Homemade Coconut Granola

Homemade Coconut Granola (Gluten Free)

Prepackaged granola (and granola bars) are often loaded with sugar, preservatives, and other unsavory ingredients that won’t exactly help you recharge after a decadent holiday season. The solution? Make your own! This easy recipe contains whole grains, a tiny bit of oil, a touch of maple syrup, nuts, and dried fruit for flavor.

Yields: 4 1/2 cups

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup raw cashews, chopped
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded or flaked coconut
  • 1/3 cup sliced almonds
  • 1/2 tbsp flax seeds (optional)
  • 3 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil or butter
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 cups chopped dried fruit: apricots, dried mangoes, dried cranberries, dried blueberries ( mixture of some or all)
  • To serve: fresh blueberries, banana, raspberries, mangos or another fruit of choice and 0% Greek yogurt

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 F.
  2. Combine the first five ingredients in a large bowl. Heat the coconut oil and maple syrup in a microwave or on the stovetop until the oil has just melted.
  3. Whisk in the spices and sea salt. Toss with the oats and nuts until the mixture is evenly coated.
  4. Whisk an egg white in a small bowl until frothy. Stir into the granola mixture. Spread the granola on a large baking sheet in an even layer.
  5. Bake for about 20 to 25 minutes. Halfway through the baking time, carefully turn sections of the granola over with a spatula, but do not break it up too much.
  6. When the granola is golden brown, remove from the oven and carefully stir in the sliced dried fruit. Allow the granola to cool completely. It will harden as it cools.
  7. Serve with Greek yogurt and fresh fruit. Store in the cupboard in an airtight container or in the freezer in an airtight freezer bag.

Note: For larger clumps, do not stir the granola mix too much after adding the egg white and during/after baking. Conversely, for a flakier granola, stir well to break up the clusters.