I’ve been baking my own granola for years now, usually inspired by the odds and ends I find when cleaning my pantry. It’s incredibly satisfying to empty the remnants of bags of nuts, a tub of dried mystery fruit, a jar of cinnamon, and a rubber-band wrapped package of quinoa in one fell swoop! In the process, I create a wide open pantry shelf AND breakfast of champions for weeks!
Armed with some photos I took during the recent production of 60 jars for a dear friend’s wedding, I’m finally putting this granola “recipe” on the Teaching Table blog.
As the air quotes suggest, this is barely a recipe but rather a set of suggestions and instructions for assembling goodness out of any combination of nuts & dried fruit, spice, seeds, oil & sweetener. Mix and match to create a personalized granola that suits your taste and needs (or uses what you find in the back of your pantry). You can even adjust the ratios of the dry ingredients. The amounts are relative — another vote for this solution to reduce food waste! Here’s a basic formula.
Pantry Clean-Out granola
What you need:
2 ½ - 3 cups rolled (not instant nor steel cut) oats
½ - 1 cup whole grains such as quinoa, millet and amaranth
2 - 4 tablespoons seeds, such as sesame, chia and flax
1 - 2 teaspoons of ground spice, such as ginger, cinnamon, or cardamom, or powders like cocoa and matcha tea
½ - 1½ cups nuts, such as almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts, cashews and pistachios
½ cup oil (melted coconut, canola, hazelnut, pistachio, grapeseed, or olive oil)
⅓ cup sweetener in syrup form, such as honey, agave or maple syrup
½ cup dried fruit, such as raisins, tart cherries, apricots, figs, peaches or apples, ¼ inch dice
What you do:
Some of my favorite combinations:
All of these start with rolled oats…
walnuts + cinnamon + canola oil + maple syrup + dried apples
pistachios + almonds + cardamom + sesame seeds + coconut oil + honey + dried apricots
almonds + cocoa powder + nut oil (hazelnut, walnut) + agave + dried cherries
cashews + ginger + quinoa + coconut oil + agave + coconut flakes + dried mango
matcha tea powder + cashews + coconut oil + agave + golden raisins
walnuts + pistachios + cinnamon + quinoa + grapeseed oil + honey + raisins