It’s crunch time. The semester is winding down and the projects are piling up: 21 days of class, 4 tests, 1 counseling session, 3 papers, 1 monstrous thesis and presentation. And then a few quizzes and assignments scattered in between. So what can make this crunch time a little more bearable? How about a deliciously crunchy granola? Now we’re talking.
These past few months have been crazy with work and school, leaving very little time for baking. But what’s great about granola is that it’s simple, fast, and perfectly satisfying for a sweet tooth. After a long day of school and work, I’ll trudge home at 10:00 pm, famished and completely exhausted. I have absolutely no energy to whip up something creative, I’m just looking for something easy and tasty. Well, with this gem of a granola, all I need is a bowl, a spoon, and a dollop of vanilla yogurt. Mmm, perfection.
This granola is just like your favorite oatmeal cookie: plump raisins mixed with cinnamon-flavored oats, sweetened with some honey and just a hint of vanilla and almond. If you want that comforting flavor without an entire batch of cookies to find a home for, this is your recipe! In less than 30 minutes you have the solution to late night munchies and quick breakfasts. And unlike cookies that you either have to eat, give away, or somehow squeeze into your freezer, granola stores beautifully for several weeks in nothing more elaborate than a Tupperware or glass container.
Oatmeal cookies have plenty of variations, so adapt this granola to match your favorite recipe: dress it up with coconut shavings, pecans, or I’ve even tried toasted quinoa. Or just keep it simple and classic. Any way you have it, I wish you a very happy (granola) crunch time!
Oatmeal Cookie Granola
4 cups gluten-free rolled oats
3 teaspoons cinnamon
2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
¼ cup brown sugar
⅓ cup canola oil
¼ cup honey
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
½ teaspoon almond extract
½ cup raisins
Preheat oven to 300°F and lightly spray a 9×13″ baking pan with cooking spray.
In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together oats, cinnamon, granulated sugar, and salt. Set aside.
In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine brown sugar, oil, and honey. Once mixture is rapidly simmering, remove from heat and whisk in vanilla and almond extract. Pour hot liquid over oats, mixing until oats are evenly coated.
Spread oats in an even layer in prepared baking pan and bake for 25-30 minutes, stirring every every 10 minutes to ensure even toasting. In the last 5 minutes or so of baking, stir in raisins (doing this will produce a plumper, softer raisin like those in the cookies you love). When granola is golden brown, remove from oven and set aside to cool completely.