I clipped this granola recipe from a magazine a few years ago, and if I tracked how often I make recipes the way iTunes counts how many times I play a song…this one would definitely be in my top five. Right up there with melting peanut butter and chocolate together in a little bowl and eating it with a spoon (don’t judge).
It’s the first homemade granola recipe I ever tried, and it’s the best I’ve had to date. Granola is quite simple when you think about it: oats, nuts and dried fruit glued together with some liquid ingredients, then dried out in the oven to make it crunchy. Incorporate a few different flavors, and you have a yummy and healthy snack. This granola is flavored with pumpkin puree (you know how I feel about pumpkin), pumpkin pie spice, cardamom, brown sugar and lots of vanilla. Then add in some crunchy pistachios, pecans, raisins and craisins….and I could write a sonnet about its deliciousness, but it wouldn’t be fair to all the other granolas.
It’s a cinch to make. My recommendation would be to make as much of this as you are able at one time. The recipe below doubles the original recipe, so it makes two pans. If you have the ingredients and rimmed baking sheets to make three or four pans full…you should do it. The recipe can also be made in smaller quantities, but I feel that you would regret it. When I make the double batch, it never lasts more than a week in our house. Family and friends love it too; it’s great to set out by the TV or when you’re having company when people need something to munch on.
Preheat the oven to 325, then mix brown sugar, pumpkin puree, oil and vanilla in a very big bowl. I used the last of the pumpkin puree from my garden last year for this batch. I love that pumpkin puree is the base for holding it all together; for that reason, the recipe has just a small amount of oil compared to other granola recipes, which makes it better for you.
Toss in the pumpkin pie spice, cardamom and salt and give it another stir.
Measure 6 cups of rolled oats…
And 2 cups of pistachios. I didn’t have pecans today which is sad, so I left them out. But believe me, they are very good. If you have pecans, add them now.
Pour the nuts and oats into the big bowl.
Stir until the oats are evenly coated.
Spread the granola evenly over two pans that have been lined with parchment paper. You can also use a silicon baking sheet like I did below; either way, it makes it much easier to clean your pan in the end.
Put the pans in your preheated oven for 15 minutes, then take them out and turn the granola over. Bake for another 15 minutes, then dump the golden raisins and cranberry raisins over the pans and stir to distribute once more. Return the pans to the oven for 15 more minutes, then let them cool completely.
When it’s done, you have homemade granola that is as colorful and beautiful as it is crunchy and tasty.
After I made this, my Husband the Designated Taste Tester said, “It’s bad. Don’t eat any.”
Oh, honey. I invented that game.
Pumpkin Spice Granola Recipe
Recipe by Liz Pearson for O, the Oprah Magazine
- 1½ cups pumpkin puree (canned or homemade)
- 1 cup packed brown sugar
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
- 4 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
- 2 teaspoons ground cardamom
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 6 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
- 2 cups roughly chopped pecans
- 2 cups pistachios
- 2 cups golden raisins
- 2 cups dried cranberries
Preheat the oven to 325. Line two large rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
In a large bowl, mix together the pumpkin, brown sugar, olive oil and vanilla, then stir in the spices and salt. Add the rolled oats and nuts, and stir until the oats are evenly coated.
Spread on the baking sheets and bake for 30 minutes, turning once. Take the baking sheets out of the oven and stir in the raisins and cranberries, then return to the oven for an additional 15 minutes. Let cool completely, then store in an airtight container. Makes about 12 cups.