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 102 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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  • Comments

    1. Dawn |

      Hi there! I just tried this recipe for the first time. I had a blast making it with my 3 year old, and it smelled incredible going in the oven and while baking, however, it was burnt to a crisp when it came out. I followed your instructions completely (rolled oats version). The only difference was that I used a silicone baking mat instead of parchment paper…do you think that’s where I messed up? I would love to try again, but I don’t want to ruin another batch!

      • Amy Taylor (comment moderator) |

        Hi Dawn. It may just be that you need to adjust the temperature/cooking time down a bit. All ovens are a little different.

        • Dawn |

          Thanks so much. I tried again, and this time I baked it for 60 min at 200 degrees and it turned out perfectly!

          • Amy Taylor (comment moderator) |

            Yay! :)

    2. Cindy |

      Hi, thanks for adding me to your site. I love the idea of eating in a more healthy way and eliminating processed foods. My son has gluten allergies and I have some weight to lose and was looking where I could substitute whole wheat things for coconut flour, etc.. Which I think would work well. While I understand eating this way isn’t intended for weight loss, but is it feasible that one could eat this way and have great results in losing weight?

    3. Angela |

      I just tried this recipe using steel cut oats and subbing coconut oil for the butter. I also added chocolate chips and raisins since we have those on hand. I baked the granola at 250 for the time allowed, but nothing has stuck together. I even tried to put it back in the oven for 20-30 more minutes. It is just very loose. It’s delicious and will probably be ok as cereal but wondering if you have any suggestions on why my granola bars never formed together. Thank you!!

      • Baker |

        You have to use butter as the coconut oil is too viscous and at above room temps will turn to liquid. Ive made this recipe many times and it binds pretty well considering the agent is just butter and honey.

      • Kari |

        Yes, I read that coconut oil turns to liquid at about 76 degrees, so baking it would for sure give you that problem.

      • Isabel |

        I used butter in mine and it wouldn’t stick either. I am still going to use it as cereal, but I would also like some tips on how to make them into bars.

    4. Ayman |


      Is there any way to make this without nuts and coconut? My daughter has allergies but I would love to make this. Will it taste too bland without them? Anything else I can put in it instead?

      • Amy Taylor (comment moderator) |

        Hi. You can replace the nuts with more of various seeds such as pumpkin, sesame, flax, chia, etc. and just leave out the coconut.

    5. Andrea |

      Hi there! I want to make this granola recipe but have a kid who is allergic to nuts. Would you still at the same amount of butter if you didn’t add the nuts? Thx!

      • Amy Taylor (comment moderator) |

        Hi there. You could add more seeds and oats and keep the butter amount the same.

    6. Aura |

      Hi Lisa,

      I just made this granola and it turned out pretty good. Thank you! I added chia and hemp seeds (1/4 of each). Your recipe says it makes 3 lbs, what do you do for a serving? 1:/4 cup, 1/2 cup.

      Thank you!

      • Amy Taylor (comment moderator) |

        Hi. Anywhere between 1/4 cup to 3/4 cup, depending upon the individual, the appetite, and the meal. :)

    7. Nana Phyllis |

      Granola is baking and the house smells wonderful. This is the only granola I eat!

    8. Laura |

      My husband is dairy free and we have been using EarthBalance soy free dairy free butter substitute for a lot of things. It’s an oil blend of Palm fruit oil, canola, safflower, etc…
      Does anyone know if this type of thing would work in this recipe? I may end of trying it anyway, but I wanted to see if anyone had experience with this. Thanks in advance!

    9. Mercy |

      This is a great recipe that I am now fond of. It is very easy to make too. I was able to keep the large batch I made for two months. I just wanted to let you know that it keeps without going rancid in airtight container. for busy mums, you can make big portions to keep in the fridge without fear.

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