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Whitish table with white bowl with granola and fruit, a wooden spoon beside it.

Easy Homemade Granola (best recipe)

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5 from 1 review

If you've never made granola at home, you'll be surprised how easy it is and how long it lasts (hint: it can be frozen)! Crunchy, sweet but not too much, and full of your favorite nuts and dried fruit, you'll never return to the purchased stuff. 

  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Yield: 4 cups


  • 3 cups oats (traditional or rolled)
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds
  • 1/2 cup hazelnuts, coarsely chopped (I buy them without the skin)
  • 2 tablespoons of cocoa nibs (optional)
  • 1/4 cup shredded coconut (optional)
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • Large pinch of sea salt
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries and/or raisins


  1. Preheat oven to 300ºF / 120ºC.
  2. Mix oats, almonds, hazelnuts, coconut and nibs if using, salt, zest and cinnamon in a large bowl.
  3. Heat olive oil, maple syrup and sugar in a small saucepan just until dissolved, it doesn’t need to boil.
  4. Add the wet ingredients at once to the oat mixture and mix well with a fork or spoon, making sure it coats everything.
  5. Spread on a large baking sheet (preferably with 1-2 inch borders) in an even layer, and bake for about 1 hour, removing from the oven and moving it around the pan and spreading evenly again three or four times during this time, so it bakes evenly.
  6. It will still feel wet, but after an hour, it will be golden brown, and some parts will be dried.
  7. Remove form the oven.
  8. Add the cranberries or raisins. You can add them during the last 5 minutes, but I like to add it when I take it out of the oven. Why? Because too much baking and they dry out and harden, and sometimes get bitter, especially raisins. 
  9. Let the granola cool completely, moving it around at first so it doesn’t clump too much. 
  10. Store in jars with tight lids or an airtight container at room temperature, in the fridge or freezer.
  11. Serve with fresh fruit, milk and more maple syrup if you want.


Add-ins. I like to add coconut and cocoa nibs to my granola. Also, use a different citrus zest, spices, combination of nuts and/or dried fruit. I do highly recommend using sliced almonds (no matter what other nut you add) because they provide a crunch that is amazing and can't be achieved with other types of nuts. 

Drying the oats correctly. This is the key to a crunchy granola. The oats are impregnated with a mix of olive oil and maple syrup, that is warmed with some brown sugar. This sticky mess is then baked at a low temperature (very important) to dry the wet mixture, resulting in a caramelized granola, every part coated until it hardens.

Slow baking. It's important to give it the time it needs in the oven. If it doesn't dry it will not keep well, and it will be chewy without being crunchy, like a piece of regular toast vs an oven dried toast, the latter keeps for weeks.

Baking pan. The type of pan/amount of oat mixture ratio is important. I use sheet pans or cookie sheets, so the granola is spread as much as it can and is more easily dried before it colors too much. A golden color is great and good for the caramel flavor, but it should be dried further. If you put too much oat mixture in a smaller pan it will take too long to dry out in order to stay crunchy.

When to take it out of the oven. Follow the time given in the recipe, and stir it a few times during the baking time. It will still feel wet when you take it out of the oven, but it will harden as it cools. You'll get the hang of it when you start making it regularly. Because you will. One batch of homemade crack granola and there's no turning back. You're spoiled for life.

Oats. I recommend the traditional or rolled kind. They're sturdy and have a great crunch. Instant oats just don't work as well.

Gluten free. Use certified GF oats for a gluten-free option. You can buy it online: Quaker Gluten Free Old Fashioned rolled oats or Anthony's Organic rolled oats.

  • Author: Paula Montenegro
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 60 minutes
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


  • Serving Size: 1/8
  • Calories: 454
  • Sugar: 24.4 g
  • Sodium: 293.7 mg
  • Fat: 23 g
  • Carbohydrates: 53.2 g
  • Protein: 7.3 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg