Learn all the secrets to making perfect large-cluster granola with this easy recipe! Perfectly huge and crunchy granola clusters with lots of almond flavor.
I’m gonna let you in on a little embarrassing, juicy-juicy secret of mine: I am the world’s hugest sucker for clustery-granola.
So obsessed. SO dang-obsessed, you guys…
Sorry was that a lame confession? The only reason that this somewhat of an embarrassment is because of the fact that I have been known to pluck all (yes, ALL) of the granola clusters off the baking sheet before they’re even cool and just eat them all right then and there. No cereal bowl or milk even needed.
I might even just steal the whole baking sheet and tiptoe off to a closet to do my cluster-munching in private.
Yep. Me with my granola clusters = ZE-RO self-control.
Hey, but at least it’s healthy-stuff I’m addicted to! That makes all the difference. Or at least that’s what I tell myself as I’m cluster-crunching….
This granola has been put through pretty much just the ringer of recipe-testing. The granola I was searching for HAD to have my beloved large-clusters. Had to have that perfect delicate almond flavor. And lastly HAD HAD HAD to be idiot proof-ly-easy.
This granola-quest proved to be quite a bit harder than I thought it would….all the many failed batches were so teeny-tiny and non-clustery I pretty much bawled all over the place and I was all set to say goodbye to my cluster-dreams.
Until…..I remembered a tip I read in Cooks Illustrated about making granola. It’s called: Don’t stir the granola.
And you know what? It worked, it worked, it WORKED! All the times I had made granola before, I’d always stirred it a few times while it baked, but it turns out that this is the worst thing you can do if you want large-cluster granola.
Also, no granola-stirring = less work. No babysitting the oven. WIN.
Next on my granola to-do list was the flavors. I really want almonds to be the star of this granola and for those flavors to really shine through. Slivered almonds and almond extract delivered these flavors and were complimented by the old-fashioned rolled oats (always, always use these in granola!) shredded coconut, flaxseeds, chia seeds, and just a hint of cinnamon and vanilla extract to bring all the flavors together.
I’m gonna let you in on a not-so-secret ingredient I depend on for getting the perfect crunch in granola: It’s melted coconut oil. I always use coconut oil in my granola, because it ALWAYS gives granola that perfect texture, plus adds a lot of health benefits! Get your hands on some coconut oil, guys. It’s a pretty magical ingredient.
From there, it’s just maple syrup and coconut sugar for a light sweetness, and an egg white to hold everything together.
Sha-zam! There’s your gorgeous granola all ready for the oven.
Let me say it again just for clarification. Do NOT stir the granola even once while it bakes or afterwards while it’s cooling! Stirring the granola will break it up into tiny pieces and all those gorgeous clusters will be destroyed. Once the granola is done baking, remove it from the oven and let it cool completely. The granola will crisp up the longer it sits and once it’s cooled you will easily be able to break the pieces into gloriously-huge clusters.
And then…you will eat all the clusters by the handful. For real, once you munch on that first cluster, many more will follow.
Possibly all of the clusters will disappear just like that. And then you’ll have to make more. Cryin’ shame.
Oh, and quick tip here: DO NOT forget about the granola mix-ins. My personal favorites include raisins (don’t gag–it’s my fav!) dried cranberries, dried cherries, chocolate chips…YES!
See how perfectly huge, crunchy, and CLUSTER-Y this granola is?! Gosh, I love that word….
Gosh, I love this granola with every ounce of my large-cluster-granola-lovin’ soul. ♥
Have a cluster-munchin’ Monday. Details for the giveaway are below the recipe!
- 3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
- 1 cup slivered almonds
- 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
- 2 tablespoons flaxseeds
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 cup coconut sugar (or brown sugar)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup melted coconut oil
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 1 egg white, lightly beaten
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
- Dried fruit of your choice for mixing in (raisins, craisins, ect)
- Preheat oven to 300F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine oats, almonds, coconut, flaxseeds, chia seeds, cinnamon, sugar, and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk oil, syrup, egg white, and extracts until smooth. Pour over dry mixture and stir until just moistened.
- Evenly spread granola mixture onto prepared baking sheet and pat flat with a spatula. Bake granola at 300F 45-50 minutes or golden and edges start to brown (do NOT stir granola while baking or afterwards) Remove from oven and let granola cool completely, then break granola into clusters and transfer to an airtight container. Stir in dried fruit of your choice.
Hi. Me, again. Guess what, guys?! I teamed up with a bunch of my best blogging ladies and we’re giving away another $300 Amazon Giftcard to one lucky reader!
Is today your lucky day? I’m thinking yes. 😉 To get your name into the drawing, use the PromoSimple widget below to fill out the mandatory entries. Then you can get more entries into the drawing by filling out the optional prompts. More entries = Better chance of winning!
This giveaway begins February 2 and will end February 9th. Winner will be notified by email.