The Best Nut and Fruit Granola

Holy smokes, guys. 

Check out this granola.

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My all-time favorite place is Winslow’s Home in St. Louis.  Winslow’s is a “Modern American General Store." 

I just love everything about it. Including the bag of granola that they sell by the counter.

I think it’s the best granola I have ever had.  And I never thought I was a big granola lover, until last summer when I bought a bag of this. Then… I was done-for. I was hooked.

This is not your average granola.  It isn’t chucky, the oats are super small, it is not super sweet, only lightly toasted…not too crunchy. It has it’s own unique flavor.

Maybe that’s why I love it so much.  Plus it is loaded with seeds, dried fruits, nuts, a touch of honey and maple…  and by golly. It’s the best.

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This summer I’ve been trying to re-create it myself.

I have gone countless times to Winslow’s and talked with the employees, creeped them out, and gathered their granola-making process and the secrets to their recipe. 

I’ve burnt a few batches, made a few almost-there batches…

and then finally one day, I got it right.  

So, here is my version.

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Now, nothing beats a bag of the real thing at Winslow’s. But this is pretty darn close.

All-Natural Fruit and Nut Granola

  • 4-5 cups steal mill oats or old-fashioned rolled oats (I use Rob’s mill gluten free oats)
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • ½ cup sesame seeds
  • ½ cup pumpkin seeds
  • ½ cup sunflower seeds
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts (optional)
  • 1 cup chopped dried apricots
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • ½ cup golden raisins
  • ¼ cup honey
  • ¼ cup natural good-quality maple syrup

Directions:

- Spread the nuts out on a cookie sheet and bake at 325 degrees for about 10-15 minutes, until they are lightly toasted.  Pour them into a big mixing bowl and add the honey and maple. Stir until it is all coated.

- Add the oats to the bowl and mix until coated.  Add more honey or maple syrup if it seems too dry.  Sometimes I sprinkle in cinnnamon or a dash of vanilla extract.

- Spread on a cookie sheet and bake until golden brown.  Keep an eye on it.  After about 30 minutes stir it up and back for 15-30 minutes more. Just take it out as the edges become brown.  Mix in the dried fruits and bake for the last few minutes (or you can mix them in after the granola is done).

- Once you take it out of the oven, press down the granola on the cookie sheet and let it set there and cool. It will all harden a bit. Then break it up and store in an airtight container.

I put this granola in bags and give as gifts. 

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One day I will sell this stuff… so you better all be there to buy a bag.

Enjoy!