (or other rolled grains)
- 1 cup sunflower seeds and/or other nuts
- 1 cup total of any of the following: ground flax seed, whole flax seed, or oat bran, etc.**
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1/4 cup flour (optional to increase clumps)
- 1 cup dried fruit of choice (optional - add after baking)
- Heat oven to 350 degrees.
- Mix oil, sugar, and honey/maple syrup in a saucepan over medium heat until sugar is dissolved.
- Meanwhile, mix all the dry ingredients (except the fruit, if using) in a lightly oiled large roasting pan (use a large rimmed cookie sheet if you'd like it crunchier).
- Remove the sugar-oil mixture from heat and add the vanilla. It may bubble a bit, just stir it down. Pour the sugar mixture over the dry ingredients, stirring everything well until all the dry ingredients are evenly coated.
- Bake for 20 minutes, until lightly brown. (Or bake 10 minutes longer for a crunchier granola.) Note: if you want granola without clumps, stir at the halfway point.
- Remove from oven and add dried fruit, if using. Let cool about 20 minutes before stirring once or twice and then letting cool completely.
- Store in an airtight container.
Other Easy Breakfast Recipes To Try
This recipe has been updated - it was originally published in April of 2009.
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