I publicly admit I have a weakness for granola that dates back many years. I first started making my own granola while living in Russia in my early 20s and I haven’t stopped. I’m also still using the same recipe from all those years ago and haven’t found one yet that I like better, but that never stops me from trying. When Angela’s recent post for Cinnamon Bun Granola showed up on my electronic doorstep I didn’t wait 24 hours to throw it all together.
The prep is fast, although you will need a food processor or very powerful blender for the date-riddled syrup you’re going to pour all over your dry ingredients to stick them together like your grade school worksheet.
My pictures are not nearly as pretty as Angela’s, and I blame my laziness for that. Sometimes you don’t feel like walking upstairs to get the camera so you just use your iPhone because it’s within an arm’s reach. There, I’ve said it. Hopefully the granola’s goodness will compensate for my less than impressive pictures of it.
This stuff is very sweet. And by very sweet I mean you could put this on a stick and hand it out for Halloween and no child would think they got gypped coming to your house kind of sweet. Yeah, it’s sweet. For my taste preferences, it’s too much sweet if you’re into eating a bowl of granola with almond milk on a Saturday morning. So my workaround is to use it as a topping for other less sweet cereals to add a bit of pep to the bowl, or if you eat ice cream it could work nicely there, too. Easy. But you may be on the opposite end of the spectrum and think this stuff is mild compared to your definition of sweet. Regardless of where you fall – make this granola. It will be worth your minimal effort. And if nothing else, you have options for trick-or-treaters come Halloween.
Oh, and lest I forget to mention, this recipe originally hails from the book Tiny Treats – an e-cookbook devoted to 25 recipes free of wheat, soy, eggs, dairy, and refined flour/sugar. Lisa from Vegan Culinary Crusade and Nicole from A Dash of Compassion are the two incredibly compassionate women raising money through the sales of Tiny Treats to benefit the Elephant Nature Park in Northern Thailand. After reading about their experiences, I may need to plan a trip there, myself. Christie, are you with me?
- Rolled Oats - 2 cups
- Raw Buckwheat Groats - 1/2 cup
- Raw Walnuts - 1/2 cup, chopped
- Unsweetened Shredded Coconut - 1/2 cup
- Raisins - 1/4 cup
- Ground Cinnamon - 1 T
- Sea Salt - 1/2 tsp
- Ground Nutmeg - 1/4 tsp
- Pure Maple Syrup - 1/2 cup
- Medjool Dates - 1/4 cup, pitted
- Coconut Oil - 2 T, melted
- Water - 2 T
- Pure Vanilla Extract - 2 tsp
- In a large bowl, stir together the oats, buckwheat, walnuts, shredded coconut, raisins, cinnamon, salt and nutmeg.
- Using a food processor or a blender, blend the maple syrup, dates, coconut oil, water and vanilla extract into a smooth, thick sauce.
- Pour the sauce into the bowl with the dry ingredients and stir until all the dry ingredients are well coated.
Transfer the granola to a Teﬂex-lined dehydrator tray and spread into a thin (about 1/2 inch thick), even layer. Dehydrate for 8 to 10 hours at 115F.
Preheat the oven to 300F. Transfer the mixture to a baking tray lined with parchment paper and spread into a thin, even layer. Bake for 25 minutes, gently stirring every 10 minutes to ensure even browning. Allow to cool completely before gently breaking into clusters. Store in an air-tight container in the fridge or at room temperature.