I've been a cereal person all my life, but once I cut out refined sugar, it was impossible to continue eating the sugary delicious cereals I had loved for so long. I figured granola would be a good alternative - but there's so much hidden sugar in storebought granola (not to mention how expensive it is). So sneaky and rude. I learned how to make it myself and I've never looked back. It's so easy AND you get to customize it to whatever you're in the mood for! Want some dried fruit in there? Sure, throw it in. A handful of chocolate chips? Live it up. Spices? Whatever floats your boat. Do what makes you happy. One thing I always make sure to add is coconut - I'm not a huge fan of it usually but in the granola, it adds this nice light flavor. I use whatever oil I have on hand, but it's usually coconut oil or grapeseed oil - both add a light, buttery flavor.
2.5 cups rolled oats (this is my favorite brand)
1 cup unsweetened coconut (shredded or flakes)
1 cup nuts of your choice, chopped
1/3 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup raw honey
1 tsp vanilla extract (optional)
Other add-ins: chia seeds, flax seeds, chocolate chips, dried fruit, etc
Preheat the oven to 325. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Mix the dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Add any spices you'd like to use to your taste - cinnamon, nutmeg, etc. In a separate small bowl, whisk the oil and honey together. Add the vanilla extract to the liquid ingredients if you're using it. Mix the liquid into the dry ingredients using a rubber spatula until it's well incorporated and no bits are left dry - you may need to add a little more oil or honey.
Spread the granola onto the baking sheet in an even layer.
The thing with granola is that you'll have to monitor it - after about 15 minutes of baking, you'll want to take it out and mix it around a bit because the edges will start to darken before the middle. Place it back in the oven for another 10-15 minutes or until it is nicely and evenly browned all over.
Let the granola cool completely, and then break it up into delicious chunks using a wooden spoon. Store in an air-tight container - it should keep for a couple weeks, if you don't eat it all before then. I love it in the morning mixed with fruit and greek yogurt, or as a handy snack on the go. Try it and let me know how it goes!