There’s nothing better than a good granola. I love having some around on a regular basis as topping for yogurt or to enjoy as a quick snack. Truthfully, half the time I make granola I don’t even bother to photograph and share it here because I think it’s not good enough. Not crunchy enough. Missing those chunks. Too plain. Blah, blah, blah.
In fact, I’ve made several batches of this basic granola without sharing it. But recently as I was eating it I just decided enough was enough. This granola may not be fancy–it doesn’t even have any dried fruit in it, and the walnuts were a last minute [fabulous!!] addition–but it is what we like, and so gosh darn it I’m gonna share it!! 🙂 So I ran outside after I got home, photographed the granola, and am sharing the recipe the very next day. Who am I??!
Well, truthfully, I don’t know, but what I do know is this: I love this granola! It is perfect and pretty much incapable of being screwed up. It’s fairly lowfat and is just sweet enough for my tastes, which means it’s healthy, right? 🙂 The use of the applesauce not only keeps the fat down while still allowing for a crunchy texture, but it also adds a subtle apple flavor. Paired with its classic cinnamon counterpart, this is one flavorful granola! Add in a couple kinds of nuts and some chewy coconut and you won’t even miss the extra sugar or dried fruit [though you can certainly add either if that’s your thing]. I’ve pretty much decided that this is now my go-to granola. It’s crunchy, flavorful, and interesting–and as long as you refrain from stirring too much, those much loved chunks of granola remain after baking. Winner in my book. I know it will be in yours too!
- 3/4 cup natural, no sugar added applesauce
- 6 tablespoons brown sugar, packed
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 4 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats
- 3/4 cup walnuts, chopped
- 1/2 cup wheat germ
- 1/2 cup sweetened coconut flakes
- 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment or a silpat.
In a small saucepan set over low, combine applesauce, brown sugar, honey, and oil. Stir together until sugar melts and mixture is warm. Remove from heat.
In a large bowl, toss together oats, walnuts, wheat germ, coconut, sunflower seeds, and cinnamon. Gradually pour applesauce mixture over oats, stirring to fully coat. Transfer mixture onto prepared baking sheet, then press down firmly with the back of a spatula.
Bake for 45 minutes, stirring once or twice. [If granola starts to burn or get too dark, especially after 30 minutes, cover loosely with foil].
Time: 60 minutes.
Yield: 6 cups.