Granola is a fantastic substitution for sugar-filled, notoriously unhealthy breakfast cereals. I love how I can sneak in all kinds of extra healthy things like hemp hearts and chia seeds. Those are not typically on my kids’ favorite food lists as stand-alone ingredients. There is also the bonus of granola filling the house with the same smell as freshly baked cookies, too. That might be why it’s so easy to get even the pickiest of my kids to vibrate with excitement when they know that it’s Peanut Butter & Chocolate Chip Granola for breakfast!
When making granola, aim for it to be on the drier side as a finished product. Add your choice of plant-based milk when serving, or eat it dry and crumbly – the choice is yours. When the granola first comes out of the oven, it will be slightly browned on top and still a bit soft to the touch. As it cools, the granola should break apart into bitesize chunks that are so deliciously and satisfyingly similar to breakfast cereal.
Many granola recipes call for some type of oil (often coconut) as part of the wet ingredient mixture that holds the granola together. I prefer to leave out the oil in any recipe whenever possible, so I started experimenting with different ratios to omit the need for added oils. I found that the oils in natural peanut butter are more than enough to hold the granola together. This works especially well when using sticky, delicious maple syrup as a sweetener.
Optional Add Ins
I call this recipe Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Granola because we usually make it as a treat with the addition of chocolate chips. It’s kind of like a healthier version of a peanut butter cup breakfast cereal. Granted, it doesn’t taste at all like the processed version (and we don’t want it to!) But, it certainly satisfies that craving for the peanut butter chocolate chip combo. And it leaves out a laundry list of weird ingredients that we can’t pronounce. Bonus!
This granola is without a doubt still delicious without the chocolate chips though! For more of an everyday breakfast or snack, we definitely omit the chocolate chips and add the hemp hearts. Hemp hearts are full of protein and add a wonderfully nutty flavor. The recipe works with or without the hemp hearts and chocolate chips. It’s easily customizable to your personal preferences and can change on a dime depending on what you have in the pantry. That’s usually how I decide what we’ll be adding into a batch!
Granola is meant to be crunchy and on the dry side. That’s not to say it should be stale, but just that it should crumble and soak up the plant-based milk if you choose to add it.
Always store granola covered and preferably in a glass container. I leave mine on the counter for up to 5 days. You can also store it in the fridge. Storing in the fridge can make the granola taste stale at longer periods, so be mindful of that. Storing covered in the pantry would work as well. However, if you’re like me you might forget that it’s there after a few days. Out of sight, out of mind! That must be why my countertop clutter is a never-ending battle 🙂
More Vegan Deliciousness
So here it is, my quick and easy everyday recipe for healthy and oil-free Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Granola. If you make this recipe, let us know how it went! Comment or leave us a rating below, and check us out on Instagram for more vegan deliciousness #plantednoshery. Enjoy!
Peanut Butter & Chocolate Chip Granola
- Cookie sheet with liner (parchment or silicone)
- Mixing bowl and large mixing spoon or spatula
- 3 cups Rolled Oats Use certified GF for gluten free option 240g
- 1 cup Natural Unsalted Crunchy Peanut Butter 240g
- 1 cup Unsweetened Shredded Coconut 80g
- ½ cup Peanuts Chopped or whole 45g
- ½ cup Dairy Free Chocolate Chips 90g
- ⅓ cup Maple Syrup 115g
- ¼ cup Hemp Hearts Optional
- 1 tsp Vanilla
- ¼ tsp Sea Salt
- Preheat over to 350°F
- Melt peanut butter, maple syrup, vanilla and salt over medium heat, stirring frequently to avoid burning
- Remove from heat once smooth and well blended
- In large mixing bowl, combine oats, peanuts, hemp hearts (if using) and coconut
- Stir well to combine dry ingredients, and then add melted peanut butter mixture slowly
- Fold in peanut butter mixture until well combined
- Once wet and dry ingredients are well combined, fold in chocolate chips
- Scoop finished mixture out onto lined baking sheet
- Pack tightly in a flat even layer and bake for 20-25 minutes or until slightly browed on edges
- Allow to cool and break apart granola
- Serve immediately or store in an airtight container on your counter top for 4-5 days, or in freezer for up to a month