Sweet & Salty Pumpkin Spiced Granola

I love granola, and I especially love making my own. Store-bought granola is so often loaded with hidden sugars, and can be pricey. Here and there I will buy granola from the store, but am very picky about which brands I will choose. More often than not, I will make my own!

Granola made at home is great because you can customize the flavors, nuts, seeds, fruits, grains, macros, & texture, to create your ideal granola. You can also get an insanely large quantity for a very low price. This recipe makes 9 total cups of granola, and I only had to spend about $10 to buy ingredients that I didn’t already have in my pantry. 9 cups of granola is a lot…that’s about 6 bags from the store, each of which cost upwards of $6. Pretty good deal in my opinion!

Even though this recipe is very much fall, (pumpkin spice), I think it is pretty dang perfect and make it year-round. It’s slightly sweet, salty, and has amazing comforting flavors. It’s great on it’s own, with milk, or on top of Greek yogurt. It’s even Ryan-approved!

One thing I love about this recipe is the addition of roasted pumpkin seeds. They are so delicious and crunchy, salty, and have more fiber and protein than any nut. I’ve never seen a pre-made granola with pumpkin seeds, so there is no replacing this recipe.

I didn’t add dried fruit to my recipe, but dried cranberries, dried tart cherries, golden raisins, or even dates would pair perfectly with these flavors. If you do choose to add fruit (or chocolate, which Ryan recommended), be sure to add it in after the granola has been baked and fully cooled.

Ingredients

-5 cups whole oats

-1 cup pecans

-1 cup almonds

-1 cup salted roasted pumpkin seeds

-¼ cup olive oil

-1/2 cup pumpkin puree

-1/2 cup honey

-1/4 cup vanilla protein powder

-1/2 tsp salt

-1T pumpkin spice seasoning

Instructions

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine oats, pecans, almonds, and pumpkin seeds. Set aside.

  2. In a small mixing bowl, combine olive oil, pumpkin puree, honey, protein powder, salt, and pumpkin spice seasoning.

  3. Whisk until all ingredients are thoroughly combined.

  4. Pour wet mixture over the oats, and toss with two mixing spoons until all of the oats and nuts have been equally coated. This may take a few minutes.

  5. Once incorporated, place the granola mixture onto two large greased baking sheets. Spread out evenly, and then gently pack down the granola into one even layer.

  6. Bake for 30 minutes in a 325 degree oven, rotating the pan and turning the granola halfway through.

  7. Once removed from the oven and fully cooled, break into granola clusters.

Nutrition Information - makes 27 1/3 cup servings

176 calories, 10.3g fat, 17.7g carbohydrates, 5.5g protein

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