Granola

A good way to use and rotate some of your Long Term Food Storage is by making your own granola.  It traditionally has grains-usually oats, nuts, sweetener and oil.  Here is a good ratio:

3 cups oats
1 cup nuts
1/2 cup sweetener
1/4 cup oil
1 cup dried fruit if desired

With this ratio in mind you can make your own granola recipe adding spices and coconut to suit your family’s tastes.  For instance:

  • Oatmeal-use rolled or quick, either work, try adding rolled 6 grain cereal in place of some of the oats.  You may want to pulse it a little in a food processor to break it down a bit.
  • Nuts-Use any kind of nuts your family likes or isn’t allergic to.  If your kids won’t eat it because of the nuts, grind them in a food processor to make them unrecognizable while keeping the flavor and protein in there.  I like using raw nuts because they’ll toast while baking in the oven.
  • Sweetener-Use brown sugar, pure maple syrup, agave nectar, splenda, honey or a mixture of them.
  • Oil-Again, use whatever oil you want although I would stay away from an extra virgin olive oil or any other oil that has a strong flavor-or leave it out and use water as a binder
  • If adding dried fruits stir in after baking to keep it from getting too dry.

Here is the recipe I developed-it is a BIG batch but only lasts a couple weeks at my house:

My Favorite Granola

Preheat oven to 250 degrees F

9 cups oatmeal rolled or quick
1/2 cup powdered milk-to beef up the protein
1 cup multi-grain flour (9 grain cereal put through a wheat grinder) or whole wheat flour-I           use this to help create clusters.
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 1/2 cup nuts (I use 2 cups mixed nuts, ground then 1/2 cup slivered almonds or pecans)
2 cups coconut

nuts & coconut         ground nuts & coconut

I had mixed nuts to use up so I put 2 cups in my food processor with the coconut and ground them together then added 1/2 cup pecans in the big bowl.  I really like it this way because you can get the nutrients from the different nuts without having to look at all of them.  I know Brazil nuts have great nutrient value but they taste like dirt to me.

granola ingredients

Toss together well in a very large bowl.  In a separate bowl whisk together:

1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup water-to help bind up those yummy clusters
1/2 Tbs vanilla

oil & honey

My favorite tip is to measure the oil in the measuring cup first without scraping then pour the honey in after that and it slides right out,  no scraping needed 🙂

sweets & oil          mixed sweets & oil

Pour over stuff in big bowl stirring to coat completely.

mixing granola   all mixed granola

Divide into 2 cookie sheets, spread out and press down a little.  I use a silicone baking mat so if you don’t have that try either using parchment paper or spraying with Pam.

spreading granola

Bake for 2 hours, moving around every 30 minutes.  I don’t really stir it because I want clusters; I use a spatula to move the browned edges to the center and push the center towards the edge for more even browning.  Stir to loosen it up if you like it more crumbly.  When done leave the granola in the oven and pull the oven door ajar until cool to dry it out.  Break up into dainty bite sized clusters and store in airtight container.  It should last at least a month if pretty dry.  It can also be frozen for longer term storage.

granola in pan

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