Customizable Granola

Granola is a great breakfast or snack option - crunchy, nutritious, and packed with protein and fiber. Even better, it’s easy to switch it up and customize with your pick of yogurt, fruits, or other toppings, to keep your breakfast from being mundane. Being pretty hardcore chocolate lovers, we’re big advocates for including a little bit of chocolate in the first meal of the day. Perks of chocolate in your breakfast: cacao has naturally occurring caffeine and theobromine to kick start your day...also it’s delicious!

Granola itself is super versatile and is a great way to use up bits and bobs of leftover grains, nuts, seeds, dried fruit, and chocolate!  Here are some of our guidelines for customizing your granola recipe:

It’s all about the ratios. 4 parts dry to 1 part wet to 1½ parts of other tasty fixin’s. But, let’s break it down a little further.

Dry Ingredients:  

Includes your grains, nuts, and seeds.  A good general guideline here is 2-3 parts grains to 1-2 parts nuts/seeds.  Grains could be rolled oats (not instant); other grain-based flakes like barley, wheat, quinoa, etc. (or coconut flakes), or puffed grains like quinoa, millet, and amaranth.  Nuts and seeds are pretty self-explanatory, but give any large nuts a rough chop.  Another option would be to steer clear of the starches/gluten and only use nuts and seeds (no grains) – though we would recommend using a variety of nuts and seeds, not just 4 cups of chia.  But hey, who are we to say there’s a wrong way to make granola?  Experiment with what sounds tasty to you!

Wet Ingredients:

Includes your fat and sweetener of choice.  There’s some interpretive wiggle room here but we have some guidelines for you to follow.  For a sweeter granola, use ½ part sweetener and ½ part fat.  If you’re going for more savory vibes, try ¼ - ⅓ part sugar and ¾ - ⅔ part fat.  Fats could be butter, coconut oil, ghee, avocado oil, etc.  Sweetener could be dry and/or wet like table sugar, brown sugar, coconut sugar, honey, agave, date syrup, etc.  The world is your oyster and all that!

Compact Flavor:

You can jazz up the flavor a bit with some herbs, spices, citrus zest, and/or extracts.  We’d suggest about 2 - 4 teaspoons total to about 5 cups of wet and dry.

The Fixin’s:

About 1 ½ parts of extra goodness after the granola is baked, like dried fruit and, naturally, we’re going to say, “heck yes, add the chocolate.”  But it is technically optional.  You can chop up any of our plethora of chocolate bars, chocolate discs, or cacao nibs into the mix to add that extra layer of chocolatey goodness and dimension of flavor.

Example recipe:

Dry | 4 Parts Total

2½ cups rolled oats
1 cup chopped pecans
½ cup chopped almonds
½ cup chia seeds
½ cup pepitas
½ tsp ground spices (like cinnamon/garlic/ginger)
½ tsp salt
1 tsp zest
1 tsp vanilla (leave out if you’re going for savory vibes)

Wet | 1 Part Total

½ cup butter/coconut oil (use brown butter for some extra nutty deliciousness)
¼ cup brown sugar/sugar
¼ cup honey/agave

Fixins’ | 1-1½ Parts Total

½ cup chocolate chunks
½ cup dried apricots, chopped
½ cup dried cherries

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 275oF and prep a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Combine all the dry ingredients in a bowl.
  3. Melt the fat/oil, if needed, and add to your sweetener.
  4. Pour the wet ingredients over the dry and gently mix until thoroughly combined/coated.
  5. Spread mixture evenly over the parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake for about 35-45 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes until golden brown.
  6. Let cool completely.
  7. Break the granola into chunks. Add the dried fruit and chocolate chunks.  
  8. Store in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

Whether you snack on your granola creation handful by handful or sprinkle it on top of your yogurt, it’s sure to be delicious!  Snap a photo and share it with us on social media by tagging @tchochocolate and #TCHOmade.  We can’t wait to see what you come up with!