My family loves granola. But granola is *expensive*. And it usually has some pretty weird ingredients. So I decided to learn to make my own. I found several recipes (this being the best one in my opinion), but as is par for the course here, I tend to combine them and make my own recipe out of it.
This recipe is, bar none, the best granola we've ever had. It makes a HUGE amount. But can be easily divided.
To make it more frugal, use what you have on hand or what is inexpensive or in season.
Printable recipe follows picture tutorial.
When the oil is hot (medium high) add 8 cups of oats and a bag of coconut. Here I added a little bag because my sweet husband picked it up for me on the way home and paid a FORTUNE for it. If I'd had a cheaper bag, I would have added more.
Heat a little more oil and add 1 cup of sliced almonds. Stir until they are toasted. You can also do this in the oven or even skip this step. But toasted almonds have a lot more flavor than untoasted almonds. When toasted put them aside.
I like to add another kind of nut just to keep it interesting. Here is about 1/2 cup chopped pecans. All the recipes say to wait until it's totally cool and bagged to add the nuts and fruit, I have no idea why. I add them right after I pack it down on the parchment paper.
Add some dried fruit. Here is close to a cup of dried cranberries. And I don't show it (forgot to get the picture) but I also added half a cup or so of dried dates just cause I had them left from Christmas baking.
Once it's set for a while, start to break it up. If you wait until it's completely cool it may be harder to crumble. See the corner that's missing? That's where the family can't keep their little grubby fingers out of it. Yeah, it's that good.
Be sure not to put it in the bag until it's totally cool or condensation will occur and it will ruin the granola. This keeps for a long time on the shelf. I've not found out how long because the family gobbles it down within a few days at most.
Homemade Frugal Delicious Stovetop Granola
4 T Olive Oil
8 Cups Oats
A bag of coconut
1 1/3 Cup butter
8 T Honey
1 1/3 Cup packed brown sugar
Up to 2 cups Nuts (if desired) (toasted if desired)
Up to 1 1/3 cup dried fruit of your choice
Heat the oil in the biggest pot you've got over medium high. Add oats and coconut. Stirring constantly until browned. This will take several minutes. Set aside in a bowl.
Heat a bit more oil and toast any nuts you want to toast. Set them aside separately.
Melt butter. Add honey and then brown sugar. Stir constantly until you've got a good bubble.
Add toasted oats and coconut back to butter/sugar mixture and toast several minutes until the mixture gets all toasty and caramely.
Pour mixture on parchment or waxed paper. Pack down. Add nuts, pack down. Add dried fruits, pack down. Once it begins to harden, break up into big chunks.
When totally cool put into a huge zipper bag (or two).
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