I don’t know what is causing the buttery smell in this granola — but when it bakes, it smells like butter. It’s heavenly. I’m guessing it’s the sorghum or the coconut oil (or a combination of the them both) — and probably the pecans too!
Back in my senior year in college, I was living in a cooperatively-run house called Fletcher Collective (I’ve mentioned this experience several times before, but I’m just making sure you’re paying attention!). We bought all of our food collectively (which, as you can imagine, caused some conflicts, but suprisingly few, given there were 10+ different mouths to feed) and mostly in-bulk, saving a lot of money that way (and now I buy most of my groceries in bulk too — saving lots of $, even though it’s just me to feed).
The only downfall (or maybe this was a disguised fortune?) to the way we bought our groceries, though, is that there was rarely a quick snack you could grab and take on your way to class or work — you had to kind of work for it. There were more than enough ingredients in the house, but you’d need to put a little effort into making them into something you could eat. Hence, I did make a lot of “one-minute” trail mixes, a mixture of different nuts, seeds, and dried fruit, which kept me going until dinner but wasn’t the most satisfying lunch. To combat this issue, we had as one of our chores for each month the “guff food” person (“guff” is how we referred to food that was shared by the house — anyone could eat it, versus some items we bought personally, such as luxury items we didn’t splurge on as a house — how the people who came before me came up with that name, I have no idea). The “guff food” person would make grab-and-go snack items for the house to share once a week.
Well, my point to all of this (after rambling on for a while about something you may or may not find interesting, sorry!) is that I have that same problem of not having something I can put together and eat in 10 seconds or less, without sacrificing nutritional value, since I try to only buy food items that are in their least processed/most raw form. In order to have some easy snack items at arm’s length, I have to put some extra time into preparing them so I can have something when hunger strikes. In this case, I made this butter pecan granola, which is beyond easy to make, requires 45 minutes tops (depending on how fast you can throw all of the ingredients together in a bowl), and only 10 minutes of actual hands-on time and during the rest you can blog, have a cup of tea, or make your pup’s day and have a dog party (obviously the preferred thing to do). Then you can have a bowl of granola with your favorite nondairy milk to reward yourself for all of your hard work and store the rest in a glass jar for the next time you need an easy snack! And making homemade granola is so much cheaper than buying granola at the store, especially if you buy all of the ingredients in bulk. If everything else I’ve said about this recipe hasn’t sold you yet, I bet saving some money will!
Butter Pecan Granola
This recipe uses locally-grown pecans and sorghum! If you live in northeastern Missouri like me, you can find these products locally at Local Harvest. If not, feel free to substitute with a different liquid sweetener if you can’t find sorghum in your region (brown rice syrup would be a good one in this recipe).
- 3 cups rolled oats
- 1/2 cup oat bran
- 1/2 cup wheat germ
- 1/2 cup sorghum (update: this amount of sorghum might be too sweet — I recommend halving this amount and seeing how you like it, but only if you’re using sorghum; other liquid sweeteners should be fine at this amount.)
- 2 tbsp. blackstrap molasses (optional; if using sorghum, you might not need it, as sorghum has a similar taste to that of molasses)
- 1/4 cup pecans, chopped
- 1/4 cup hulled sunflower seeds
- 1/2 cup coconut oil + more to coat pan (you may substitute with olive oil, but the coconut oil is recommended in this recipe)
- 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- a few pinches of salt
- Preheat oven to 325. Grease a large casserole dish or two baking sheets.
- Combine all ingredients except for dried cranberries (these will be mixed in after baking) in a large bowl.
- Transfer to prepared casserole dish or baking sheets. Bake for 25 minutes, stirring once in between and watching in the last few minutes to make sure it does not burn.
- Mix in the cranberries. Store in an airtight container. Enjoy with nondairy milk or yogurt, over ice cream, or by itself as a trail mix.