Try this easy recipe that lends itself to lots of variety and helps you stay energized on the trails.

I love granola. Seriously, there's nothing like the sweet, crunchy, and nutty mixture. Take a bag of it to enjoy while hiking, have a bowl of granola with milk, or combine granola, yogurt, and fresh fruit for a treat.

I have been making this granola for years, and it rarely turns out the same way. There are countless combinations you can try for a new take on this classic favorite.

Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour

Ingredients

  • 3 c. old-fashioned oats
  • 1 c. shredded coconut
  • 1 1/2 c. sliced almonds
  • 1 t. salt
  • 1/2 c. canola oil
  • 1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 1/2 c. dried fruit (raisins, dried cranberries)

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees. Spray a jelly roll baking pan (13" x 18") with nonstick spray.
  2. Mix the oats, coconut, and almonds in a large bowl. Add the salt and mix well. Pour the oil over the mixture and stir until evenly coated. Add the milk and mix well.
  3. Pour the mixture onto the pan, and spread out evenly. Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour (or until golden brown). Stir the mixture every 10-15 minutes while baking.
  4. When finished baking, add the dried fruit. Continue stirring the mixture until cooled completely. Store in an airtight container for up to a week.

Variations

Try these combinations to equal 1 1/2 cups of additions in place of the dried fruit.

  • Pina Colada: 1/2 c. dried bananas, 1/2 c. macadamia nuts, 1/2 c. dried pineapple
  • Christmastime: 1 c. dried cranberries, 1/2 c. white chocolate chips (Add the dried cranberries while the granola is still cooling. Wait until the granola is completely cooled to add the white chocolate chips.)
  • Chocolate Banana: 1 c. dried bananas, 1/2 c. chocolate chips (Add the dried bananas while the granola is still cooling. Wait until the granola is completely cooled to add the chocolate chips.
  • Fruit Basket: 1 1/2 c. mixed dried fruit

What is your favorite way to enjoy granola? Share more ideas in the comments below.