Thursday, July 19, 2012

Easy Crock Pot Granola

Here's a super simple recipe for crock pot granola. The recipe is very versatile and easy to customize - no raisins for me! I'm actually cooking a batch as I'm writing this. It smells SO good!

5 cups old fashioned rolled oats
2 tablespoons cinnamon
1 cup chopped nuts (I used pecans)
1 1/2 cups shredded coconut
2 tablespoons vanilla extract
3/4 cup butter
3/4 cup honey
1-2 cups dried fruit, chocolate chips, m&m's, etc.
Turn your crock pot on high. Dump in the oats, cinnamon, nuts, and coconut. Melt butter in microwave (about 20 seconds). Add the honey and vanilla, stir. Pour butter mixture into the crock pot and mix well, being sure to coat all the dry oats. Cook for about 2 hours on high with lid slightly cracked to allow steam to escape. You don't want soggy granola! Stir every 20-30 minutes to be sure the bottom isn't scorching. As the granola gets closer to being finished, it has a tendency to burn faster, so I actually turn my crock pot down to low for the last 30 minutes. 
Crock pot cooking temperatures vary and so will the cooking time, so just keep an eye on it. You'll know it's done when it starts to look golden brown and be dry. The granola will continue to crisp as it cools, so don't be too concerned that it's not crunchy when you take it out of the crock pot. Also, this recipe does not result in a  "clumped" granola, rather loose rolled grains - perfect as a yogurt mix-in!

Cool on wax paper-lined baking sheet. Mix in fruit/chocolate chips, if desired. Store in an air-tight container in the fridge for a few weeks or bag up and store in the freezer for months. ENJOY!

*Remember, the measurements for this recipe are not an exact science. Feel free to make adjustments. Case in point, substituting allspice for half the cinnamon, should you run out (like I did).

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