Start the day off right with homemade healthy granola recipe, not too sweet, made with lots of grainy goodness.
I go back and forth between buying breakfast cereal for its convenience and completely abandoning it for its questionable nutrition. Yes, really. I said that. I’m sorry, mamas, but it’s true. That thing that makes our life so easy is really not all that good for us. Call me the bad cop.
Most commercially-made breakfast cereals are full of sugar, salt, and heavily processed grains. My kids love them. Often that’s what they will choose for their birthday breakfast. And yes, on your birthday, I will buy chocolate-covered sugar bombs for breakfast.
I just won’t let you make a steady diet of it.
For regular days, I often buy Joe’s O’s from Trader Joe’s. At $2 a box it’s an okay “fill-the-gap” convenience item, but the ingredients list still has a lot of things I can’t pronounce. I’ll still buy it. Life is too short to freak out too much. But, when I can, I want my kids to have real food.
(Oh that this resolve will last all year long!)
- Maple-Brown Sugar Cinnamon Rolls
- Mix and Match Muffins
- Eggs and Toast
- Granola (either with milk or yogurt and fruit)
These days, I’m making this granola. It’s not too sweet, it’s easy to mix up, and it disappears in the blink of an eye. My kids love it. And for the last two weeks, no one has noticed that there are no boxed cereals in the pantry. Win.
This batch fills three quart jars if I move fast enough. My people eat it up pretty quickly.
Healthy granola recipe ingredients:
- Oats – This homemade granola recipe use heart-healthy old-fashioned oats. If you want to make this gluten free, then be sure to purchase gluten free rolled oats.
- More Whole Grains– I didn’t stop with the oats on sneaking in whole grains into this granola recipe. This granola recipe also includes, wheat germ, wheat bran, and I stirred in some flax seed meal for some extra protein and nutrients.
- Coconut chips – This will add some extra sweetness, and texture.
- Demerara Sugar – This is a lesser processed sugar than typical granulated sugar. But you could also use honey or maple syrup. Just omit the sugar and water. Add 1 1/4 cups of honey (or maple syrup).
- Sunflower Oil – We used sunflower but you could also substitute for another oil such as coconut oil.
- Flavoring– I added a little salt and vanilla extract.
How to make this healthy granola recipe:
Preheat and prepare the pan. Preheat the oven to 350°. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. I like to use parchment paper or a silicone baking mat so this cleans up quickly.
Make the oat mixture. In a large mixing bowl, combine the oats, coconut, wheat germ, wheat bran, flax seed meal, and salt.
Optional Granola Mix-ins
- Nuts and seeds – This granola would be grat with stirred in nuts and seeds. You can try adding walnuts, almonds, or pecans. Or try adding pepitas for a little extra crunch.
- Dried Fruit – For a little extra sweetness you can add in dried fruit. But make sure to add the dried fruit after baking. If you stir in dried fruit before it will burn. Try adding raisins, cranberries or chopped, dried cherries.
- Spice – You could always add a little cinnamon to the mixture before baking.
- Chocolate – Chocolate chips would be wonderful to add. But, like the dried fruit, stir in chocolate chips after the granola has baked and cooled.
How do I store homemade granola?
Can I use a honey or maple syrup to sweeten this healthy granola recipe?
You absolutely can.
Demerara sugar is a lesser-processed sugar. You can use 1 1/4 cup honey or maple syrup if you’d rather and omit the sugar and water.
What can I serve this granola with?
Of course you can eat this right out of the container as a kid-friendly snack. Serve or milk for a healthy quick breakfast. Or try stirring this together with fresh fruit and plain yogurt, for a Yogurt Berry Parfait.
Other granola recipe variations to try:
- Maple Vanilla Almond Granola
- Maple Cinnamon Granola
- Cranberry Orange Granola
- Maple Granola with Oats, Nuts, and Seeds
How to make this healthy homemade granola recipe a good cheap eat:
Here are some of the strategies you can use to make this recipe more economical:
- Stock up on ingredients when they are on sale. When I find regular kitchen staples on sale, I buy a lot. I’m currently using a price book to track prices and that’s saving me money. For this recipe, keeping an eye on the price of sugar and oats can help keep the price down.
- Buying in bulk – It’s rare that I would buy just one bag of oatss. Instead I stock up when I see a sale. I practice the same bulk buying for spices and other baking ingredients.
Tools that make homemade granola making easier:
I’ve had my share of burnt batches of granola. No fun. Over time, I’ve found some tools that make the process easier, cleaner, and tastier.
- Sheet pans – I struggled forever with unevenly cooked granola in 9×13 pans. These sheet pans work so much better for me.
- Silicone baking mats or parchment paper – these liners make it so effortless to remove granola from the pan and to prevent sticking and burning.
- Quart-size canning jars – I love my jars. I use them to store baking mixes, sugar, bulk yeast, and granola.
- A canning funnel – I like to fill my jars without a lot of mess or waste. A funnel makes it easy.
Healthy Homemade Granola
- 5 cup rolled oats
- 2 cup coconut chips
- 1 cup wheat germ
- 1 cup wheat bran
- 1 cup flax seed meal
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup demerara sugar
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup neutral oil
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 350°. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the oats, coconut, wheat germ, wheat bran, flax seed meal, and salt.
- In a small saucepan, combine the sugar and water, stirring until dissolved. Add the oil and vanilla.
- Pour the wet mixture over the dry, stirring to combine. Spread the mixture into the prepared pan and press firmly.
- Bake the granola for 30 minutes, watching for overbrowning on the edges. If it starts to get too brown on the edges, move the edges to the center with a spatula.
- Allow to cool completely and then break into chunks.
- Store in an airtight container. For longer shelf life, store the granola in the freezer.