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My daily breakfast is always plain or vanilla yogurt, with an almost equal amount of granola on top. Here, yogurt is really just accessory to the granola – at least, when it’s homemade granola. I’ve tried just about every store-bought granola variety out there – and have been disappointed or unable to eat it because almost all of them have nuts (I’m allergic to tree nuts).

Someone gave me this recipe years ago, and the rest is history! This is the basic recipe – but you could, of course, add whatever dried fruit, nuts, or seeds you wanted.

Homemade Granola

1/3 cup water

1/3 cup maple syrup (the real stuff)

1/3 cup honey

2 tbsp. vegetable oil

4 cups whole oats (not steel-cut – you want the flattened ones)

1/2 cup oat bran, optional (this helps you achieve chunkiness in the final product)

1 tsp salt

1 tbsp. cinnamon

1 cup nuts of your choice, optional

1 cup raisins or other dried fruit, optional

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

In a small saucepan, heat the water, maple syrup, honey, and oil until it comes to a boil.

simmering syrup
simmering syrup

While the syrup is heating up, mix the rest of the dry ingredients in a large bowl. If using nuts, add them here. Once the syrup is simmering, pour it over the oat mixture and stir immediately with a spatula. Make sure all of the oats are coated with syrup.

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Spread onto a large buttered (or cooking sprayed) baking sheet. Pop in the oven for 25-30 minutes, stirring with a spatula every 10 minutes. When stirring, make sure that the oat mix around the edges gets moved into the middle (otherwise, stuff on the edges will burn). When done, oats will be golden brown. If adding dried fruit, stir them in when the oats are out of the oven.

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Let cool completely, and then transfer to an airtight container for storage.

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