With lots of ginger, smoky molasses, and abundant spice, this perfectly clumpy gingerbread granola shifts breakfast into full holiday mode. It’s vegan, gluten-free, and makes an excellent edible holiday gift.
Today, I’ve got a holiday treat for your breakfast routine: gingerbread granola. This spin on everyday granola is toasted to a deep golden hue and has lots of crunch, sweetness, and spice. Candied and ground ginger lend a warming, spicy edge, while cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves do their usual (delicious) thing. As it cooks, this granola will fill your house with the aromas of the season. And once it’s cooled, you have a lovely treat that will brighten your own morning or make for a very nice edible gift.
This recipe makes about 3 quarts of granola, so it’s definitely a big batch. It goes quickly in my house of four, but if you’re cooking for one or two, you may want to halve the recipe.
Go Low and Slow for Perfectly Toasted Gingerbread Granola
There are lots of ways to make a great granola, but I prefer to go with a low and slow approach, and cook mine in a 325 degree oven. Though it takes a bit longer, the lower temperature means there’s more flexibility and it lengthens the window between toasted and burnt granola. If your oven is tricky, keep a close eye during the last 15 minutes of cook time – you may need to pull yours early or give things an extra stir.
Clump It Up
Everyone knows that the best part of granola is the yummy clumps. To get lots of clumps in yours, use a generously sized sheet of parchment to line the baking sheet and sides and once it’s out of the oven, press firmly into the pan and let it cool completely before breaking into clumps.
The amount of sugar and oil play an important role in getting your granola to the right texture, so while you can cut back on the brown sugar by as much as half, you’ll want to use the full half cup each of maple syrup (or sub honey) and olive oil.
This granola will keep well for one month at room temp and longer in the fridge. If you’re planning to give it away, simply spoon the cooled granola into jars with tight fitting lids, label it, and add a festive bow.
Subs and Swaps
Because of food allergies, I’m always nut-free, but you don’t have to be! Feel free to swap in raw nuts such as pecans, walnuts, or almonds. Just be sure your total amount of seeds and nuts is 2 1/2 cups.
I like the nutty edge of olive oil in this recipe, but you can use melted coconut oil instead.
- 3 cups old-fashioned oats
- 1 1/4 cups raw, hulled sunflower seeds
- 1 1/4 cups raw, hulled pepitas (aka pumpkin seeds)
- 1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
- ½ cup chopped candied ginger
- ½ cup brown sugar, packed
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
- ½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 ½ teaspoons fine sea salt
- ½ cup maple syrup
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons blackstrap molasses
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with enough parchment to cover the sides of the pan.
In your largest mixing bowl, combine all ingredients and stir well. Spoon onto prepared baking sheet.
Bake granola 40 - 45 minutes, stopping to stir every 15 minutes, until granola is fragrant and has a rich golden hue. During the last 15 minutes of cook time, keep a close eye – the granola should be just turning a deep golden brown, but not at all burnt. For maximum clumps, stir the granola just enough to prevent burning during the second half of cook time.
Remove granola from the oven and use a silicone spatula to firmly press it into the pan. Set aside and let it cool completely, then break apart, and spoon into a container with a tight-fitting lid.
Granola will keep for 1 month at room temperature.