Cranberry Pumpkin Granola

September 19, 2010

I can’t remember the last time I made granola, which means it has been way to long! With an overabundance of rolled oats at the moment I decided an autumn-inspired granola would be just the thing to use them up.

After seeing a variety of granola recipes online and in cookbooks that called for about a ½ cup of oil or butter, I decided to half that and replace part of it with pumpkin puree. This was from thawed, frozen puree I’m still using up from late last winter so it had a very thin consistency.

The sweetener of choice was maple syrup which worked out great. I didn’t add any other sweetener, but the dried cranberries I used were sweetened with sugar.

Once baked and browned, this granola has a spiced, slightly sweet flavor with a nutty background from the walnuts, pecans and sunflower seeds. We’ve been eating it up as a snack, cereal and yogurt topping, and after enjoying it so much I think it may be worthy of food gift status this holiday season!

Cranberry Pumpkin Granola

¼ cup unsalted butter
¼ cup pumpkin puree
½ cup maple syrup
4 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
¼ cup roasted, unsalted sunflower seeds
2/3 cup dried cranberries
½ cup chopped nuts (I used pecans and walnuts)
½ cup unsweetened, shredded coconut
¼ tsp ground cloves
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
½ tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp finely ground sea salt

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. In a saucepan, melt together the butter, pumpkin and maple syrup. Cook on medium for 5 minutes.

In a large bowl combine the oats, sunflower seeds, cranberries, nuts and coconut. Pour in the maple syrup mixture and stir to coat all the ingredients. Add the spices and salt and stir to incorporate.

Grease two medium sized baking sheets with butter. Divide the granola on the two sheets and spread evenly in a single layer. Bake for 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes. Rotate pans on the oven rack as needed. Remove from the oven once dried and browned. Cool and store in an airtight container for up to a week. Makes about 6 cups.

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  • Joseph's Grainery Recipes September 19, 2010 at 12:57 pm

    nothing beats homemade granola! Your photos are gorgeous.

  • OysterCulture September 19, 2010 at 2:30 pm

    I love making homemade granola, it flies out of our house we eat it so fast. I cannot wait to try your version with pumpkin. I do have to say that pumpkin has me thinking of fall and I am just not ready.

  • Marianne (frenchfriestoflaxseeds) September 19, 2010 at 3:11 pm

    I too haven’t made my own granola in eons, and need to change that asap. I like the idea of using pumpkin in it. I have some in a fridge I should do something with.

  • Debinhawaii September 20, 2010 at 12:14 am

    Homemade granola is always the best. This one looks amazing. The pumpkin is a great idea! 😉

  • megan September 20, 2010 at 6:44 am

    yum, I love granola! And homemade is the best. I’m always willing to try new recipes though – I’m bookmarking yours 🙂 As soon as I find pumpkin in the store I’m trying it!

  • Andrea (Off Her Cork) September 20, 2010 at 7:20 am

    I just made granola this morning! AND I used pumpkin in. Ha! 😀 I typically use olive oil for a light fat when I make it. A light version so that you can’t really taste the flavor.

    I love granola! I have special oats that I get too just for making granola because I’m that picky. 😀

  • yellowfish September 21, 2010 at 10:49 pm

    This is a great idea- I always struggle with how to make granola lower fat, and end up using juice, which just has a lot of sugar. I’ll definitely try this next time…

  • Eliana September 23, 2010 at 8:45 am

    I would have never through of using pumpkin this way but it’s a genius idea! Thanks so much for sharing.

  • Anonymous September 23, 2010 at 6:22 pm

    that looks yummy. i’m always looking for granola recipes w/ a bit less fat/oil.

    for those of us who are not lucky enough to have frozen pumpkin in the freezer and who can’t find it in the store do you think unsweetened applesauce would work instead?

  • Lori September 24, 2010 at 5:33 am

    Thanks for all the kind comments. This was really happy with how this turned out, especially since I am pumpkin crazy at the moment. 🙂

    Anon – You could certainly try applesauce. I’ve heard of that being used before, but haven’t used it myself. Have pumpkins begun showing up in your area?

    Making pureed from fresh pumpkins is so easy, I don’t even use the canned anymore. Just take out the seeds, half it, or cut it into large pieces. Slather on some olive oil and bake it at 400 for about an hour. Scoop it out once cooled and puree with an immersion blender or fork.

  • Kathryn September 24, 2010 at 2:42 pm

    Oh my gosh, I love pumpkin ANYTHING! I’ll have to try that recipe ASAP!