I am very simple when it comes to my granola. I usually just put it on top of my smoothies or acai bowls, so I am not really concerned so much about the sweetness or fruity add-ins. My dad on the other hand can be a little specific. He likes his granola sweet and full of treats- dried blueberries, nuts, peanut butter- and most importantly it must be very crunchy. So I decided to post both recipes because my dads granola is basically a continuation of mine and definitely much more flavorful! Not to mention it will leave your kitchen reeking of delicious peanut butter.
4c gluten-free, organic oats
1 Tbsp cinnamon
1/4c raw organic agave nectar (or maple syrup, honey, etc.)
1.5 tsp pure vanilla
1/4c peanut butter (or any nut butter of your choice)
1c chopped nuts
1/2c dried blueberries
Preheat oven to 350F. In a large bowl mix the oats and cinnamon, then the agave and vanilla. This is where I stop for my granola. I pour the mix onto a silpat baking sheet (or a baking sheet sprayed with coconut oil) and bake in the oven for 15 minutes, rotating the mix with a spatula about halfway through until the oats are slightly golden. If you want to keep this healthy but still want to add in some flavor, try dried blueberries or sliced raw almonds. Also you can try using maple syrup for a more distinct flavor. You really can use anything- I'm interested in adding some cocoa powder next time (cocoa-peanut butter?!)
To continue with my dads beloved recipe, add in the peanut butter and stir. This can be a little tricky but it helps the granola form chunks- just try to incorporate it all together. Throw in the nuts and blueberries. I used a mix of cashews and glazed walnuts this time but pecans and almonds also work great. I let this bake for about 20 minutes, but if you want yours a little less crispy, try for 15-18 minutes. Remember the granola does get more crunchy as it cools so don't over cook them- try for a golden color instead. Again, stir the granola about halfway through or maybe even three times- the oats on the edges cook much faster than the oats in the middle of the tray. You don't want little burnt bites of oats! Once your granola is ready, remove from the oven and let cool. Store in a mason jar (surprise) or any other air-tight container. It tends to stay fresh for quite a while although it usually doesn't last long enough in my house to really know.