Good, healthy, WFPB granola is often quite expensive or not as delicious as you’d want. We’ll cover how to make a super simple 4-ingredient granola and go over further tips and tricks.
I love granola for its nutty, roasted flavor and crunch. Once you see how easy it is and the pervading smells from the oven charm your appetite you won’t want to go back to store-bought granola. It doesn’t even come close. I love homemade granola as a dry snack with chocolate and as a crunchy topping on my porridge!
Start with 4 Ingredients
Most recipes you see have a long list of ingredients and that discourages most people to make their own. In reality, you don’t need more than 4 ingredients to make yummy granola. And yes, from there you can simply add whatever you love and have at hand.
In this post, we’ll go over the possibilities and I’ll share some tips and tricks to get the most out of your time and ingredients.
Nuts or almonds
The full, aromatic flavor of roasted nuts is perhaps the best part of granola.
Molasses, syrups (like date, agave or maple), honey etc are some options. Any grade of maple syrups is fine. You don’t need to add much. Consider that you will probably add some fruits, be they dry or fresh when serving.
Seeds like sesame, chia, linseed, hemp, sunflower or pumpkin seed add a textural twist and enrich the nutrition of your granola. It is true that Omega-3 fatty acids can be damaged by heat, however, it has been shown that in the protecting matrix of the seed (even in its ground state) the fatty acids are not harmed (source). Hence, it is safe to bake seeds like chia or linseed.
This is optional. Oil gives the granola more flavor and some grounding. You want some liquid to help bring everything together so if you don’t wish to use oil you could try fruit juices, plant-based milk or tinned coconut milk. The latter would go especially well with maple syrup.
Water, Plant-Based Milk or Juice (optional)
Liquid ensures the granola will be extra crunchy, especially with a little flour. Liquid is also great to reduce the amount of oil you use. Most recipes rely mostly on oil to achieve crunchiness. Personally, I like to reduce the amount of oil to a fraction of what is used in conventional recipes and replace the rest with water, liquid or plant-based milk.
Use a little flour to make the granola more crunchy. Once the water dries out the long-chained starch and protein molecules will produce the crunchiness we care for in granola. Any grain or flour is suitable. You can even add a protein powder. Carob flour is another good addition due to its gentle comfort flavor and sweetness. You could save a little on the syrup if you add more carob flour.
Further Additions before Baking
- coconut flakes or coconut chips (grated coconut might burn, you can add them later)
- bran of any grain (i.e. oat bran)
- nut or seed butter (i.e. peanut butter, tahini)
- cocoa powder
- ground cardamom
- ground ginger
- finely chopped citrus zest (especially orange or tangerine)
Additions after Baking
- dried fruits
- coconut (grated, flakes, chips)
WFPB Granola Variations
Here is a combination that was somewhat inspired by a granola recipe by the now plant-based three Michelin star restaurant Eleven Madison Park.
- coconut chips
- molasses or maple syrup (or similar)
- (coconut oil)
Need more breakfast inspiration?
Here are 12 Sweet and Savory Oatmeal Variations
Get a beautiful collection of oatmeal recipe ideas that comes along with mouth-watering images.
Tips and Storage
If you are looking for new ingredients and combinations for your granola simply be inspired by appetite, recipes and granola you know from supermarkets.
Do set a timer because burning the granola is the biggest risk.
Make sure to keep it airtight in a jar to preserve the crunch. Keeping it in the fridge helps a lot! I make my batch of granola about every 6 weeks.
See? It’s really very simple. This way you can make sure you use top-quality ingredients and your granola won’t cost you a fortune. Their relatively low price and 25 min of your time every few weeks is all it costs.
Tahini & Molasses Granola is a take on a somewhat modern breakfast with culturally rooted flavor. You are also going to love my Tahini & Molasses Porridge.
Do you have any ingredients that you love in granola?
If you’ve made granola at home do you think it’s worth it?
Tahini & Molasses Granola
- 250 g oats
- 5 tbsp molasses
- 3 ½ tbsp tahini
- 30 g flour
- 4 tbsp chopped almonds
- optional: dried fruits, seeds, nuts, spice, flakes of choice
- Simply mix all the ingredients except for the dried fruits in a bowl. Bake for 20 min at 350°F / 180°C until golden brown. Let cool and keep in an airtight jar.
2 thoughts on “The Definitive Guide To Whole Food Plant-Based Granola”
Delicious and satisfyingly crunchy! I used grape molasses for a more authentic turkish flavor and my partner’s mother asked for the recipe. She was impressed with the lack of oil, as she and her husband are watching their oil intake. Thank you for developing such a tasty, healthful recipe!
Exactly, grape molasses is more common here in Turkey. Yes, it’s so easy to end up with more oil than we want to so I payed close attention to that. I’m glad you enjoyed it 🙂