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Author Notes: What could be better than crunchy sweet and healthy homemade granola?
Homemade granola that you don’t have to watch every minute to make sure that it doesn’t burn. Granola that stirs like a dream instead of spilling off of the cookie sheet while you’re trying not to burn your arms on the oven rack. That’s what, yea!! This 'slow cooker' granola doesn't just taste wonderful, it fill the whole house with that sweet, spicy cold weather smell we all rely on to get us through the winter months. The molasses caramelizing in the crock pot for hours just takes your breath away. So much so that in hour 3, I had to scoop out a small bowl full from the crock and have a taste test. YUP, it was as good as the aroma said it would be. The spicy nuts have just a hint of heat from the cayenne and round out the fruity, nutty flavors for the perfect morning..anytime healthy snack. I've been warming a little vanilla almond milk to pour over a scoop full mostly. It stands on it's own just a pinch at a time by itself though too. The cooking process reduces the burning habits common with oven baked granolas and you wont worry about spilling bits and pieces off of the cookie sheet reaching over the oven to stir the crumbles as the cook. I stirred mine in the slow cooker with a chop stick in fact. That easy! So many ingredient options as well to make this one your own family creation. To top it off, it is chock full of 'good for you' stuff like iron, B6, folic acid and potassium. What more could you ask for in a delicious snack anyway? —Canned Time
Makes 2 1/2 quarts
Spicy Molasses Candied Nuts
- 2 cups mixed nuts
- 1 cup maple syrup
- 1/2 cup blackstrap molasses
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
- 1 teaspoon coarse sea salt
Slow Cooker Granola
- 2 cups spicy molasses nuts
- 4 cups gluten-free oats
- 1/2 cup diced dates
- 1/2 cup roasted sunflower seeds
- 1/2 cup diced dried apricots
- 1/2 cup whole flax seeds
- 1/2 cup of each, mixed: walnut oil, molasses & maple syrup
- In a medium non-stick fry pan, heat nuts and maple syrup/molasses mixture to a simmer and add in 2 cups of mixed nuts ( I used pecans and peanuts). Stir constantly for about 10 minutes until a thicker syrup begins to coat each nut. When all liquid has been cooked off and a syrupy coating is on the nuts, remove from heat to let cool. Break nut candies into smaller pieces and cool completely.
- For the granola, mix together all the dry ingredients except for the candied nuts in a large mixing bowl. Combine oil, molasses and maple syrup and then pour over your mixed dry ingredients. Stir gently to combine and coat completely. The oats and fruit should be saturated with the wet. Add in additional oil if needed.
- Oil the sides of a large slow cooker ( I used a 7 quart) Line the bottom of the cooker with parchment paper and heat on high. Pour the granola into the slow cooker and spread along the bottom. The granola will be about 2-3 inches thick. Place lid on cooker and vent slightly to reduce moisture (I used a chop stick under the lid to create a 1/4 inch gap) Heat on high for 3 hours stirring occasionally. The granola will crispen after cooling. Carefully pour your cooked granola out onto a large sheet pan and spread out to one layer thick. Cool and store in a sealed container. Serve with nut milks or eat plain. Makes a great ice cream topping as well.