DIY granola: customize your crunch
This article was originally published in March 2016
There’s always plenty to choose from in the realm of packaged granola, but when you’ve got a bit of time to play in the kitchen, making it yourself is a fun baking project, and it lets you customize to your heart’s content.
Assemble your grains & nuts
Whole oats are the classic choice (and are gluten free), but spelt flakes work well on their own or as part of the mix. Wide strips of unsweetened coconut toasts nicely, and of course pecans, almonds, walnuts or a mix are delicious.
Choose your accessories
A pinch of cinnamon complements the flavors of toasted nuts and grains. Brown sugar, honey and maple syrup can be used on their own, but you’ll get the best flavor from combining two. A dab of melted butter or coconut oil helps the grains develop color.
Bake with patience
Toss everything together until the accessories are evenly coating the grains and nuts, then spread the mixture in a shallow layer on a baking sheet. Bake at 300° F, stirring every 15 minutes, until granola is fragrant and the oats are richly toasted.
Add the fruit
Raisins or currants add a basic sweetness to the mix, or get fancy with chopped dried apricots, chopped dates or dried apple pieces. If you want the granola to stay crisp a long time, bag up the fruit separately from the toasted grain mix; the moisture makes the grains a little soft.
Bulk foods are a baker’s delight
Our bulk department is the perfect playground when you want to experiment with new flavor and texture combinations in your DIY granola recipes. Along with the selection of flaked whole grains to use as your base ingredient, you’ll find raw and toasted nuts (including the popular sprouted almonds), fragrant seeds and naturally sweet dried fruits to accessorize with. We also have bulk honey, maple syrup and coconut oil in most stores.