Wow, I’ve just made the best and easiest batch of granola possible. It is crunchy and aromatic. And I used my newest kitchen “gadget,” an air fryer, which I purchased around the holiday season. The air fryer was intended as a Christmas present for a relative. But when the relative stated that she already had an air fryer, I decided to keep this Christmas present for myself. Do you ever do that? Although other friends say that they “love” cooking with air fryers, I really haven’t figured out a way to make good use of my air fryer. Today I decided to give this little appliance another try and am pleased to report that I made a very successful batch of granola.
My granola is simple — just the basics are included in the recipe and only a few ingredients. The granola took only 15 minutes to cook in the air fryer and I was able to “multi-task” doing other things while the granola baked. This is a small batch because that’s all that really fits in an air-fryer. But it is easy enough to make more (which I plan to do)!
What is an Air Fryer?
As far as I’m concerned, an air fryer is a small convection oven-type appliance which sits on your kitchen counter and takes up space. It can heat from 200 to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. It has a small fan below the bottom of the cooking basket area which circulates the hot air. It really functions as a miniature convection oven and cooks foods somewhat quicker than normal.
According to the instructions, it is best if the food you are cooking is placed in a single layer in the bottom of the basket. Since the basket has a 6″ diameter, then only small quantities of food can be cooked at a time. And if you are cooking several dishes — go figure — cook them one at a time. Or if you have a large quantity of food, then cook it in several batches. What about frying? You still have to coat the surface of the food with oil to “fry” it.
However, if you are only cooking a small amount of food, then an air fryer has several advantages. It is much more efficient than heating up an oven. You can stand up while using the appliance, rather than bending over a hot oven. And this little appliance puts out the heat cooking things a little quicker than a conventional oven. I’ve had to re-think my goals for using this appliance to attain it’s full potential. Here comes homemade granola made in an air fryer.
Air Fryer Granola
For some reason, I have been craving granola. Homemade granola, in my opinion, can’t be beat. I remember homemade granola from growing up, as we made the best homemade granola anywhere around. To process was to place oatmeal, seeds, nuts, honey and other ingredients in a single layer on a baking sheet. I remember that the granola baked in the oven on a low temperature for a long time and that it needed to be stirred it from time to time. The granola smelt good while it was baking and tasted great.
I wondered if it would work to make granola using an air fryer? A small batch should fit in the air fryer basket and this could save alot of time and also avoid bending over. So, I composed just a very simple recipe containing oatmeal, brown sugar, maple syrup, oil and cinnamon for “spark.”
To make my granola, I mixed up all the ingredients in a small bowl and transferred the mixture to the air fryer basket which I had lined with parchment paper. (I used the parchment paper with holes which came with my bamboo steamer — another great kitchen appliance!)
The granola “fried” at 300 degrees for 15 minutes. I stirred the granola every 5 minutes just to make sure that things were going okay. (It s very easy to remove the basket to give things a stir.) At this point, the granola was crispy and aromatic (and not burnt) and I removed it from the air fryer. After spreading the granola on a plate to cool down, I transferred it to an airtight jar for storage. This recipe makes about 1-1/2 cups granola. Very simple. Very easy. And I might add, just as tasty as the granola I remembered from my youth.
The great part of a granola snack is all the things that you can add to make the granola even better. Ingredients without moisture such as dried cranberries, nuts, seeds and chocolate chips can be added directly to the granola jar. Other things such as fresh fruit should, of course, be added when you eat the dish you are creating.
How to use granola? Let’s get healthy. My favorite way to use granola is to sprinkle it on yogurt as a breakfast or afternoon snack (or even a light supper). Add sliced fruit — bananas, strawberries, blueberries — because this makes the most delicious granola “snack” that I can think of. Enjoy!.
And my air fryer? I’m now thinking of “small recipes” for using my air fryer. It worked perfectly for cooking two small baked potatoes. I’m sure there are plenty of other recipes out there — just need to find some that I like.
A Small Batch of Air Fryer Granola
- 1 Tbsp canola oil
- 2 Tbsp maple syrup
- 1 Tbsp brown sugar
- 1/8 tsp or dash ground cinnamon
- 1 cup old-fashioned oatmeal
- 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
Method and Steps:
- Line the bottom of a 6″ air fryer basket loosely with parchment paper.
- Place the canola oil, maple syrup, brown sugar and cinnamon in medium-sized bowl and stir vigorously to combine.
- Add old-fashioned oatmeal and pumpkin seeds and stir to combine.
- Place mixture in lined air fryer basket and spread evenly in the basket.
- Lock air fryer basket in place. Set temperature to 300 degrees F and timer to 15 minutes.
- Remove the basket every 5 minutes, stir, and replace basket.
- At 15 minutes, remove air fryer basket and pour granola onto a large plate. Spread out in a single layer. Cool to room temperature.
- Store in an air tight container and room temperature.
NOTE: Many mix-in’s can be added to this granola when it is cool such as dried cranberries, raisins, nuts, chocolate chips and white chocolate morsels. Add-in’s should be ones without much moisture. Add fresh fruit such as strawberries, bananas slices and blueberries when serving.