I know. I know. Scruptious? Granola?
But give me a minute, here, before you click away in disgust.
I’ve never been a granola fan. I’ve always felt there’s nothing quite as dreary as chewing your way through a dentally-challenging bowl of nuts and twigs first thing in morning. I have a weakness for children’s breakfast cereals. Comforting baked goods.
This granola though…dang! It puts store-bought granola to shame. It tastes good. Really good. And it’s not going to chip a molar. In fact…think of it as a deconstructed oatmeal cookie. Use it as a crumble on ice cream. Whatever! But give it a try!
Zest of one orange
2 Tablespoons sugar
4 cups old fashioned rolled oats
1 ½ cups walnuts, broken up slightly
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon cinnamon
½ cup melted coconut oil
½ cup honey
1 cup dried fruit of your choice: cherries, blueberries, raisins, cranberries, dates…
How to Make It:
Preheat your oven to 350F. Line a jelly-roll pan or other big, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
Combine the orange zest and sugar in a little bowl. Rub the zest into the sugar until it is bright orange and smells amazing.
Break up your walnuts a little bit so you don’t have entire walnut halves going in to the mix, here. I put them in a bag and pushed a rolling pin over them a few times. You don’t want them pulverized or chopped finely, just broken into smaller bite-size pieces.
In a large bowl, combine the oats, walnuts, salt, cinnamon, and your orange sugar. Stir to combine. Make sure you break up any sugar clumps, so the orange flavor goes all through the mix.
Pour in the coconut oil and honey. Mix well, coating all the oats.
With a spatula, spread the granola onto your baking sheet in an even layer. Bake at 350F for 25 minutes, stirring occasionally as it bakes, until it turns a light golden brown. Remove from the oven and let it cool on a rack. The granola will crisp up nicely as it cools down.
When the granola is cool, add in your dried fruit. I love cherries in this mix. Today I used blueberries and cranberries, because that’s what I had on hand. This granola will keep in an airtight container for a week or two. But don’t be surprised if you eat it all up long before then!