Sunday, December 21, 2008

Homemade Granola ~ A Healthy Christmas Treat!

This is a fabulous homemade granola recipe that I got off of the Food Network Channel (Ina Garten's recipe) last year and made more up this year to give as gifts to friends and neighbors. It is a healthy alternative to cookies and candy - of which I love and will pay for later! The cost to put these together is relatively inexpensive as well:
.10 per glass jar - a garage sale find (just clean them really good).
.25 ornament - I bought 2 dozen at Marshall's for 6.00
1 Fat Quarter (for fabric tops) - .99 at Joann's (makes 4 tops) = .25 per jar
.20 - Ribbon or cut up scrap fabric to make a bow
Granola - approx 2.50 per jar (depending on cost of ingredients)
.15 hang tag
total: 3.50 per jar
RECIPE:
4 cups old-fashioned rolled oats (don't use the quick oats)
2 cups sweetened, shredded coconut
2 cups sliced almonds (note: I used 1 1/2 cups and you can subsitute walnuts or pecans)
1 1/2 cups dried cherries - chopped (I leave mine whole)
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup good honey
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Toss the oats, coconut and almonds together in a large bowl. Pour the vegetable oil and honey over the oat mixture. Add the cinnamon and stir with a wooden spoon until all of the oat mixture is completed covered with the oil/honey. Don't leave any dry. Pour onto a LARGE baking sheet that has a RIM on it. Put the pan on the second to bottom rack inside your oven. Bake and stir with a spatula about every 3 minutes. Don't let it burn along the edges. Bake approximately 20-25 minutes - until a golden brown. Remove the granola from the oven and allow it to cool on the baking sheet. Give it a little stir now and then as it cools. The mixture will dry out as it sits there cooling off. Now I add my fruit at the very end to the cooked mixture. If you bake the fruit it becomes hard and can burn. You can even put your fruit in the last two minutes of cooking time if you like and it won't burn.
Note: instead of cherries, you can use raisins, craisins, cranberries, dried apricots or any other dried fruit you have on hand. You can also reduce the amount from 1 1/2 cups to just 1 cup.
TIPS:
If you don't have a large baking sheet you can use two regular size cookie sheets - just be sure that the sheets have an edge on them otherwise the granola will fall off the sheet and make a mess of your oven.
When measuring the oil and honey use a 1 cup measuring cup. First measure out the oil and then measure out the honey by pouring the honey into the oil. This way the honey won't stick to the measuring cup.
The granola is delicious served on top of vanilla ice cream, yogurt or served with milk.
Enjoy!

16 comments:

Becky said...

What a great idea for a gift. Thanks for sharing the recipe. Hope you have a very Merry Christmas.

Kathleen Grace said...

Beautiful, and a really easy recipe! Love it Becky, thanks:>)

Liz said...

Yum! I'm gonna try it! I love to give little gifts like this.

Merry Christmas!

~Liz

Brenda@Spareminute cottage said...

Thanks Becky I will be making this for sure.Love the be silly pic your hair looks great.
Merry Christmas
Brenda

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing, Becky! I don't know if I will do that this year but I am going to start a list of ideas for next year. The "Homemade Granola" will make it on that list. It's a wonderful idea.

Merry Christmas! Debbi

P.S. Does anyone else start planning for next Christmas before this one is over? I can't wait for Friday to go to all the after Christmas sales. HE! HE!

skoots1mom said...

can't wait to make it...

She'sSewPretty said...

My son's friend and his wife make granola every year and we look forward to it. I'll have to try your recipe. I've already baked fudge and cookies for all of the neighbors and friends. Now, it needs to be delivered before it ends up in my tummy! LOL
Have a wonderful Christmas!!

Jean said...

This is a wonderful gift and pretty to boot. I also like something that doesn't take forever. Thanks Becky
Jean in Virginia

Sheryl at Friendship Cottage said...

Glad you stopped by my site - and left a message! I've enjoyed my visit to your site - what a beautiful home you have. Hope you have a blessed merry Christmas.

the wild raspberry said...

what a wonderful idea...thanks for sharing.

Elyse said...

this looks very yummy. thank you for sharing! xo

Storybook Woods said...

This is a great gift idea. I love how you packaged them. Clarice

Rosie said...

I just found your blog via LeAnn at Simply Dandy Cottage. Your home is so lovely! I especially like your den! Thank you for sharing!
Rosie

Leigh said...

FABULOUS!

Dena ~ swaddlecottage said...

Wow Becky, you've shared some wonderful homemade treats here and I am cutting and pasting your notes :) Thanks for sharing, I love these ideas!!!

Hugs,
Dena

Linda said...

Yum! thank you for the recipe...the way the jars are decorated is so pretty too...hugs, Linda