With molasses and cozy gingerbread spices, this gingerbread granola is a festive breakfast option for the holidays, with the bonus of being healthy! Make an extra batch or two for Christmas gifting.
Granola is like the Swiss Army knife of breakfast foods. A weird analogy? Perhaps! But seriously, you can do so many things with a simple batch of granola: put it in a bowl and pour milk over it, layer it with yogurt for a breakfast parfait, sprinkle it over apple slices topped with peanut butter, scatter it over your favorite French toast casserole or pancakes. And if you’re looking for homemade winter granola recipes, this gingerbread granola is perfect.
Gingerbread is all about the molasses and spices, and both of these elements are included in this gingerbread granola recipe. The ginger-molasses duo is combined with nuts, chia seeds, oats, and maple syrup for a crispy-crunchy breakfast option that’s healthy and cozy.
If you’re not in the holiday spirit yet, you will be after you make this recipe!
About this gingerbread granola
You should obviously make a batch of this gingerbread granola for yourself and for any upcoming brunches and breakfasts, but it also makes a fabulous homemade holiday gif. It’s the kind of thing you can give to neighbors and mail carriers and co-workers when you want to spread some holiday cheer.
What you need
- Dry ingredients: Old-fashioned rolled oats, slivered raw almonds, raw pecans, chia seeds
- Wet ingredients: Pure maple syrup, dark molasses, salted butter, unsweetened cashew butter, vanilla extract, ground cinnamon, ground ginger, ground cloves, salt
You can make this granola recipe gluten-free by using certified gluten-free oats. Oats that do not say gluten-free on the package may have been stored, transported, or processed in a facility that handles wheat.
How to make it
Prepare. Preheat your oven to 325ºF and line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
Mix the wet ingredients. Melt ½ cup of butter in a microwave-safe bowl; heat for 30 seconds at a time, stirring after each interval. Add the maple syrup, molasses, cashew butter, and vanilla extract to the bowl and whisk until the mixture is smooth, then whisk in the spices and salt.
Add the wet mixture to the dry ingredients. Combine the rolled oats, slivered almonds, chopped pecans, and chia seeds in a large bowl.
Pour the liquid ingredients into the bowl and stir to coat.
Bake. Spread the gingerbread granola onto the prepared baking sheet, packing it tightly so it forms nice clumps.
Bake for 15 minutes; rotate the sheet and bake for 15 minutes more, watching carefully during the last 5 minutes to prevent burning. (For chewier granola, you can shorten the cooking time.)
Tip: You’ll need to spread the granola onto the baking sheet in an even layer to prevent it from baking unevenly. It should be about ½ -inch thick throughout the entire pan. The edges should not be any thinner than the center or they will burn.
Cool. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and let the granola cool for 10 minutes. Break the granola into bite-size chunks and serve or store.
The flavors we most associate with gingerbread are molasses and ginger, so these two elements are essential when making a gingerbread-flavored treat. Other spices are usually included too, especially cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg.
This granola can be enjoyed like cereal with a bit of cold (or warm!) milk for a simple and festive breakfast. It can also be used to top a Greek yogurt parfait or eaten by itself as a sweet and wholesome snack, or you can sprinkle it over a bowl of ice cream for a holiday treat!
Quick oats will measure differently and provide a slightly different texture to the granola. For that classic granola texture, I recommend using old-fashioned rolled oats in this recipe, although if you’re in a pinch, you could use quick oats.
How to make this gingerbread granola your own
Here are some ideas for customizing this gingerbread granola recipe to different dietary and taste preferences.
- Make it vegan. Swap the butter for refined coconut oil or your favorite plant-based butter.
- Make it nut-free. Swap the nuts for sunflower seeds and pepitas if you want to make this granola for someone with a nut allergy.
- Switch up the nuts. You can use chopped raw almonds for more crunch, or chopped raw cashews if you prefer them. Just avoid using roasted nuts, because they’re likely to overcook in the oven.
Store gingerbread granola in an airtight container or zipper-sealed bag on the counter for up to 1 week.
More gingerbread recipes
Get the Recipe: Gingerbread Granola
- 4 cups old-fashioned rolled oats, gluten-free if needed (360 g)
- ½ cup slivered raw almonds (50 g)
- ½ cup chopped raw pecans (60 g)
- ¼ cup chia seeds (40 g)
- ½ cup pure maple syrup
- ¼ cup dark molasses
- ½ cup salted butter, melted
- ¼ cup unsweetened cashew butter (75 g)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
- ½ teaspoon ground cloves
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Preheat the oven to 325ºF and line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a small microwave-safe bowl, place ½ cup of butter and microwave on high for about 30 seconds or until the butter is melted. Add the maple syrup, molasses, cashew butter, and vanilla extract to the bowl. Whisk together until it becomes a smooth texture with no large lumps. Add the ground cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and salt. Whisk together until the spices are well incorporated. Set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, add the rolled oats, slivered almonds, chopped pecans, and chia seeds and stir together. Pour the liquid ingredients directly into the bowl with the oats, scraping the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Stir until everything is evenly coated.
- On the parchment paper lined baking sheet, spread the granola out pressing it into the parchment paper creating an even layer about ½ inch thick. It is important to make sure that the granola is spread evenly to ensure even cooking. If you press the granola thinner than ~ ½ inch, keep in mind that it may take a shorter time to cook. Avoid creating a thinner layer of granola towards the edges or the edges might get overdone.
- Place the granola in the preheated oven. Bake it for 15 minutes, then turn the baking sheet and return it to the oven to bake for about another 15 minutes. Keep an eye on it for the last 5 minutes or so to prevent it from getting overdone. The finished granola should look a toasty brown color (keep in mind that it does have molasses which contributes to a darker color) but should not be dark brown or black towards the edges.
- Once the granola is fully cooked, remove it from the oven and allow it to cool for about 10 minutes on the pan before breaking it into bite-size chunks.
- Store gingerbread granola in an airtight container or zipper-sealed bag on the counter for up to 1 week.
- Makes about 5 cups of granola. If you choose to double the recipe, use two pans so that the granola still cooks evenly.