I first made this olive oil granola a few years ago because I was out of coconut oil but it became my standard over time, and I just switch out a few add-ins and spices depending on the time of year and what I’m doing with it. The granola is gluten-free, vegan, and needs just 8 ingredients.
It’s a really inexpensive recipe using olive oil and seeds instead of pricier ingredients like nuts, and I prefer it as an everyday snack over really nut-heavy recipes. If you want a granola recipe that calls for coconut oil, try my cinnamon hazelnut granola from last autumn, it’s excellent.
My standard spice for this naturally-sweetened maple syrup granola is sumac. It’s a citrus-like spice from the Middle East that’s not really sweet but adds a nice popcorn-like flavour to the granola. Sumac is pretty inexpensive, especially if you get it at a Middle Eastern grocer, and you can find it in several other OE recipes – this split pea spread, lentil bowl, white bean salad, and roasted cauliflower salad all use sumac.
Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
- Sumac: if you don’t have or can’t get sumac, substitute cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, or whatever spice you’d like. I’ve made this recipe with all three and I liked it every time.
- Olive oil: if your olive oil is very strong-tasting, you can use a lighter oil instead, like avocado or melted coconut oil.
- Seeds: use all sunflower seeds if preferred, or substitute in some sesame seeds. Nuts can also be used in place of some or all of the seeds.
- Chia seeds: chia is mandatory in this recipe and shouldn’t be omitted. It helps the granola to form clusters.
If you’re worried that it won’t be sweet enough because of the olive oil, well, maybe you’re right. It depends on your personal taste. If you like cloying, super-sweet granola, this is not that. This is just lightly sweet but it’s great to have with fruit as it’s not overwhelming – and the taste is fairly neutral so it goes with seasonal fruits all year round (unlike cinnamon or nutmeg).
Parchment paper makes a real difference here, as chia does want to stick to any possible surface. With parchment, the granola will slide right off and you won’t have a mess to clean up. We use our parchment paper multiple times – until it falls apart completely.
How to Store
Storage: keep in a sealed container at room temperature for up to a week, or refrigerate for up to a month.
Freezing: transfer cooled granola to an airtight container and freeze for up to three months.
- Use a spatula: the chia will stick to the sides of the mixing bowl, and a rubber spatula is the easiest way to transfer it to the baking sheet.
- Don’t stir: if you want clusters, don’t stir the granola during baking, and let it cool fully before removing it from the baking sheet.
- Check your oven temperature: this should be baked at a relatively low temperature, and if your oven runs hot, the granola might burn. A small oven thermometer is very helpful if you bake a lot (every baked recipe on OE uses double thermometers to be certain of the temperature!).
More Great Granola Recipes
Almond, Rose, and Cardamom Granola
Grain Free Granola (with coconut)
Almond Butter Granola
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Olive Oil Granola
- 250 grams rolled oats
- 80 grams sunflower seeds
- 80 grams pumpkin seeds
- 50 grams chia seeds
- 2 teaspoons sumac
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- 60 ml olive oil
- 60 ml maple syrup
- Preheat the oven to 150°C (300°F) and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl, mix the oats, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, chia, sumac, and salt. Add the olive oil and maple syrup, then use your hands or a spatula to mix until the dry ingredients are fully coated.250 grams rolled oats, 80 grams sunflower seeds, 80 grams pumpkin seeds, 50 grams chia seeds, 2 teaspoons sumac, 1/4 teaspoon sea salt, 60 ml olive oil, 60 ml maple syrup
- Transfer the granola mixture to your prepared baking sheet and wet your hands lightly to spread it into an even layer. Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until golden. The granola won't be crisp when you take it out, so just look for colour. It will crisp up as it cools.
- Place the baking sheet onto a drying rack to cool. Once the granola is completely cool, break it apart and store in a sealed container for up to a week on the counter, or a month in the refrigerator.
* For American cup measurements, please click the pink link text above the ingredient list that says ‘American’.
Nutrition is provided as a courtesy and is an estimate. If this information is important to you, please have it verified independently.
This post was first published in September 2017. It has been updated with no changes to the recipe as of January 2023.
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