Cranberry Orange Pecan Granola

Often enough, I like to munch on whatever I can get ahold of while I work on the computer, either writing, playing games, or just scrolling through social media and keeping up with family and friends. Often time I can tend to reach for anything sweet, which is usually stuff loaded up with sugar, salt and preservatives, which usually just leaves me craving more of whatever it is, even when its gone, leaving me unfulfilled and usually still hungry. I have found a fondness for granola myself though, especially if it has dried fruits or even a few nuts mixed in. On occasion I’ll even eat a portion from a bowl with some natural or sugar free peanut butter to try and curb it.

This particular recipe brings a mix of summer, fall and winter together in a tasty mix that would likely satisfy both sweet and salty cravings easily. The original author also linked the recipe that brought forth the creativity to make this granola here, which I will be following up with as well.

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ c old-fashioned oats (or gluten-free) (Instant oats will not work for this recipe)
  • 1 ½ c rice krispies cereal
  • ¼ c orange juice
  • 1 tsp orange zest
  • ½ tbsp oil
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 egg white, lightly beaten (for a vegan option, use instead 2 additional tbs of orange juice)
  • 3 tbsp dried cranberries
  • 2 tbsp chopped pecans

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F, and lightly coat a 9” square baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the oats and rice krispies cereal. In a separate bowl, whisk together the orange juice, orange zest, oil, maple syrup, and egg white. Pour over the cereal, and stir with a spatula until evenly coated.
  3. Spread into the prepared pan, and bake at 350°F for 40-45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes, or until golden and crunchy. Cool for 5 minutes in the pan before breaking up any large clumps with your fingers. Cool to room temperature; then toss in the dried cranberries and pecans. Store in an airtight container.

Make sure you stir every 15 minutes! If you wait longer, the granola closest to the edges of the pan will brown too quickly and may acquire a burnt taste. You can also stir every 10 minutes after the first 15 minutes in the oven.

Do not forget to add the zest, as it brings out the flavor of the orange used in the granola itself.

The granola will stay crunchy is stored in an airtight container and can be kept for up to 2 weeks like this.

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