We are granola lovers around here. The best thing about granola, besides the fact that it is good for you, is its complete versalitlity. Throw it in yogurt, douse it in milk, sprinkle it over fruit, or eat it by the handfuls. It is perfect for a quick breakfast, or snacking. Granola is a blank slate – customize it to make the perfect blend for your tastebuds.
And this granola? It couldn’t be easier.Throw it in the slow cooker, give it a few stirs, and BOOM! No watching the oven. No burning yourself on hot pans (not that I’ve ever done that before…). It is adapted from a recipe in this handy dandy slow cooker cookbook, Make It Fast, Cook It Slow. This is not your run of the mill slow cooker cookbook – no cream of something soups or pale vegetables swimming in gravy – they are great recipes. Check out her blog as well. It is the motherload of great slow cooker recipes. Here’s what ya need:
Old-fashioned (rolled) oats
Mixed unsalted nuts
Raw sunflower seeds
Unsweetened coconut flakes
Dried fruit (whatever combination you love!)
Honey or maple syrup
Coconut oil or butter
Cinnamon (or other spices)
Prepare yourself. This is going to be fast. Pour the oats, wheat germ, sunflower seeds, coconut flakes, and dried fruit into the slow cooker. Yes, that is my ugly green early-2000’s crockpot. It ranks right up there with the trendy olive green or vintage burnt orange. But I digress.
Add the honey, coconut oil, cinnamon, vanilla, and molasses. Now, since this is going to heat up, and the melting temperature of coconut oil is low, I did not melt it beforehand. If you use butter, you will want to melt it before adding it.Stir it up well.
Cook on high for 2-3 hours, stirring every so often, about every 45 minutes or so. If you prefer chewier granola, take it out after 2 hours. Like yours crunchy? Leave it in longer, up to 3 hours or even longer. Just remember that the longer it cooks, the more often you need to stir it. Pour it out onto a large baking sheet to cool.
Here are some fun variations to try!
Choco-Cherry (perfect for Valentine’s Day!): Add 1-2 t. cocoa power, omit cinnamon. Use 1/2 c. dried cherries for the dried fruit, add 1/2 c. chocolate chips (semi-sweet, milk, white, or a combination) once the granola has cooled.
Nut Lovers: Add 1/4 c. flaxseed, 1/4 c. raw pumpkin seeds, reduce dried fruit to 1/4 c. or omit, and increase nut mix to 3/4 c.
Tropical Getaway: Use dried mangoes, papaya, and pineapple for the dried fruit, (add 1/4 c. banana chips after baking and stir together well), omit cinnamon, and use 1/4 t. almond instead of vanilla.
- 5 c. old fashioned (rolled) oats
- ¾ c. honey or real maple syrup
- ¾ c. coconut oil or butter (melted)
- ¾ c. dried fruit
- ½ c. mixed unsalted nuts
- ½ c. unsweetened coconut
- ¼ c. wheat germ (opt)
- ¼ c. raw sunflower seeds
- 2 T. molasses
- 2 t. cinnamon
- 1 t. vanilla
- Combine oats, dried fruit, nuts, coconut, wheat germ, and sunflower seeds in slow cooker. Stir to combine.
- Add honey, coconut oil, molasses, cinnamon, and vanilla. Stir well.
- Cover; vent lid with spoon.
- Cook on high 2-3 hours or until brown. Stir occasionally.