March 21, 2012

Chocolate Chunk Dried Cherry Granola {Naptime Entertaining}

Granola Naptime Chef

I have a great granola recipe in my book and I wanted to spruce it up a bit for an upcoming brunch gathering. With some dried cherries and awesome dark chocolate chunks on hand (my favorite secret ingredient for nearly everything!) I knew I had the perfect additions to give our favorite breakfast treat a new twist. Plus, I was fairly certain the chocolate would make it very kid-friendly.

While my daughter was at school I whipped up the simple oat mixture and popped it into the oven to bake while I worked on assembling upcoming book tour information. After it had cooled completely I stirred in the cherries and chocolate and popped into an airtight container to store until the party. I even filled an extra bag and took it to a friend in need of some comforting sweet treat. At the party I plan to serve it with milk, yogurt, or sprinkled over pancakes!

Recipe

Chocolate Chunk Dried Cherry Granola

Ingredients

1/3 cup plus 1 teaspoon vegetable oil, divided
3 cups old-fashioned oats
1 cup pecans, coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ cup pure Grade A maple syrup
¼ cup apple juice
1 cup dried cherries
1 cup dark chocolate or semisweet chocolate chunks

Instructions

1. Preheat the oven to 350F. Rub the bottom and sides of a rimmed 18 x 13 baking sheet with the 1 teaspoon of vegetable oil and set aside.

2. In a large bowl combine the oats, pecans, sea salt, and cinnamon. Whisk together the oil, vanilla, maple syrup, and apple juice. Pour over the oat mixture and stir well until everything is evenly coated.

3. Spread the oat mixture on the baking sheet and bake for about 10 minutes. Then remove the making sheet and toss the ingredients with a wooden spoon. Return the mixture to the oven and bake for 10 more minutes, or until the oats are lightly toasted and fragrant. Remove from the oven and stir in the dried cherries, then allow the mixture to cool. Once it has cooled completely stir in the chocolate chunks and store in an airtight container.

Naptime Notes

Naptime Recipe Serving ideas

This is a great sweet granola to serve over yogurt or just plain with milk. It is also awesome for a purse snack!

Naptime Stopwatch

10 minutes prep time, 20 minutes bake time

Naptime Reviews

This was a hit!