I love gluten-free granola. It is delicious and economical to make. I find I much prefer making my own, because it is so customizable to what we like and we know exactly what is in it. It lasts in the pantry for weeks (although it is eaten way before it would ever get stale). It has versatile uses too.
Recipe changes and ingredient choices
I originally got the recipe from the blog Spoon and Saucer. The site doesn’t appear operational anymore. I made a few changes to the original recipe. In the original they used all olive oil. I prefer to use half coconut oil and half olive oil. You can use any type of oil you prefer. Just keep in mind the taste profile. My family avoids canola, vegetable oil, corn oil, soy oil, and other highly processed oils. The way they are produced and the chemical make-up of the oil makes them extremely inflammatory in your body. We also avoid any that could be genetically-modified crops, just our own personal preference. I like the bit of sweetness the coconut oil gives to the overall flavor.
Oats, nuts and seeds
I used Organic, Gluten-free, Sprouted oats. I have used Gluten-Free and Organic Rolled oats that aren’t sprouted in the past. However, Oats (and other grains, seeds, nuts) have Phytic Acid. Phytic Acid stops your body from being able to absorb the minerals and nutrients in the oats.
Many grains have an enzyme Phytase that will help reduce the Phytic Acid (break it down), but oats have very little Phytase. Therefore, if you soak oats, you need to add an additional grain that is higher in Phytase. The grain that works for a gluten-free diet is buckwheat. You could add about 10% buckwheat to your oats to soak them, but it changes the taste. If you soak your oats, you will want to re-dehydrate them to use in granola. I find it is much better to use sprouted oats. The sprouting process breaks down the Phytic Acid. Luckily, you can find organic, gluten-free spouted oats commercially and not have to sprout oats yourself, and then process them into dried and rolled oats. The oats that I used were from Costco, but they also have them on Thrive Market.
I used raw cashew pieces and pecans, along with organic, sprouted pumpkin seeds. Sometimes, I soak my nuts to help with the Phytic acid, I am on the search for sprouted nuts too. In the meantime, I just used what I had on hand. I also used organic coconut flakes. If you can’t do nuts or coconut, you can substitute other seeds like sunflower seeds, hemp, or anything you like. If you add smaller seeds, just watch the time for baking so you don’t burn them.
The sweeteners are what give the crispy crunch and allow all the goodies to stick together in that wonderful granola texture. I use a combination of maple syrup and honey. I prefer to avoid refined sugar where I can. If you can’t do honey or want a vegan granola, you could use all maple syrup or add in something like coconut sugar or sucanat and just melt it in on low with your oils and sweeteners. Since I used coconut oil and raw honey, I put it in a small saucepan and heated it over very low heat, stirring frequently till melted. If the oils and sweeteners you are using are already liquid form you can just go ahead and mix them. Pour the oil/sweetener over your oat/nut/seed mixture and mix well to coat.
I use sea salt, the original recipe called for Kosher salt. Use to your own taste preferences. The salt brings out the sweetness and flavors, but the granola does not taste salty. I added cinnamon to my granola. I love cinnamon in my granola. You could add any spice you like or combo. A bit of pumpkin pie spice would be delicious. Vanilla extract is also in the original recipe. I make my own Vanilla Extract that is a double fold (strength) so I used a bit less than the recipe called for. My plan for the future is to try homemade vanilla salt in place of the regular sea salt. I added the salt, cinnamon and vanilla to the oil/sweetener mixture after I took it off the heat and before I poured it over the oats/seed/nut mixture. You could add it in however works best for you.
Preparation and baking
Once your mixture is all well coated with the oil/sweetener/spice mixture, you can spread it on sheet trays covered with parchment paper or a silicon baking mat. Place the sheet trays of granola in the pre-heated oven and make sure to turn the granola on each pan every twenty minutes. The original recipe said total 75 minutes. I did a double batch and find 60-65 minutes was plenty. I don’t like it overly dark.
After the granola is cooled, I pack it up into jars. You can store it in whatever container is convenient. I prefer glass mason jars (I try to avoid plastic containers unless I am freezing something). If I want trail mix with it, I add the dried fruit and chocolate ingredients after it is done cooking and cooling. I like to eat it on my yogurt with berries, it is even good on ice cream.
I linked the video below the recipe. In the video I made a double batch. Making a double batch, I used 3 sheet trays.
Gluten-free GranolaCourse: Breakfast, snack
3 cups organic, gluten-free oats (sprouted preferred)
2 cups various seeds, nuts, etc. (I used organic sprouted pumpkin seeds, pecans and organic cashews), chopped or sliced if large pieces
3/4 cups organic unsweetened flaked coconut
1/4 cup organic oil (I used half coconut and half olive oil…avocado would work too)
1/4 cup honey (I used raw and melted it over very low heat)
1/4 cup maple syrup
scant 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
- Preheat oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit. Line 2 sheet pans with parchment or silicon baking mats
- Mix oats, nuts, seeds and coconut in a large bowl
- Mix (if using coconut oil and raw honey, heat in small pan with sweeteners on very low heat till melted) oil, maple syrup and honey in a small saucepan or bowl. Mix in salt, vanilla and cinnamon. Stir till well mixed.
- Pour oil/sweetener/spice mix over oat mixture and mix until all the oats, nuts, seeds and coconut are coated in the oil/sweetener mixture.
- Spread evenly on prepared baking sheets.
- Place in oven. Stir contents every 20 minutes until nicely browned and mainly dry. Anywhere from 50-75 minutes. Check every 10 or even 5 minutes toward the end, you don’t want your mixture to get over browned or burned.
- Allow granola to cool on trays fully. Then with turner, loosen all the granola from the trays. Pack into an airtight container and store at room temperature for 2-3 weeks. You can freeze it for longer storage.