Pumpkin Spice Granola
Published Feb 11, 2013•Updated Mar 29, 2023
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Pumpkin spice granola is made with simple pantry ingredients, and filled with toasted almonds, a touch of sweet honey, and bite-sized crunchy clusters. So easy to make, you’ll never buy granola again.
Have you ever had granola that’s so good you want to eat it by the handful? You know the kind, it has just the right amount of sweetness, saltiness, nuttiness, and crunchiness. This pumpkin spice granola recipe is exactly that kind of granola.
The crunchy granola clusters sweetened with honey, coconut flakes, and toasted almonds are so good you will want to use them as a yogurt or ice cream topper, a breakfast cereal, a packable treat for a school lunch, or just a quick on-the-go snack. Using just a few tablespoons of rich coconut oil in this recipe adds a hint of creamy coconut to the oat mixture, and helps bind everything together so you have perfectly sized, totally snackable clusters, without the oiliness of some recipes.
Adding your favorite mix-ins is easy, and allows you to create your favorite fruit, chocolate, nut, or spice flavored granola.
What Is Granola?
Granola is a classic breakfast food and snack made with a mixture of oats, nuts, fruits, spices, or seeds. The first version of this popular food was created by Dr. James Caleb Johnson at a health spa in New York in 1863. The original recipe was made only with crumbled and baked Graham flour, which is a type of coarse wheat flour. Dr. Johnson dubbed his creation ‘granula’.
It wasn’t until the 1960s that the recipe evolved to its current form, complete with oats, nuts, fruits, and other mix-ins. ‘Granula’ changed to ‘granola’, and the rest is history!
How to Make It
- Preheat the oven.
- Combine dry ingredients. Combine the oats, coconut flakes, and almonds.
- Mix liquid ingredients. In a separate small bowl, whisk the honey, coconut oil, sugar, almond extract, and salt.
- Combine the dry and liquid ingredients. Mix until small clumps form.
- Bake the granola. Spread the granola evenly on a baking sheet, and bake until light golden and fragrant, 20-22 minutes.
- Cool room to temperature.
- Rolled Oats, Quick Cook Oats – Old fashioned rolled oats create a crunchy granola, while quick cook oats provide a little softness. Using both types of oats gives this recipe the perfect balance of crunchiness and chewiness.
- Unsweetened Coconut Flakes – Unsweetened coconut flakes have a soft, almost buttery flavor, and a pleasant chewy texture. Coconut flakes are totally optional, but if you love coconut, you’ll want to add these flakes.
- Slivered Toasted Almonds – Opt for toasted almonds, rather than raw almonds. Toasted almonds have a warm nutty flavor.
- Honey – Honey is a natural sweetener, and its sticky-sweetness is perfect in this granola. If you’re out of honey, you can also use maple syrup.
- Coconut Oil – Just a touch of coconut oil is all you need to form bite-sized granola clusters.
- Light Brown Sugar – When light brown sugar is used in baked goods, it develops a molasses-like, caramel flavor.
- Almond Extract – Almond extract has a slightly sweet flavor that compliments the other granola ingredients.
- Kosher Salt – Basic pantry ingredient to bring the flavors together.
- If the coconut oil is a little too thick when you try to combine it with the other liquid ingredients, warm it briefly in the microwave to make it more pourable.
- Oven temperatures tend to vary, so keep an eye on the granola during the last few minutes of baking, and remove if it gets darker than a golden brown.
- One of the best tricks for baking granola is to spread the oat mixture evenly across the entire baking sheet. This will give you perfectly baked, golden-brown granola that isn’t too dry.
- Homemade granola makes a great gift for friends and family. Package pumpkin spice granola in a cute mason jar, attach a simple ribbon, and you’ve got an easy, thoughtful gift.
- Make nut-free granola – If you have a nut allergy, or you’re just not a fan of nuts, you can omit the almonds for a nut-free granola.
- Use some spice – Allspice, pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, and ginger add so much flavor.
- Add more mix-ins – Dried fruits like apricots, cranberries, or sour cherries will make a fruit-flavored granola.
- Make it sweet – For sweeter granola, add chocolate chips, cocoa nibs, or butterscotch chips. If you add a chocolatey mix-in, do so once the granola cools so all of that delicious chocolate doesn’t melt.
- Swap nuts – Use toasted walnuts, pecans, pumpkin seeds, or cashews. Whatever nuts you have in your pantry will work.
How to store
Store the granola in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week. You can also freeze homemade granola for up to 3 months.
The secret to making granola without burning it is to stir the granola halfway through baking. By stirring the oat mixture, you guarantee that no pieces get burned, and your granola stays nice and crunchy without getting too dry or too hard.
Granola can become dry if it doesn’t have a good binding ingredient mixed in, or if it’s cooked on a high temperature for too long. The rich coconut oil in this ginger granola recipe helps to keep the granola moist enough that it doesn’t dry out, but not so moist that it doesn’t achieve a perfectly crisp texture.
More Granola Recipes
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Pumpkin Spice Granola Recipe
- Mixing Bowls
- Half Sheet Pan
- 1 1/2 cups rolled oats
- 1/4 cup quick cook oats
- 1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes (optional)
- 1/2 cup slivered toasted almonds
- 1/4 cup honey
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil
- 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the rolled oats, quick-cook oats, coconut flakes, and almonds.
- In a separate small bowl, whisk together the honey, coconut oil (warm it briefly in the microwave if it is not pourable), light brown sugar, almond extract, and salt.
- Pour the liquids over the dry ingredients. Mix together until it comes together in small clumps.
- Spread the granola out on the parchment. Bake, stirring halfway through, until light golden and fragrant, 20-22 minutes. Watch the granola carefully in the last few minutes of baking and remove if it gets darker than a golden brown.
- Allow to cool completely at room temperature. (The granola will be soft when it comes out of the oven but will crisp as it cools.)
- Once cooled, store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.