In the past, I always ate store-bought granola. As with many foods I guess I never realized how easy it was to make my own at home. But now that I know I will never go back to packaged granola. For one there is sooooo much sugar in granola from the store and second it is way cheaper to make your own.
Over the years with making granola I have found that I prefer not to add sugar. Just like with my steel cut oats I feel it gets sweetened enough with the maple syrup. And I really enjoy the toasty flavor of the oats after it cooks. But the good thing with making your own is you can add as much or little sugar as you want to your recipe.
Also, the flavor combinations are endless. I have made coconut almond granola and honey nut granola using the same base recipe but just switching up the sweetener and add ins (nuts, dried fruit, seeds, etc). You can completely customize the recipe with whatever you have on hand and to suit your taste.
That is exactly how this maple walnut granola came about. I had a bunch of walnuts in my fridge and just bought a big bottle of pure maple syrup. So maple walnut granola it is!
This granola is delicious. Not overly sweet and has a great flavor from the walnuts and toasty oats. Besides eating by the handful another way I decided to use it was to make yogurt parfaits using ¼ cup granola, 1 8 ounce strawberry greek yogurt and fresh strawberries.. When summer time rolls around one of the first things I start to crave are yogurt and granola parfaits. You can use any type of fruit, yogurt, and granola combination but strawberries and strawberry yogurt are my favorite. Here in Buffalo acquiring tasty fresh seasonal fruit is nothing short of a luxury. So when we have access to it I am ready to chow down.
- 3 cups rolled oats
- 1 ½ cups chopped walnuts
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 3 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 cup pure maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ¼ cup melted coconut oil
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
- In a medium bowl combine rolled oats, walnuts, salt, and cinnamon. Combine well.
- In a separate bowl combine maple syrup, vanilla extract, and coconut oil. Pour into the dry ingredients and stir well until all the oat mixture is coated.
- Spread granola mixture onto a large baking sheet.
- Baked for 35 - 40 minutes or until oats are toasty. You want to stir the granola every 15 minutes or so it cooks evenly and the ends don't burn.
This granola and be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator and/or freezer.