Homemade Fruit Nut Granola

Homemade Fruit Nut Granola

4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats

1 cup pecan halves

½ cup sliced almonds

¾ tsp salt

¾ tsp cinnamon

½ cup olive oil

½ cup honey

1 tsp vanilla extract

⅓ cup dried cherries

⅓ cup chopped dates

Preheat the oven to 350℉.  Line a 15”x10” rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, mix oats, nuts and salt and cinnamon until well blended.

Add olive oil, honey and vanilla to oats.  Mix until well incorporated and all nuts and oats are coated.  Spread evenly on a lined baking sheet.

Bake in the oven for 10 minutes.  Remove from the oven and use a spatula to flip granola.  Press granola down with the back of the spatula to make it more cohesive.  Return to the oven and bake until golden brown (10-12 minutes).  Don’t worry if it doesn’t seem crunchy enough at this point.  It will continue to crisp up as it cools.

Remove from the oven and immediately sprinkle cherries and dates evenly over the top.  Use the back of the spatula to gently press fruit down.

Allow to rest undisturbed until completely cool then crumble or break into pieces.  

Store in a tightly sealed container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks or freeze for up to 3 months.

Serving size: ½ cup, 235 calories per serving

Hack:  Granola is incredibly versatile.  Feel free to use whatever nuts or seeds you have on hand.  The same goes for the dried fruit.  Alternative sweeteners such as maple syrup or applesauce can also be used.  Go crazy!

Hack:  Serve this in a bowl with milk for a fast and easy meal anytime of day!  It can also be stirred into plain yogurt (sweetened with a touch of honey and vanilla) or in overnight oats.

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