Granola is one of those foods that I would never have thought to make myself, yet now that I have on numerous occasions, I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to go back to the store-bought version. It’s incredibly easy (and cheap!) to make, and fun to try different flavors, all while knowing exactly what is going into the granola mix you make. In my house, granola doesn’t last long so the homemade version is perfect for us. It adds crunch to a bowl of yogurt and fresh fruit for breakfast in the morning or can be enjoyed on its own as an afternoon snack.
This particular granola recipe was inspired by this Chai Spiced Apple Pie recipe that Sally from Sally’s Baking Addiction created for Stemilt. I was so intrigued by using chai spices in an apple pie that I gave her recipe a try over the holidays. The pie was so good, perfectly spiced with the addition of cardamom a welcome change from the classic flavors we are all used to with apple pie.
After making a pumpkin pie spiced granola a few times, I was ready for something different. I found another recipe from Sally and used the oven temperatures and baking instructions she provided, yet came up with my own mix of ingredients and flavors mostly because they were what I had on hand. It turned out to be the best homemade granola I’ve made yet.
Old-fashioned oats, flaxseeds, almonds, pecans, honey, brown sugar, coconut oil, and classic apple pie spices combine to create the base of this homemade granola recipe. While I’m not a huge fan of the flavors of chai tea, I am a fan of adding cardamom to this granola recipe (and perhaps anything I make with apples in the future!). It has a unique sweet-spicy flavor with an incredible fragrance and goes great with nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves. Last but certainly not least, is a finely diced Pinata apple. This Stemilt-exclusive variety adds sweet and tart flavors, while also providing extra moisture to prevent the granola from overcooking in the oven. You can read more about Pinata apples here.
To get started with this apple chai spice granola recipe, you’ll want to mix your dry ingredients plus vanilla and spices together in a large bowl. Then, chop up a large-sized apple into one-inch (or smaller) cubes. If you can’t find Pinata, try another variety on our list of best baking apples to ensure the one you choose can withstand cooking temperatures. Melt the coconut oil and mix it with the honey, applesauce, and flaxseeds to create your liquid mixture that will help bond the oats and other ingredients. Finally, pour the oil-honey mix over the oats and stir to coat. Place it on a parchment-lined baking sheet and cook very carefully in an oven that was preheated to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
Cooking is by far the most challenging part in making homemade granola because it can quickly go from “not done” to “overdone and burnt.” You’ll want to check and stir the granola every 10 minutes to prevent burning. I cooked the granola on a large baking sheet for about 30 minutes and found that to be the perfect amount. You’ll want to remove the granola from the oven once the oil-and honey mixture has cooked, yet before it hardens too much since the granola will continue to bake once out of the oven. Allow the granola to cool for about 20 minutes. Then, either store in containers in your pantry or enjoy it right away. This homemade granola recipe can keep for 10 days, although it never lasts that long in my house!
Categorized in: Recipes