Vanilla Almond Granola

Vanilla Almond Granola 1I love granola.  I love snacking on it alone, I love eating it as cereal for breakfast, but probably my favorite way to eat it is on top of my yogurt.  Mmmmm…  Even though I love granola, and I’ll eat a variety, I prefer the kind that has the large clusters.  Mike has always loved having Honey Bunches of Oats for breakfast in the mornings, but I dreamed of eating Just Bunches long before they actually came out with it.

After making my first batch of granola this morning I was very pleased with the flavor, but disappointed in the texture.  Crunchy?  Yes.  Flavorful?  Yes.  (The addition of Almond extract in this was brilliant on Sally’s part.)  But where were the clusters?  I could run this granola through my hands without any chunks, it was just all individual oats and slivered almonds all alone.  If that’s the kind of granola you like, then follow Sally’s directions.  But if you want clusters, read on.  It turns out there are a few tricks to making granola extra clustery.  (I was not confident that was a word, but since it’s not automatically underlined we’re goin’ with it.)  Thanks to food52.com I learned that I needed to add an egg white to the mixture to help bind everything together.  I also needed to cook it low and slow without stirring.  This goes against my basic instinct because I tend to burn things when I’m not paying attention and I always set my alarm on my phone so that I make sure to not forget what’s happening in the kitchen.  So it was a struggle to not stir the granola, but trust me, the results are worth it.  And the baking time is low enough that it won’t burn.  This is a guilt free snack that I hope you enjoy as much as I do!

Vanilla Almond Granola 2

Vanilla Almond Granola Title

IngredientsVanilla Almond Granola 3

  • 2 and 1/2 cups (200g) old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 3/4 cup (100g) slivered almonds
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) melted coconut oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 egg white, beaten

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 275F degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Combine the oats, almonds, cinnamon, and salt in a large bowl and stir with a fork to combine. Set aside. In a medium microwave safe bowl, melt the coconut oil in the microwave for about 40 seconds.  Add the maple syrup to the coconut oil and whisk until combined. Whisk in the almond and vanilla extracts. Pour over the oats and toss to coat. Make sure all of the oats are moistened.
  3. Using a whisk, beat the egg white until light and frothy (2-3 minutes) and add to the oatmeal mixture.
  4. Spread onto the prepared baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes.  DO NOT STIR!  After the first 15 minutes rotate the pan in the oven.
  5. After 30 minutes turn the temperature up to 325F degrees and bake for an additional 10-12 minutes until the granola is a light golden brown.
  6. Remove the granola and allow to cool completely on the baking sheet at least 30 minutes.  Then you can break the granola into bite-sized clusters and crunch away!

Notes – This is delicious eaten as cereal in milk, or on top of your favorite yogurt.  Granola remains fresh in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 weeks.

Adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction

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