Cocoa Granola

12 Feb

This is really easy and cheap compared to store-bought granola. Omit the almonds if you like, substitute canola oil for the coconut oil, or bulk it up with some dried fruit.

The cocoa makes it exciting, the blackstrap molasses adds to the chocolatey flavor as well as gives it a good chocolatey color (and adds a smidgeon of its nutritional value).

Total baking time – 50 minutes
Makes approx 6 cups

(You may as well double the recipe since it keeps well)

4 cups rolled oats (old fashioned, cooks in 5 minutes kind of oatmeal)
2 Tbsp cocoa powder
1/4 cup ground flaxseed
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 c agave nectar
1/4 cup coconut oil (warmed to liquid)
1/4 c packed brown sugar
1 Tbsp blackstrap molasses
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 c slivered almonds
(Dried fruit or coconut flakes if you want)

1. Preheat the oven to 300′. Make sure the oven rack(s) are in the middle.
2. Lightly grease a large baking pan or two.
3. In a large bowl, toss the oats with the flax, cocoa and salt.
4. In a medium bowl or measuring cup, stir together the rest of the ingredients except the almonds. Whisk until smooth.
5. Pour the liquid mixture over the oats mixture and use your hands to combine them: grab and squeeze fistfuls of it together, until the oats are totally coated and saturated. You want it to be pretty clumpy and stuck together.
6. Spread the mixture evenly onto the prepared baking pans, making sure that some of the oat clumps are intact.
7. Bake for 15 minutes on the middle rack of the oven. Gently flip with a spatula.
8. Bake another 15 minutes, gently flip with a spatula, and sprinkle almonds evenly on top.
9. Bake another ten minutes, flip.
10. Bake another ten minutes and you’re finished!
11. If you want to add dried fruit or coconut flakes, do it now while it’s warm.
12. Let cool, and then store in an airtight container or ziploc bag.

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