Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Homemade Granola

 Boxed cereal gets really expensive for a family our size, especially considering the fact that most of them are just sugar and fillers. I've mentioned before how we aren't exactly morning people though, so having a box of cereal just needing milk is very convenient. I happen to love granola, however the prices have been creeping up out of range of our budget lately. Homemade granola has been the perfect option! I especially love the fact that I can add or replace many of the ingredients if I don't happen to have them on hand or if we just want a change. I've played around with several recipes and come up with one we really like, so I thought I'd share it.

10c. Uncooked oats (I often replace 2 or 3 cups with a 9 grain mix we get)
1c. wheat germ or sesame seeds (I usually don't have both at the same time for some reason)
2c. sunflower seeds
2c. cashew pieces (or any other chopped or slivered nuts)
3/4c. brown sugar (or maple or date sugar)
1t. salt
2t. cinnamon (or a little more, we like cinnamon)
Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and mix well.

1/2c. olive oil
2t. vanilla extract
1c. honey
Heat liquid ingredients just until the honey mixes nicely, then pour liquids over top of the dry ingredients and mix extremely well. The kids really enjoy helping with this part!

Spread thinly on baking sheets and bake at 300F for 30 minutes stirring every 10 minutes (or so, It's pretty forgiving if the oven is 300 or less).

Once it's cooked you can add a cup or two of dried fruit (raisins, cranberries, dates, currents, etc) if desired. We usually keep the granola plain and let family members add fruit at serving time since some of us don't really like raisins.


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