Granola is one of my favorite breakfast items and I love making my own–I’m definitely hooked on homemade granola! I often used dried fruit like cranberries, raisins, and blueberries, but this time I used some freeze-dried fruit. I recently received some complimentary samples from CRUNCHIES® and thought they would work great in granola.
CRUNCHIES® offers a variety of freeze-dried fruits (and even freeze-dried beets, which are pretty tasty), and their process retains most of the nutrients of fresh fruit. They are light with a great crunchiness to them–kind of like a chip, which makes them perfect for snacking on! I really liked all of the fruits they sent me–my favorites were the strawberries, grapes, and mangos. You can visit their site to see all the freeze-dried items they offer. In my granola, I used some of their freeze-dried strawberries, strawberry banana mix, raspberries, and grapes. So this granola is definitely fruity!
This is also a very versatile recipe–you can substitute other freeze-dried fruit or regular dried fruit like blueberries, cranberries, raisins, and banana chips, for example. The flavor of the freeze-dried fruit I used was really good, though, so you may just want to try that out!
MIXED FRUIT GRANOLA by NancyC
Makes 16-18 servings
- 6 cups old-fashioned oats
- 2 cups coarsely chopped pecans
- 1 cup wheat germ (or you can substitute flaxseed)
- 1 1/2 cups raw sunflower kernels (or use roasted kernels but add them to the mixture after baking)
- 2/3 cup non-GMO canola oil or light olive oil
- 1 1/4 cups honey
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 4 cups freeze-dried fruit (or regular dried fruit–I used a combination of CRUNCHIES® freeze dried strawberries, strawberry banana mix, raspberries, and grapes)
- parchment paper for lining pan
Adjust oven rack to middle of oven. Preheat oven to 325˚F. Line a 13 x 18″ rimmed baking pan with parchment paper; set aside (or use two rimmed 10 x 15″ cookie sheets).
In a very large bowl, stir together the oats, pecans, wheat germ, and sunflower kernels.
In a medium microwave-safe bowl, stir together the oil, honey, cinnamon and salt; heat in microwave for 30 to 40 seconds, then stir until well-blended.
Pour honey mixture over oat mixture in large bowl, stirring to coat evenly. Spread mixture in an even layer on the lined 13 x 18″ pan.
Bake at 325˚F for 20 minutes; remove from oven, stir mixture (so it will bake evenly), then return to oven for another 20 minutes–for a total baking time of 40 minutes. Remove from oven and stir in the dried fruit. Let granola stand until cooled, then stir again to break any large clumps. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.
This granola not only makes a great breakfast, but it’s a great snack for later in the day, too. The fruit in it gives it a nice natural sweetness and tartness. I love how colorful it is too–that freeze dried fruit really adds some color punch!
Tomorrow it will be October already! I mentioned last week I have a some apple recipes to share with you, and I’ll be posting one next week! Have you made any good apple recipes lately?