A hearty gluten-free granola recipe loaded with oats, nuts, seeds, and dried berries and infused with coconut, maple syrup, and cinnamon. Perfect for breakfast or snack time, with milk, yogurt, or by the handful!
Once upon a time, there was a humble blend of oats, nuts, seeds, and berries that came together in perfect harmony to form a breakfast superstar. Its name was Granola, and it quickly became a beloved staple by all whose tastebuds experienced it's crunchy, golden clusters.
See ya later soggy cereal. HELLO Berry Granola.
🌟 Why you'll love this recipe
The smell of granola baking in the oven is reason enough to love this recipe, permeating the house with an amazing aroma that could beat out any Yankee Candle. Nutty, cinnamon-y, golden-brown goodness. Like a ray of sunshine in your nostrils. Or something oddly wonderful like that.
This homemade granola is loaded with a little bit of everything you'd expect in a hearty granola. It's perfect for:
- kickstarting your morning with a bowl of granola and milk
- as a tasty topping or addition to a bowl of oatmeal
- sprinkling on top of waffles or pancakes for a little extra texture and crunch
- grabbing by the handful as a mid-day snack
- topping on yogurt or a smoothie bowl
- creating a parfait layered with yogurt, granola, and fresh berries
- adding as a topping to these gluten-free blueberry banana muffins (just omit the dried berries in the granola)
Toasty, crunchy clumps made for eating so many different ways! Cereal, you've officially been shunned from the pantry.
🛒 Ingredients & suggestions
Let's break down this tasty medley of ALL the things that make a truly awesome granola.
- Gluten-free old fashioned rolled oats: Deliciously hearty, old fashioned oats (do not use quick cooking oats) are perfect in granola because of their chewiness and ability to retain their shape and texture after baking.
- Nuts & seeds: I tossed some walnuts, slivered almonds, and chia seeds into my granola but don't hesitate to use a mixture of other nuts and seeds that suit your fancy.
- Dried berries: Pick your favorites! Some of my favorites to throw in are dried cranberries, cherries, blueberries, strawberries, and raspberries. The more variety, the more merrier in my opinion.
- Coconut flakes: Unsweetened coconut is the way to go, otherwise the granola is at risk of tasting too sweet.
- Unrefined coconut oil: Oil helps the granola to turn golden and crisp when baked. If you don't like the taste of coconut you could substitute vegetable oil or olive oil, but I would argue that the coconut oil is almost undetectable.
- Sweeteners: Pure maple syrup, brown sugar, and honey. They all lend their own particular nuance of flavor and sweetness and also work as a binder to help create those tasty granola clumps we love so much.
- Kosher salt: It might seem like a trivial ingredient but don't skip the salt! Salt plays a major role in enhancing the flavors of the granola. Without it your granola may turn out tasting like it's missing something.
For a full list of ingredients and quantities see the recipe card at the end of this post.
🔪 Step-by-step instructions
Step 1: Add the coconut oil, maple syrup, honey, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt to a large bowl and mix to combine.
Step 2: Then add the oats, walnuts, almonds, coconut flakes, and chia seeds into the mixture and stir until fully incorporated and evenly moistened.
Step 3: Spread the granola mixture onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. Pop it into the oven to bake! Give it a stir about halfway through baking, pressing the granola mixture down onto the baking sheet before it continues to bake.
Step 4: Once the granola has baked and cooled, sprinkle the dried berries on top.
Step 5: Using your hands, break the granola into clumps. The size of the clumps is up to you!
Step 6: Store in an airtight container and enjoy anytime your craving a bowl of granola and milk, a yogurt parfait, a smoothie bowl, or just want a handful to snack on!
👩🍳 Recipe tips!
- Use a rimmed baking sheet. The granola needs to be stirred halfway through baking to evenly brown the granola. A rimmed baking sheet helps to keep it contained on the sheet while stirring, otherwise you may end up with granola on the bottom of your oven or all over your floor.
- To get those tasty granola clumps press the granola mixture down onto the baking sheet particularly after you've stirred it halfway through baking. Once the granola has finished baking, let it rest without stirring it until it has cooled.
- Don't add the dried berries to the granola until AFTER if has baked. You'll end up with very chewy berries that may just pull a molar out otherwise.
💭 Frequently asked questions
Oven temperature is the key to creating crunchy granola. The oven should be set no higher than 350°F to avoid the risk of burning the seeds, nuts, and coconut in the granola but also allowing it to dry out and become crispy and crunchy. If you feel like your oven temperature is not calibrated correctly (you can check this by using an oven thermometer), reduce the baking temperature and keep an eye on the granola, particularly as it nears the end of its bake time.
There are a few contributors in this recipe that aid in the formation of those dreamy granola clusters. The sweeteners (maple syrup and honey) can be thanked for helping the ingredients to stick together. Secondly, when the chia seeds get hit with the wet ingredients, they develop a gel-like consistency that helps everything to stick together. Lastly, allowing the granola to bake without stirring it once it reaches the halfway mark it crucial. Then once it finishes baking, it must be left to cool completely on the baking sheet undisturbed before breaking it apart into those coveted clumps.
It will last in an airtight container, or mason jar, for several weeks in a cool, dry place. Highly unlikely that it won't be eaten by then though!
Alrighty, go make a batch and let me know what you think in the comments below. Try this berry granola with milk, yogurt, turn it into a parfait, or just eat it straight by the handful. Like I am. Right now.
Enjoy all you granola cluster lovers! ♡
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Update Notes: This post was originally published in February 2016, but was re-published with updated photos, ingredient recommendations, step-by-step instructions, recipe tips, and FAQs in April 2023.