If you have ever made homemade granola you know how fresh and wonderful it is, the flavors are pure and you can adjust the ingredients and levels of sweet and salty just the way you like them. I feel that once you make your own granola it’s really hard to go back to a store bought version.
The one trouble I have with granola is baby sitting it in the oven. I must admit I have burned a batch or two of granola. So when I saw a recipe from Stephanie O’Dea, the slow cooker master, I decided to run with it. If you haven’t had a chance to check her out, I believe it’s worth the time. I have used plenty of her recipes and I own two of her books! Anyways, slow cooking granola seemed crazy but why not? The burn factor is reduced and I don’t have to sit by the oven and babysit the granola. It does require you to stir every 30 minutes so just pick a day you are home and go for it! I set my timer for every 30 minutes and got a bunch of house chores done as well as some updates to our veggie-scope!
Let’s get started:
Here are the ingredients I used, and remember, when making your own granola, you can change the add-ins to whatever you like!
- 1 cup pureed fresh pumpkin (you can use canned, but why would you, we have Springdell!)
- 5 cups of rolled oats (I used gluten free oats)
- 1/2 cup of local honey
- 1 cup of sliced almonds
- 1 cup of shredded coconut
- 1 heaping cup of chopped dried apricots
- 2 teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice
- 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- 2 Tablespoons of butter
So, for the pumpkin, start by scooping out the pumpkin glop (save those amazing seeds, you can even add them to the finished granola if you’d like!) Slice it, roast it, scoop it out, puree it and you are good to go.
Place your 5 cups of rolled oats to your slow cooker with 2 Tablespoons of butter.
Add in your 1 cup of pureed pumpkin and your 1/2 cup of local honey.
Add your 1 cup of almonds.
Stir it all up. **note, you don’t add the coconut or the dried fruit until later in the cooking process**
Set the slow cooker to high and place the cover slightly ajar so it can vent the moisture.
This will cook for 4 hours on high. Stir every 30 minutes.
After 2 hours it’s time to add the coconut flakes.
Then at the 3 hour mark it’s time to add the chopped dried apricots.
When the time is up spread your granola on a sheet tray to cool. It will crisp up a bit as it cools.
Seal it in an airtight container for storage. It is delicious and granola goes fast around here! Perfect fall treat with a simple yogurt, add milk to it, sprinkle it on pumpkin ice cream, whatever!