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Big Sky Bites: Coconut Granola



This crunchy treat doubles as a breakfast staple. PHOTO BY DAN COUNSELL


Rolled oats, sweetener and oil–these are the three base ingredients of granola, yet for some reason companies for years have gotten away with selling the diverse and tasty cereal relative for nearly $5 per small, one-pound bag. This recipe marks the end of all that nonsense.

Here’s why granola is great: it’s easy to make, keeps well, can be used as a standalone cereal or trail snack or a topper for yogurt, and the oats deliver impressive levels of fiber and iron, while nuts and seeds add heart-healthy unsaturated fats and protein.

In the past I’ve stuck with brown sugar and vegetable oil, but the maple syrup and olive oil combo in this recipe provides a nuttier flavor that pairs well with the coconut.


6 cups of rolled oats (not instant)

2 cups of raw pumpkin seeds

2 cups of raw sunflower seeds

2 cups of unsweetened shredded coconut

1 cup of maple syrup

3/4 cup of olive oil

1 tsp. of salt


1. Preheat oven to 300 F

2. Mix all ingredients and stir well to make sure oil and syrup evenly coat dry ingredients.

3. Spread ingredients on two cookie sheets

4. Bake until granola is toasted golden, stirring every 10-15 minutes for approximately 45 minutes


  • Add fresh or dried fruit to the granola when served – consider adding dried fruit after cooking, but it hardens the longer you store it
  • Try experimenting by adding different nuts and seeds! This is just the mix we like. 
  • You can also get creative with spices, such as pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, etc.

So, next time you sidle by the “healthy” granola-esque section of the cereal aisle (you know, the one with the Grape Nuts and sugarless Bran Flakes) to grab an extra large box of Froot Loops for no one but yourself, do so proudly and with the burning notion that you have your own healthy, homemade stash of granola in the repurposed Costco-sized Andy’s Peanut Butter jar at home – or at least that’s where I keep mine. Enjoy!

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