My Recipe Box

Maple Walnut Granola with Dates

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Yields 11 to 12 cups.

Stored in an airtight container, this granola keeps well for a week (after that, it loses some crunch and the dates begin to harden).

  • Vegetable oil spray
  • 4 cups old-fashioned (not quick-cooking) rolled oats
  • 8 oz. (2 cups) walnut pieces
  • 1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup nonfat dry milk powder
  • 1/2 tsp.table salt
  • 1-1/2 cups pure maple syrup (I like Grade B)
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1 Tbs. pure vanilla extract
  • 8 to 9 oz. (2 cups) pitted dates, halved or quartered, depending on size

Position racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and heat the oven to 300°F. Spray two rimmed baking sheets with vegetable oil spray. In a large bowl, mix the oats, walnuts, whole-wheat flour, dry milk powder, and salt. In a medium bowl, combine the maple syrup, oil, and vanilla; stir well. Add the maple syrup mixture to the oats and mix to combine.

Divide the mixture between the two oiled baking sheets, distributing it in 1- to 2-inch clumps. Bake for 20 minutes and then flip the clusters with a metal spatula and switch the positions of the pans in the oven. Bake for 20 minutes, flip the granola again, and bake until the granola has a very fragrant, toasty aroma and the nuts look well toasted, about another 15 minutes. Let cool completely in the pans. Break up any large clumps. When completely cool and dry, mix in the dates.

nutrition information (per serving):
Size : per 1/2 cup serving; Calories (kcal): 250; Fat (g): 10; Fat Calories (kcal): 90; Saturated Fat (g): 1; Protein (g): 5; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 2.5; Carbohydrates (g): 38; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 6; Sodium (mg): 65; Cholesterol (mg): 0; Fiber (g): 3;

Photo: Scott Phillips

This is our favorite granola-- the crunchy clusters make it as good for snacking out of hand as other uses, and it has a strong, highly aromatic maple flavor. I do tend to vary it a little-- I always add some maple extract and ground vanilla, substitute roasted walnut oil for the canola, and and use a mix of multigrain flakes instead of all oats. My favorite version uses plain puffed brown rice and millet which make the large clusters a little lighter and less hard to bite. On the downside, this recipe is definitely expensive with all that maple, and quite prone to burning -- watch it like a hawk, especially at the end of its time.

This is one of the best granolas I have ever made...JUST DON'T BURN IT! I used a grade "B" maple syrup. It's better for cooking and has a deeper flavor. Plus, I added some dried apricots and toasted coconut.

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