Coconut and cherry granola

Cherry and coconut granola with Vita Coco coconut oil

This recipe for coconut and cherry granola is so good! It really is one of the best granola batches I have ever made - and I make a lot. Mornings for me just aren't the same without granola. I love it so much I even did a small business course to see if it was viable to set up a granola business (it was - but the arrival of Baby S hindered things somewhat!).

Nowadays I always make my granola free from refined sugar - it doesn't need it at all. And if you use maple syrup instead of honey it's completely vegan. This recipe is made with the delicious Vita Coco coconut oil.

Coconut oil is well known for its health benefits but it can be challenging to know what to make with it. It can be substituted for other types of oil in general cooking, or in baking in place of butter. Here I've replaced the sunflower oil I usually use in granola with coconut oil. Together with the coconut flakes it makes for a delicious, chewy granola that we just can't get enough of at the moment.

Coconut and cherry granola recipe with Vita Coco coconut oil

Ingredients
300g jumbo rolled oats
50g coconut flakes
100g nuts (almonds or pecans work best in this recipe), chopped
100g sunflower or pumpkin seeds
1 tsp ground cinnamon
100ml coconut oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
100ml honey or maple syrup
100g dried cherries

Pre-heat the oven to 120°C and cover two baking trays with greaseproof baking paper.

Place the oats, coconut flakes, chopped nuts, seeds and ground cinnamon into a large mixing bowl. 

Cherry and coconut granola

Gently heat the coconut oil in a small saucepan over a low heat. The reason for this is that it generally solidifies in the jar, but you need it to be liquid to make granola. Allow to cool a little then mix through the honey or maple syrup and vanilla extract.

Stir the oil mixture through the dry ingredients until the oats are all well coated. Spread out over the two baking trays and bake for 40 minutes, stirring halfway.

Allow to cool then add the dried cherries.

Serve with fruit and yoghurt, or as a cereal with milk if you prefer. I like to eat this with blueberries and tahini - but the rest of my family think this is weird so perhaps that's an acquired taste!

This recipe is an entry into the #Swearbyit challenge with Vita Coco. Find more great coconut oil recipes and tips on using coconut oil at www.swearbyit.com.