Make your own healthy homemade granola and add-in whatever extras your family loves leaving behind extra sugar, unhealthy oils and fillers
Why Homemade Granola is the Best
We love oats. I’m pretty sure that we could eat oatmeal for breakfast everyday for the rest of forever and no one would complain. As much as we like oatmeal, we may possibly love granola just as much. The kind you buy in the store is not only pricey, but is usually high in sugar, contains unhealthy fats and oils, and is also full of fillers and preservatives. Our homemade granola is both inexpensive and only contains 5 simple ingredients. This recipe is so easy that you will be surprised you haven’t made it before. This homemade granola recipe makes a TON so you can make it once and then eat it up for a couple of weeks. Or give some to a friend or neighbor and they will love you forever. (I usually double the recipe and give some away and eat it myself for a couple of weeks)
The Best Add-ins for Homemade Granola
There are so many delicious foods to add-in to homemade granola making it different every time you make it. Some of our favorites are:
- Dried cranberries
- Coconut flakes
- Sliced almonds
- Chopped Pecans
- Chia Seeds
- Flax Seeds
- Dried Cherries
- Chocolate chips (add after it is cooled)
- Pumpkin Seeds
How to Make 5 Ingredient Homemade Granola
First begin with your rolled oats. Don’t use the quick cooking kind – they aren’t hearty enough for this recipe. Just good old fashioned rolled oats. Get out a very large bowl for this. Then you will add some coconut oil, honey and vanilla and a bit of brown sugar. You can add more or less honey depending on how sweet you like it. I like it a little less sweet, especially if I am eating it with milk for breakfast.
You can use any type of nut in this recipe, or no nuts at all if your kids have allergies. We love almonds or pecans. I chop them up into smaller pieces before I put them in.
Mix everything into your extra large bowl (if you are doubling) and just large bowl if not. It will feel like it is still kind of dry, but keep stirring for a while to get everything coated nice and good.
Take your mixture and spread it onto a baking sheet. If it isn’t the non-stick kind, spray it with cooking spray before. If you double the recipe you will need 2 baking sheets.
Then pop it into a preheated oven at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes. You need to watch it carefully and stir every 5 minutes to make sure it bakes evenly. If you don’t stir it then the top layer will get really done, and the bottom layer won’t get baked at all. I set a timer for 5 minutes to make sure I remember to stir.
While it is baking, you can get your other mix-ins ready. I am kind of a granola purist and so I don’t like a lot of ‘stuff’ in my granola. Here are some ideas that would be yummy though if you like the extras. Nuts (we already talked about those), dried fruit, coconut, sesame seeds. You will add these in after it is baked, or in the last 5 minutes – except the nuts. I bake mine with the granola because they get all toasty and crunchy. Yum.
Once it is done it should look golden brown. I love wide cut coconut in my granola. Let it cool a bit and then stir it to break up any big pieces. I store mine in mason jars (I have the big 1/2 gallon size, but any size would work) Tie a bow on it and it makes a perfect neighbor gift!
What Do You Put Homemade Granola On?
Of course our go-to is to sprinkle it on top of yogurt with fresh fruit. The crunchy granola with the creamy and smooth yogurt and the freshness of the fruit is the perfect combination in our opinion. But if you want more than just yogurt, we actually wrote an entire post on 14 Ways to Use Granola
Is Granola Healthy?
This is definitely a subjective question. Most granola recipes are made of oats, a sweetener, oil and then a variety of add-ins. A lot of store-bought granola has a high amount of added sugar which means if you pour a bowl of granola for breakfast, you could be eating more than 600 calories! We like to eat granola in smaller amounts anyway – more as a topping than as the main dish. When you make your own, you definitely control how much sweetener is added. We like our granola on the less sweet side and so can cut a lot of sugar out of the recipe. Play around and see what your family likes!
MORE GRANOLA RECIPES:
5 Ingredient Granola
- 6 cup oats, dry
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup coconut oil
- 1/3 cup honey
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup walnuts, chopped
- 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
- 1/2 cup raisins, seedless
- 1/2 cup cranberries, dried
- 1 cup coconut flakes
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a large baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
- Mix oats and brown sugar together.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the oil, honey and vanilla.
- Pour over dry mixture and stir to coat thoroughly. Add in chopped nuts, and desired seeds at this point.
- Spread on baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes.
- Stir frequently (every 5 minutes) to ensure even baking. It should be golden brown when it is done.
- Let it cool on the baking sheet and then break up any large pieces. Stir in dried fruit and coconut, if using.
- Store in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks.
I'm a registered dietitian, mom of 4, avid lover of food and strong promoter of healthy habits. Here you will find lots of delicious recipes full of fruits and veggies, tips for getting your kids to eat better and become intuitive eaters and lots of resources for feeding your family.Learn More about Natalie
O you just sprinkle in trail mix? Do you have a granola bar recipe?? As usual you know I looove your blog 🙂 I rely on you 🙂
This is one of our favorite granola bar recipes: http://blog.superhealthykids.com/2012/05/grab-and-go-granola-bars/. For trail mix, I just add other things in with the granola. Dried fruit, whole nuts, sometimes M&Ms. Be creative because you can really do anything!
I would agree with this except for the canola oil, which is a low quality, processed oil that increases inflammation in the body. We’ve made granola before with melted, organic butter.
I like using coconut oil in place of canola oil. I also put wheat germ in my granola.
Hey Natalie! Love your posts. I was also going to say, have you ever tried coconut oil in it? It’s better for you and so delish!
Thanks so much!!!!
just wondering…do you use the same amount of the coconut oil as the canola?thanks
Wanted to share this comment from Breanna: This was the first time ever making granola and using coconut oil. I have to say it is amazing and a total hit with my kids! I think next time though i may add a bit more honey or less oats, as i like my granola to clump together a little more. I wasn’t sure totally how to go about using the coconut oil because it is a solid (little strange). so i boiled some water and placed a glass measuring cup in there and scooped some of the coconut oil in there until it turned to a liquid. i measured out the 1/2 cup like you have for the canola oil and it is so yummy and there is this yummy under flavor of coconut. also, i oiled the pan with the coconut oil too, worked great. i added sunflower seeds and raisins to my first batch. i am SO happy i found your website and actually tried this recipe! thank you SOOOOO much for your inspiration! p.s. the smell was awesome while it was baking…..i followed recipe as stated on your recipe.
great recipe! thanks for sharing!
Can you sub an equal amount of real maple syrup for the honey?
I am sure you could although it would alter the flavor a bit. I’m sure it would still be delicious though!
If you replace oil with butter, is it the same quantity?
Made it with maple syrup, toasted pecans, and TJ’s dried berry blend this weekend. Delish!
Yes, if the butter is melted then it would be the same quantity.
you really don’t need the oil or the brown sugar, the honey and vanilla give it enough sweetness – especially if you add some dried fruit.
Glad I found this recipe, looks amazing. I think I will try using the coconut oil and maybe organic coconut sugar instead of brown sugar. Thank you for the tips on the coconut oil Natalie. Can’t wait to try this. I’ve been buying some from work that they make in the kitchen. Now I can save money by making my own. Thank you.
I LOVE granola. Also think the store bought is very pricey and not as healthy with all the added stuff they put into it. Would 100% Whole Wheat Old fashioned oats work for this recipe?
Do you know the Nutritional facts on this? Or how many calories a serving is?
I made this today and it burnt…I think I will try butter next time and lower the heat. I stirred it every 5 minutes but it was starting to burn after 10. I liked the taste though (before it burnt that is!)
Mine did too. I think I’ll lower the heat to like 300 next time and stir more frequently. I’m glad I only did half a batch because I don’t think it’s going to be edible. I’m excited to try it again because it looks so yummy!
Though I enjoy making a lot of different things at home I’ve never made my own granola before. The fact that it would be so easy to do simply never occured to me before but now that I’ve seen your recipe I really can’t wait to try it. My son’s a little older now but that doesn’t mean I’m not still working on getting him healthy snacks. This is one of those that would be not only easy and quick to make but also healthy for him to eat. And I’m sure he would love it too. (Plus it’s good for me and my husband :))
Hi, I am wondering have do you think steel cut oats would work for this?
Darn! So sorry about that. I think some ovens cook faster than others and it probably makes a difference where your oven rack is. Good idea lowering the heat – good luck!
Coconut oil would be yummy!
I have made it with coconut oil and it is delicious! Good luck.
Yes I would use the same amounts. If the coconut flavor is too strong for you, then you could decrease the amount by a little.
I think it would probably extremely crunchy – if you like that texture then go for it!
What position do you recommend for your oven rack? I have been looking for a good recipe for this and I have been using coconut oil in place of butter and I love it and it is so good for you Thank you.
You can just have your oven rack on the middle setting. Putting it too close to the top will make it more likely to burn.
Looks fantastic! We are trying to use less and less sugar. Is their an alternative we could use to the brown sugar? Thanks!
I don’t use any oil in mine, I substitute the oil with equal amount of honey or equal amount of syrup. So much better than the oil taste in the granola.
Sugar Twin has a brown sugar alternative. My family is diabetic and we can use it as a nice brown sugar substitute.
Tonight is my second attempt making it. I think I over tasted them just a bit the first time, but it still came out just fine. I added raw nuts (I find raw cashews – which taste as good as toasted – and raw, or “natural”, almonds at my local store) to mine. At the beginning, of course, so they get tasted too! 🙂 Love this, can’t wait to play around with it, and make some for church when we come back from summer break!
Can you make this without the oil/sugar? Alternatively, can you please suggest a low fat alternative? I’m trying to lose weight & Im looking to replace unhealthy supermarket version with my own home made version. I would also like to make it as a healthier alternative for my family. Thank you.
I use flax seeds instead of sesame. Same texture & better for you. I also add wheat germ.
Do you use quick oats or old fashioned?
Am I the only one who did not like this recipe? I followed the measurements, and added some chopped pecans and flax seed to toast, turned every 5 minutes and added raisins when it was out of oven. It was dry and like cereal. It never stuck together. I expected some crunchy clusters, but nothing. Second batch I added more honey and sugar and it clustered more, but that should be clear in the recipe.
Made it and love it! Thanks for all the great recipes!!
hi , can we replace honey with maple syrup or any other option you can suggest ?
Guys and Gals, it’s a basic recipe. You make it exactly as it says the first time. The next batches you make, you play with the recipe. If it was too sweet the first time, cut down the sugars… If it was oily for you, cut down the oils. If it wasn’t clumpy enough, add more honey. If you want to try it with a good quality maple syrup… Or another “like” ingredient – do so. If you don’t like canola, try a different oil. Don’t like a particular ingredient, switch it for one you do like, with the same amount. Recipes are not law. Some items can be changed for others. Play with it. Come up with your own unique version… Enjoy.
Maple syrup would work great.
You can use both, but I prefer old fashioned.
Yes – we LOVE coconut oil in this!
We don’t analyze our recipes on the blog, but we do with our meal planning subscription. You can check it out here: https://www.superhealthykids.com/subscribe.php
You can definitely leave out the brown sugar, and just add the honey. You can reduce the amount of oil, but I wouldn’t remove it altogether. Good luck!
This is a good recipe. I used half coconut oil and half sunflower oil (what I had on hand), and instead of rolled oats a “7 grain cereal” that included a bunch of other good stuff. It toasted up very quickly – I needed to check it and stir much more frequently than 5min (I could tell by the smell). This is a solid set of instructions for making granola!
Thanks! Love your changes!
I Just wanted to say thanks for sharing this receipe. It is the 3rd recipe from the Internet that I have tried and this receipe will be one that I will be making again and again often. I used crisco canola oil and crown corn syrup I don’t think I did anything different and find it tastes very, very close to Kellogg’s low fat granola and it looks almost just like it.
Actually the only thing I did do different was I used 3 cups whole oats, 2 cups quick oats and 1 cup minute oats and it turned oat perfect.
This is Exactly! what I was looking for and I’ve been searching for weeks and today was the first time I came across this recipe, no other recipe that I’ve seen online can compare to this.
I used all the different oats because I had 3 different sizes and all 3 bags were all open anyways, I only had 3 cups of the whole oats and the other two I needed to use so I figured I would see how it would turn out. It turned out perfect.
Where i used smaller oats the amount of liquid I was worried it wouldn’t be enough but it did ended up to be just enough.
Next time I’ll have to use the quick and minute oats to get them used I’m guessing I’ll have to add a little extra oil and syrup because the powdered minute oats absorb a lot.
I didn’t use any of the optional ingredients or any other not listed.
My boyfriend agreed that this was the best recipe and this recipe is the perfect base start for granola bars with a tiny bit of tweaking.
I normally don’t write a review but this recipe for as good as it turned out deserves to be noted.
Best Granola ever!! I have added sunflower and chia seeds. I just want to have breakfast all the time ?
Wish it had more “clumpiness” to it. Good flavor otherwise!
Delicious!! I added the sunflower seeds, flaked almonds, coconut and dried cranberries.
This was very delicious. I don’t like buying granola from the store because of all the additives. This worked great with my homemade kefir and a few raspberries sprinkled in. Thanks!
We are so glad!
Love the flavor! Kids enjoyed it!
What did I do wrong? It did not stick but came out as cereal. Also 350 degrees burned everything. Any suggestions?
PLEASE tell me the nutritional info is for the whole entire batch of 12 portions and NOT for a 1/12 portion, or that would be an insane amount of calories for a little bowl of breakfast. !!!!!
Hi Eileen! Yes, no worries. The nutrition facts are for the whole batch. We just recently added nutrition data to our recipes and we’re still ironing out the kinks so they appear for serving size. Thanks for being a perceptive reader, and for pointing this out to us!
Is it dried coconut flakes or fresh?
Dried coconut flakes, Eva
Thanks for clarifying the nutrional breakout. 31g of sugar in a serving is like super sweet ice cream. I like it at less than 4g. How many servings in this batch? 12 at 1/2 cup?
This recipe makes a good 12 cups – typically a serving of granola would be 1/2 cup and so this recipe would make 24 servings. Let me know if you have other questions. Thanks!
Hi, what is a good coconut oil substitute?
You could use another vegetable oil – avocado or even a light olive oil.
Great! I made it all the time it’s simple easy and delicious!
Granola is too expensive in the markets and very cheap at home with what ever we have! I just add the extra ingredients different every time! Today I put chia and flaxseed with raisin!
Thanks for sharing your additions! So glad this is a hit for you. 🙂
I’m glad I tried this recipe but it is not my favorite. I didn’t realize until after trying some, there is no spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, etc) so it’s kind of bland.
Also, I used compostable parchment paper which really helped move the granola away from the sides when I stirred it.
Another recipe had similar ingredients and baked at 250 for 75 minutes (stir half way) so that is an option here as well (just always check so it doesn’t burn!).