Homemade Granola is wholesome, delicious, easy to make, and easy to customize, featuring oats, nuts, coconut, coconut oil, and honey!
Breakfast may be touted as the most important meal of the day, but hectic mornings don’t always lend enough time to make it fancy or exciting. In our house, I always try to keep a big tub of homemade granola stocked so that we have a wholesome (and popular) option on even the busiest of mornings. In fact, I usually make a double recipe so that it lasts more than a few days! I think my boys would eat granola every single day if I allowed them to.
Ways to Customize Homemade Granola
This recipe is adapted from a Barefoot Contessa classic. Her version calls for vegetable oil, but when I first started making it, I quickly determined that I much prefer the flavor of butter. Then a few years ago when I got on my still-going coconut oil kick, I decided to try that in lieu of butter. I must say, it leads to the best results yet. The coconut oil creates a glaze that’s crunchy and chewy at the same time.
As for nuts, go with your favorite! They are all delicious, but experiment until you find a combination that sings to you. For me, that’s almonds and cashews. And if you prefer, maple syrup may be used to sweeten your granola in lieu of honey.
Sometimes I add dried fruit when I make homemade granola, but more often than not, I leave it plain so that it’s easier to jazz up to everyone’s individual tastes come breakfast time on any given morning. Raisins, banana chips, dried cranberries, cherries, or apricots…the possibilities are endless. I am actually perfectly content eating the stuff plain (but I will plead the fifth if accused of tossing in a generous handful of chocolate chips and then eating it out of a coffee mug so my kids can’t see…ahem), but my boys love it stirred into some vanilla yogurt or milk with lots of fresh berries on top.
Uses for Homemade Granola
Granola doesn’t have to be limited to the breakfast table. It’s even yummy as an ice cream topping or baked into muffins. And I’ve bagged up this very granola and given it as gifts more times than I can count. It is always well received and people always request the recipe. It’s also fun to customize it for the holidays, for example, by using dried cranberries (red) and pistachios (green) at (you guessed it!) Christmastime. You might be seriously Type-A if you feel compelled to match your breakfast foods to seasonal color schemes, but I, of course, wouldn’t know anything about that.
Homemade Granola is easy to make, infinitely customizable, and the yummy results are well worth the minimal effort. I hope your family enjoys this recipe as much as mine does!
Homemade Granola Recipe
The BEST Homemade Granola
- 4 cups old-fashioned oats
- 2 cups shredded coconut
- 2 cups chopped nuts
- 2/3 cup coconut oil, melted and cooled
- 1/2 cup honey
- Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 350°F.
- In a large bowl, mix together oats, coconut, and nuts. Pour coconut oil over mixture and stir. Repeat with honey and stir all ingredients until evenly coated.
- Transfer granola onto a 13"x18"x1" sheet pan and spread into an even layer. Bake, stirring and flipping with a wooden spoon every 10 minutes, until the mixture turns a nice, even, golden brown, about 30 minutes total.
- Remove granola from the oven and stir frequently as it cools, scraping the bottom of the pan to prevent sticking. If desired, mix in 2 cups of dried fruit. Store in an airtight container.
- My favorite nut combination to use is 1 cup sliced almonds and 1 cup cashew pieces.
- Measure the honey into the same measuring cup you used for the coconut oil. The residue of the oil helps the honey slide out of the cup without sticking.
- If you prefer, melted butter may be substituted for the coconut oil.
- The granola will probably need to bake for a total of about 30 minutes, but ovens vary so watch the granola carefully, particularly the first time you make it. If you cut the recipe in half, it will require less time, and if you double it and cook two sheet pans at once (switching racks and rotating pans each time you stir), it will take longer.
- Since this granola tends to stick to the pan if not stirred very frequently during the cooling process, I've found that using a Silpat or some parchment paper on the bottom of your sheet pan alleviates this problem (you just have to stir carefully to make sure the granola doesn't wind up stuck under the parchment paper).
Adapted from Ina Garten