I’ve never been a “granola” kind of girl. Growing up in Georgia – granola wasn’t really part of my everyday diet. What I liked to eat for breakfast or brunch back then was chicken fried steak with a generous helping of country style gravy. Those high school days of high calorie meals are over. I’ve gotten older and my metabolism is just not quite the same anymore. Oh the pains of aging.
Derrick on the other hand loves granola and rarely ate “sugar” cereal growing up. So we’ll buy a box of Peanut Butter Cap’n Crunch for me (or I sneak it into the house more less) and then some flax seed granola for him. Last Saturday I bought Derrick a bag of Brooke’s (Food Woolf) granola at the 2nd Annual LA Food Blogger bake sale. I knew Derrick would love it! Well, I tried some of that homemade granola goodness and I was pretty impressed. So impressed that I insisted that we go out the next day to hunt down the ingredients to make my very own batch. So I’m putting everything that I love into this granola recipe. It’s chalk full of coconut, almonds, dried cranberries, pineapples and mangoes… it’s like a tropical granola. It is then coated with a delicious sweet maple and brown sugar syrup. It’s great on yogurt, with milk, as an ice cream topping and of course straight up. It’s sweet – but in a good granola kind of way.
So maybe living in California has turned me into a granola kind of girl…or maybe I didn’t have great granola until recently. Either way – you should give it a try… who knows you might end up liking it!
Coconut Mango Granola
Prep: 10 mins Cook time: 20 mins
1/3 C light brown sugar, lightly packed
½ C granulated sugar
¾ C plus 2 Tbs maple syrup
½ tsp vanilla extract
4 C old fashion rolled oats (not quick cooking oats)
2 C unsweeten coconut (not finely/fancy shredded coconut, but the coconut that looks like “ribbons”)
1 C raw whole almonds, coarsely chopped
1/8 tsp salt
½ C dried cranberries
½ C dried diced pineapples
½ C coarsely chopped dried mangoes
Preheat oven to 350º.
In a large mixing bowl, add oats, coconut, almonds and salt. Using your hands toss the ingredients to combine.
In a medium sauce pan over medium heat, combine the brown sugar, granulated sugar, maple syrup and vanilla. Stir until the sugar has dissolved. This should only take a few minutes. Pour syrup over the oat mixture and gently stir with a rubber spatula or large spoon to combine. Make sure the syrup and the oats are thoroughly mixed.
Pour mixture onto a baking sheet that is either lined with parchment or a silicone mat. Make sure that the mixture is an even layer on the baking sheet, depending on the size of the baking sheet you may have to bake the granola in two separate batches.
Bake on the middle rack for 15 – 20 minutes or until slightly golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool on baking sheet. Break up the granola into small and large pieces and then add the dried fruit. Gently toss to combine.
Can be stored in an air-tight container for a few weeks.