Granola is a favorite make-ahead breakfast recipe of mine, easily sprinkled over a dollop of yogurt, with a bit of milk and fresh berries, or had by itself as a snack. It only requires a minute or two to whip together; once the oats and nuts and seeds are all gathered, a syrup of olive oil along with natural sweeteners and nut butter is quickly whisked together to help along the flavor, tossed into the bowl to coat the oats with a rich and nutty sweetness. I just adore the unexpected, subtle depth that olive oil imparts and prefer to use it over other oils when making homemade granola.
I use a ratio here of 3:1 with oats to nuts and seeds, adding the same ratio of dried fruit as well if I have some on hand. Feel free to tweak the sweetness and the ingredient amounts to your liking, and you can leave out anything that doesn’t suit your taste. This granola could even be made grain-free - swap out the oats and replace with shaved coconut and some extra nuts and seeds to bulk it up. Or if you’re one to prefer an oat-only granola, leave out all the other additions besides the syrup ingredients. The recipe below makes a whopping batch as I like to have plenty extra on hand for sending home with friends and family members after a visit, but you may halve the recipe if there’s less of a crowd to feed.
Olive Oil Granola
makes approximately 10 cups granola*
6 cups rolled oats
2 cups assorted nuts and seeds - I like a mixture of almonds, peanuts, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds and occasionally sesame seeds.
2 cups dried fruit - I used chopped medjool dates, unsulfured dried Turkish apricots, and Thomson raisins.
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup nut butter - I like to use almond butter, peanut butter, or a mixture of both.
1 tablespoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon salt
*I like to make a massive batch to send off with family and friends after a visit, but you can easily halve the recipe.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
In a large mixing bowl, stir together the oats and the nut and seed mixture. In a separate bowl, whisk together the olive oil, maple syrup, honey, nut butter, vanilla and salt. Pour the wet ingredients over the oat mixture and stir until coated.
Spoon the granola onto two parchment lined baking sheets, patting down the granola with a spoon until it’s formed an even layer on both sheets.
Bake in the oven for 25 minutes, then take the granola out and stir it to ensure even toasting, and rotate the baking sheets when returning them to the oven. Bake for another 20 minutes then allow to cool completely on the pans, undisturbed, so that the granola can clump together a bit. While cooling, sprinkle the granola with the dried fruit.