You know those Nature’s Valley granola bars you ate as a kid? The kind that were perfectly salty + sweet… but always crumbled and made a mess everywhere? They were my inspiration for this recipe – except that I wanted to make them pre-crumbled and sans-mess. And with less sugar than the Nature’s Valley kind.
Enter: Olive Oil Granola Clusters. Made with hearty, filling, and heart-healthy ingredients… and probably all things you already have on hand. I made the final test batch of these while visiting my parents’ house at the Jersey shore, and a huge mason jar’s worth of granola was gone in about two days. Oops. Safe to say it was a big hit.
A few things I like about this recipe:
- It’s tasty and crowd-pleasing, for adults and kids alike
- No crazy, complex ingredients
- Only 10-15 minutes of prep time
- It’s a great snack to make ahead for the week – and you can easily double (or triple!) the recipe if you want to make an extra large batch
- You can make it as chunky and cluster-y (or fine) as you want, depending on how you break the pieces apart. I’ve done both big clusters and made it like more of a traditional granola. Clusters are great for a grab-and-go snack. A traditional granola is great for sprinkling on things like oatmeal and yogurt bowls.
If you give my granola recipe a try, let me know how you like it!Print
Making homemade granola is way easier than you think.These sweet and salty olive oil granola clusters are an easy, healthy, crowd-pleasing snack. You can prep them ahead to have on hand for the week – and easily double the recipe, if you’re trying to feed a crowd.
- 2/3 cup real maple syrup
- 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
- 1 cup whole raw almonds, coarsely chopped
- 1/2 cup whole raw pecans, coarsely chopped
- 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
- Preheat oven to 350º F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper, and set aside.
- In a small saucepan, combine your wet ingredients and spices – maple syrup, olive oil, sea salt, cinnamon, and vanilla extract. Heat over medium-low until just warm, about 4-5 minutes, and whisk well. Note: we don’t want to mixture to come to a simmer!
- In a large mixing bowl, combine all dry ingredients – oats, coarsely-chopped nuts, and sunflower seeds. Pour maple syrup mixture over top, and toss until all of the dry ingredients are well-coated with the wet.
- Spread granola evenly on your prepared sheet pan. Gently press it down with a spatula so it forms a large, even rectangle.
- Place in the oven, and bake for 25 minutes. After 25 minutes, rotate your pan 180º so it will cook evenly from front to back. Bake for 15-20 more minutes, until crispy and a light golden brown.
- Let granola cool fully (this is key for getting good chunks), then break up into piece sizes of your choosing.
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