Homemade Chunky Vanilla Almond Granola

The easy granola recipe you’ll make over and over. Made from pantry ingredients, Homemade Chunky Vanilla Almond Granola is the granola your yogurt is craving.

bowls of granola with a spoon on a gray background and blue and white dish towel

Some of the best homemade granola I ever had was in Switzerland. And it was a looong time ago at a little boutique hotel where a European continental breakfast was included.

Oh—and some of the best made beds I ever slept in loaded with soft, pillowy duvets. Sigh.

Anyway, back to the granola.

To have a whole buffet of things to pair with yogurt seemed like breakfast heaven to a girl who looked forward to Life cereal every morning. Don’t get me wrong…Life cereal is …life. And this homemade chunky vanilla granola loaded with dried fruits, cinnamon, chocolate and coconut would be right at home on that Swiss spread.

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Why homemade granola is better

baking sheet of coconut covered baked granola next to a white bowl of coconut on a gray background and blue and white towel

There is no comparison between store-bought granola and homemade.

  • Fast. How does less than 40 minutes sound? By the time you find the car keys and drive to the store, your homemade granola would be coming out of the oven. If math isn’t your thing (and we’d agree on that), this quick granola can be.
  • Versatile. It’s the perfect granola because you choose what’s going in it! Dontchya just love a little granola control?

Come closer my friend because I’m about to share the secret to great granola…

The perfect granola ratio

white mixing bowl with granola ingredients and wooden spoon pouring on to baking sheet

For the best granola, the balance between wet and dry ingredients is crucial to get the right amount of crispiness without being oily or too dry.

The magic ratio is:

Six parts dry ingredients to 1 part wet ingredients.

It’s a tried and true granola ratio that I’ve relied on without fail.

How to make homemade granola

overhead shot of bowls with oats, almonds, cherries, chocolate chips, syrup and vanilla

For this recipe, you are going to need:

6 parts of dry ingredients like:

  • oats 
  • chocolate chips
  • nuts (almonds, walnuts, pecans, hazelnuts)
  • coconut
  • seeds (flax, chia, etc.)
  • dried fruits (cherries, apricots, blueberries, cranberries, etc.)
  • spices like cinnamon
  • cocoa powder

-with-

1 part wet ingredients:

  • Fat: Coconut oil (or any kind of oil you like)
  • Sweetener: maple syrup (see below)
  • Flavoring: vanilla (or almond, or your fav extract!)

Thanks to this ratio, you’ll be the master of small-batch granola in no time!

Granola without honey

white mixing bowl with granola ingredients and hand pouring maple syrup into bowl

You might notice that I didn’t mention honey. That’s because this granola recipe is honey-free. 

And don’t get me wrong – I ♥️ honey. It’s something I recommend for you to always have on hand in my Pantry Basics checklist. Honey just isn’t something in this granola because it’s definitely on the stickier and sweeter side and it’s not necessary to make the granola clusters that you’ll dig in this recipe.

sheet pan of granola with a wooden spoon

Chunky Granola Clusters

The best part about this granola are these big hunks of chunky love. The dried cherries and chocolate chips mingle with the almonds and coconut to make these crunchy bites that contrast with creamy yogurt so well. And adding some fresh berries to the whole shebang catapults this easy granola recipe to the next level.

baking sheet of coconut covered baked granola and a spatula removing a section

Tips for making big granola chunks

  • DON’T STIR WHILE BAKING. Trust me – this is the key to big clusters of granola.
  • Use parchment paper to line your sheet pan.
  • After spreading out your oatmeal mixture on the pan, use your hands to create little mounds of granola. These will become the big clusters. 
  • Packing the granola together into a tight slab also works well that you’ll then break up after baking.
  • During the last five minutes of the granola baking time, sprinkle the coconut on top so that it gets all nice and toasty.
  • Let the whole thing cool before sliding off the parchment into big beautiful chunks.

Now take a big ole bowl of granola (made your way, of course) and head out into your backyard. Pretend you’re looking at the Swiss Alps. You’re welcome.

Made this recipe?

I’d love it if you’d share your review and leave a star rating and comment!


white bowl with vanilla granola on a blue and white towel with bowl and plates in background.
5 from 6 votes

Chunky Vanilla Granola

An easy homemade granola to pair with fresh fruit and your favorite yogurt.
Prep Time:5 minutes
Cook Time:35 minutes
Total Time:40 minutes

Ingredients
 

  • 3 cups old-fashioned, rolled oats, not instant
  • 1 cup dried cherries
  • 1 cup semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips
  • ½ cup; slivered almonds, or sliced
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ½ cup real maple syrup
  • ½ cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup coconut, sweetened or unsweetened as desired

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 300°.
  • Line a large sheet pan with parchment paper and set aside.
  • Combine all the dried ingredients (except the coconut) together in a large bowl. Toss well to incorporate the cinnamon throughout.
  • Mix wet ingredients in a measuring cup and pour over the dry ingredients.
  • Toss well making sure to get all the way to the bottom of the bowl. Spread granola onto prepared baking sheet.
  • Bake until golden in preheated oven for 25-30 minutes and once the timer goes off, sprinkle the coconut over the granola. Bake for 5 minutes more.
  • DO NOT STIR DURING BAKING. This is how you get the chunks.
  • Cool completely before breaking up into chunks.
  • Store in a well-sealed contatiner for up to 2 weeks.

Notes

Substitutions
  • Use the ratio as a guide for adding or substituting your favorite ingredients.
Storing:
  • Store in airtight container
  • Can be made ahead for up to 2 weeks.
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Author: Lori Murphy
Did you make this recipe? Tag @josieandnina or tag #josieandnina!

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6 Comments

  1. This granola is fabulous! I made it for company this weekend and they have now subscribed to Josie+Nina! Love the chunks, flavor, and crispiness! The big strips of coconut are the “icing” on the granola! Yum, yum!,

  2. I have been experimenting with my granola for a while now. Trying to find the perfect tasty, crunchy, healthy, clumpy blend. I was missing the clumpy! Thanks Lori! No more mixing while baking. Also used your preclump method. Granola perfection!
    Merry Christmas!!5 stars

    1. Merry Christmas Noreen! Yes – ALL about the clumps in our house. Definitely the more you mix, the less clumps. I like not having to babysit the granola too. So happy you’re enjoying the recipe – thank you for trying it!!🎄