In The New Food Lover's Companion, Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst describe granola as the contemporary name for a toasted whole grain, nut, and fruit-filled cereal which originated in Switzerland in the 19th century. That cereal was called muesli which means "mixture."
It's easy to make your own five-pound batch of homemade gluten-free granola by using "certified" gluten-free oats. Traditionally, oats are grown in fields where wheat, rye, or barley might also have been grown and oats are processed and packaged in facilities where these gluten-containing oats are also processed. As long as you use "certified" gluten-free oats in your granola, you can be sure that this lightly sweet, protein and mineral-rich cereal is free of gluten.
This large batch of gluten-free granola is delicious served as a breakfast cereal with milk or your favorite dairy-free milk substitute, adds wonderful texture and flavor sprinkled over yogurt, and makes a convenient snack for travel, hiking, biking, or camping. Be sure to store your granola in an airtight container in the refrigerator or freezer to avoid rancidity in this healthy fatty-acid-rich cereal.
- 8 cups gluten-free rolled oats
- 3 cups sunflower seeds
- 2 cups flax seeds (not ground flax meal)
- 1 cup raw sesame seeds (not toasted)
- 1 cup raw unsalted almonds (chopped)
- 1 cup raw unsalted walnuts (chopped)
- 1 cup raw unsalted pecans (chopped)
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter (or ghee, clarified butter)
- 1/2 cup sesame oil (or light olive oil)
- 3/4 cup honey
- 1/4 cup 100% maple syrup
- 1/2 cup brown cane sugar
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- Optional: 1 cup dry unsweetened fruit like raisins, apricots, etc. (if adding dried fruit decrease amount of sunflower seeds from 3 cups to 2 cups)
Heat oven to 325 F/163 C.
Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.
In a large bowl (at least 6 quarts), mix together certified gluten-free rolled oats, sunflower seeds, flax seeds, sesame seeds, almonds, walnuts, and pecans. Stir to thoroughly combine.
Place butter, oil, honey, maple syrup, brown cane sugar, cinnamon, and salt in a heavy saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Remove from heat. Whisk in vanilla extract.
Carefully pour half of the hot syrup mixture over the oat mixture in the bowl and stir to coat dry ingredients. Pour remaining syrup over oat mixture and stir again, until all dry ingredients are thoroughly coated.
Pour half of the mixture on each parchment paper-lined baking sheet and use a large spoon or spatula to evenly spread the mixture on baking sheets. Place baking sheets in heated oven.
Bake for 10 minutes. Remove baking sheets from the oven and stir ingredients. This ensures even baking. Return baking sheets to oven and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes or just until mixture starts to turn golden brown. Watch the baking time carefully to avoid burning.
Remove baking sheets from oven. For chunky gluten-free granola, stir ingredients once and allow to completely cool. For a more cereal-textured granola, stir the granola more frequently as it cools. When cool, place granola in airtight containers and store in the refrigerator.
Avoid Gluten Cross-Contamination
Always make sure your work surfaces, utensils, pans, and tools are free of gluten. Always read product labels. Manufacturers can change product formulations without notice. When in doubt, do not buy or use a product before contacting the manufacturer for verification that the product is free of gluten.