- Preheat oven to 275 F.
- In a large bowl combine oats, melted coconut oil, maple syrup, pumpkin seeds, walnuts, pecans, shredded coconut, and salt and toss until evenly coated.
- Cover two cookie sheets with parchment and spread evenly across both in a thin layer.
- Bake in oven for about 1 hour, tossing every 20 minutes, until golden brown and crisp.
- Let cool. Serve with cherries, almond milk and whatever seasonal fruit you have on hand such as persimmons, apples, and pears.
Health Benefits of Homemade Granola
One of the key benefits to making your own granola, rather than buying it at a store is the oil used. Coconut oil is one of the best fats to cook with, as it withstands high temperatures, and is also very healthful. All of the granolas you see in the store are made with either canola oil or other vegetables oils like sunflower or cottonseed. These are incredibly volatile oils that are not meant to be exposed to high heat. They oxidize and can create free radicals in the body. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve looked at the ingredients on an organic, super expensive granola brand at a health food store, only to find that they all still use rancid oils!
My second pet peeve about store-bought granola is that they are always loaded with sugar, and sometimes even with corn syrup. No thank you! This granola recipe contains just enough maple syrup to give it sweetness, but not feel like a dessert. Plus real maple syrup contains a number of beneficial antioxidants and electrolytes.
Another great benefit to homemade granola is the fats. Adding in nuts, seeds and coconut will help to keep your blood sugar balanced, especially if you plan on eating it first thing in the morning for breakfast. Have it with full-fat organic yogurt and you’ll really be fueled! A good majority of store-bought granolas only contain oats and sugar. Have that with a cup of coffee before work and you’re setting yourself up for a treacherous afternoon slump.
So make a few batches over the weekend to keep you and your family stocked up with a great go-to breakfast!