Recipe: Granola Bars / Cereal (the perfect substitute for all those boxed cereals)

Granola Cereal Recipe from 100 Days of Real FoodThis recipe is super yummy and so flexible! Below is our favorite cereal version, but there are many ways to tweak the recipe depending on your preferences. For the nuts you can put either all almonds or all cashews (or split them as listed below or even try a totally different type of nut). Also, the same thing works for the seeds – you can either put in all pumpkin seeds or all sesame seeds or put in half and half. You could easily play around with the amounts of sesame seeds and flaxseeds as well. If you can’t find unsweetened shredded coconut you can leave it out completely.

If you want granola cereal make it with rolled oats. If you want granola bars then substitute steel cut oats for the rolled oats, and I also like to add dried fruit bits before baking the bars. For the cereal, once it has baked and cooled completely, you want to put it in a gallon zip lock to break it up into small cereal pieces. If you are making granola bars just break off big chunks instead of using a bag. Don’t expect perfectly uniform rectangles for your granola bars – these are homemade after all!

4.8 from 97 reviews
Granola Bars / Cereal (the perfect substitute for all those boxed cereals)
Serves: makes 3 lbs
Recipe adapted from Anson Mills
  • 3½ cups rolled oats (if you want bars use steel cut oats so it will stick together better)
  • 1 cup raw sliced almonds
  • 1 cup raw cashew pieces (or walnuts or pecans)
  • 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut (I could only find unsweetened at Earth Fare, which is similar to Whole Foods)
  • ½ cup raw sunflower seeds
  • ½ cup raw pumpkin seeds
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1½ teaspoons ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon grated or ground nutmeg
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ½ cup honey
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • Also need – parchment paper
  1. Preheat the oven to 250 degrees. Cover a rectangular baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Mix the dry oats, almonds, cashews, coconut, seeds and spices together in a large mixing bowl.
  3. Heat the butter and honey together in a small saucepan over low heat. Once the butter melts stir in the vanilla and salt.
  4. Pour the hot liquids over the dry ingredients and stir together with a rubber spatula until evenly coated.
  5. Spread mixture onto prepared pan in one even layer. Bake for 75 minutes.
  6. The granola will become crisp as it cools at which point you can break into pieces (if making bars) or break it up into small chunks by pounding it in a zip lock bag (if making cereal). Store in air tight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.
We recommend organic ingredients when feasible.

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  1. Elsa |

    Can you sub coconut oil for the butter?

    • Joyce |

      Would also like to know if the butter can be subbed for coconut oil

    • Amy Taylor (comment moderator) |

      Elsa and Joyce- Yes, other readers have made that substitution.

  2. Nicole |

    My family doesn’t like coconut. What can I substitute for that?

    • Amy Taylor (comment moderator) |

      Hi there. We’ve not tried this recipe with anything other than butter and coconut oil.

  3. Kim |

    Amy – I read in a few of your responses to comments that you have added dark chocolate to your granola. Genius!! Do you mix it in before baking or after? :-)

    • Amy Taylor (comment moderator) |

      Hi Kim. Oh, I’ve played around with doing both. I like to make bars and have sometimes added the chocolate toward the end of the baking to melt it as a top layer. :)

  4. Megan |

    I made the granola a few times and played around with different variations and my daughter and I loved it so I thought I would give the bars with steel cut oats a shot. They stayed together fine by the oats are very hard and tase like they aren’t cooked all the way. It’s almost like eating mini raw popcorn kernels. The flavor is very good but eating them hurts my teeth. Did I screw something up or is that how they are suppose to come out? I know you said they are supposed to be chewy but these taste like hard uncooked steel cut oats. I thought maybe they needed to be cooked longer. Is there anything I can do to fix them?

  5. donna c |

    MAY I ASK what a good substitution is for the coconut please? Looks really good! thank you!

  6. Nana Phyllis |

    Best granola ever! I keep it in frig for a month.

  7. Emily |

    I’m making granola and it’s not getting chunky, it is still just a pile of random oats and nuts sitting on a tray and kind of damp with butter and honey. Does that happen when it cools off? or do I need to add more honey/butter mixture? I didn’t use exact measurements, i just used the nuts and seeds around my house (1/2 of each). It should come up to about 8 cups total though, which should be about the same size batch.

    • Amy Taylor (comment moderator) |

      Hi Emily. Does it look dramatically different from Lisa’s picture above. This recipe, as is, makes more of a cereal than a really chunky granola.

  8. yukti |

    Trying to determine how many cups of Granola do you end up with at the end of the recipe so I can calculate the calorific value per serving? Appreciate it.

  9. Assistant to 100 Days (Amy) |

    Hi Yukti. It should yield about 8 cups. ~Amy

  10. Amy Taylor (comment moderator) |

    Hi there. It yields about 8 cups.

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