I was at Trader Joe’s the other day and these freeze dried strawberries caught my eye. I asked myself:
“self, what does one do with freeze dried strawberries other than enjoy them in their natural state?
This was my first time making granola, and the biggest thing I took away from almost wrecking my first batch is that the granola will not be crunchy / crispy when it first comes out of the oven. As it cools, it becomes more crunchy, but straight out of the oven it is pretty soft still. Do not be tempted to leave it in the oven thinking it will come out crispier – you’ll just burn the sugar and end up with oatmeal brittle instead of granola. I made this mistake the first time, which left me with more chewy granola that crunchy granola. It’s still tasty, just not what I wanted as the texture for the final product. Heed my warnings!
Strawberry and Peach Granola
makes about 7 cups in about 45 minutes
1/3 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup honey (not from a plastic bear)
1 tbsp vanilla paste or extract
1/2 tsp sea salt
3 cups of old-fashioned rolled oats (not quick or instant)
1 cup of almonds, slivered or chopped
1 cup sunflower seeds, roasted
1.2 oz bag of freeze dried strawberries
1 cup dried white peaches, chopped
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Lightly coat a rimmed baking sheet with vegetable oil and set aside.
Combine coconut oil, brown sugar, honey, vanilla paste/extract and salt in a medium bowl. Add in oats, almonds and sunflower seeds.
Spread evenly over greased baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes, stirring half way through.
(Note: The granola won’t be crunchy/crispy ot of the oven, so resist the urge to overbake. It will crisp up as it cools.)
Cool complete on the sheet. Crumble to desired sized chunks and stir in fruit.
And if you don’t, it’ll keep in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks. Yay!