Weekend Project: Holiday Granola

Pressure. Is. On.

For the Hubster, that is.

He’s in his final quarter of business school and will have his MBA completed in less than two months.

No big deal. Except that it’s a very big deal, considering he’s in the thick of his job hunt.

Interview coaching classes. Endless resume tweaks. Cover letters. Contacts. Meetings with recruiters. Mock interviews. Real interviews. Company research. Job applications… and on, and on. Oh, and there are the obligatory classes, studying and homework assignments in there too!

When did hunting for a job get so complicated? (Considering the close proximity to the upcoming election, I suppose that’s an extremely loaded question.)

You know what’s not complicated?

Homemade granola.

For some reason I have always thought that making granola would entail hours and hours of watching it bake in a low-temp oven. I was wrong. It is so incredibly easy. Bonus for me? The Hubster loves granola, so when he eats a bowl he gets to relax and enjoy his food and forget about the job hunt, for a few minutes anyway. And that’s one of the moments during the day when I get to feel like my job is complete.

This recipe is great for the upcoming holidays: a very uncomplicated home made gift idea, perhaps, or something special for the people you love most.

Holiday Granola (makes about 6 cups of granola)


4 cups rolled oats (not quick oats)

3/4 cup chopped walnuts

1/2 cup chopped or sliced almonds

1/4 cup pepitas

2 Tbsp flax seeds

1 cup pumpkin puree

1/4 cup maple syrup (add an additional 1/4 cup if you like sweeter granola)

1/4 cup brown sugar

2 Tbsp canola oil

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp nutmeg

1/8 tsp cloves

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 cup dried cranberries


In a large bowl combine the oats, all the nuts, and the flax seed. In a smaller bowl combine the remaining ingredients and mix until well incorporated.  Pour the wet mixture over the oat mixture and stir until combined. In two batches, bake granola on a parchment lined baking sheet in a 300 degree oven for 25 minutes. Stir granola and then bake for another 20 – 25 minutes, or until deeply golden. Granola may feel slightly moist, but will crisp as it cools. Add the cranberries and place granola in airtight containers once completely cooled.

The variations for this are endless. Sub any nuts you would like. Change up the spices. Use apple sauce or peanut butter instead of pumpkin puree. Use a different dried fruit, or add chocolate chips… 


  1. Yum! I do love homemade granola and this sounds wonderful! Thanks Jenn for another winner! I will try it soon!

  2. Homemade granola is the best, love this! BTW, I’m going to Italy next week for 12 days and thought of you – no Milan this trip, but so excited to see Rome! I’ll be tweeting pics :).

  3. Your granola certainly isn’t complicated. But it does look amazing! You’re inspiring me to make a batch for the coming week. Thanks:)

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