Granola has played a pretty big role in my life for a long time. It's one of those things that I always have in the house, and when I'm out of it... things never seem to go quite as smoothly as I plan. Mornings I'm in need of a snack while running out the door leave me stranded with a handful of nuts. And, well, that just isn't nearly as satisfying as these big granola clusters! 

You may have previously seen my classic spiced maple granola, or my granola clusters (also sweetened with maple syrup) on the blog. Those recipes are still great standbys, but a few things have changed in our house to lead me to this new molasses-packed version.

First of all, our joyful annual spring staycation housesitting for some friends and their maple syrup operation wasn't possible with our move to Oregon... so we're sorely lacking in the endless bounty of maple syrup that trip afforded us.  (And sorely lacking in the joy of sitting in front of this raging fire while the sap boils, slowly sweetening into golden syrup perfection). 

Second, I've been trying to be a little more aware of the amount of sugar that enters my body, especially early in the morning and late at night. Molasses lowers the sugar content of this granola a bit from a maple syrup based version. Plus, it adds that rich and addictive molasses flavor I can't get enough of! While molasses is still a sugar cane based sweetener, it contains a lot more minerals and nutrients than your basic sugar, including a hefty serving of iron. This is great for those of you who are women, and anyone who doesn't eat meat regularly or often finds they're a little low on iron (all of the above are accurate for me, so this granola is a godsend!). 

The best part? This granola is basically a ginger molasses cookie you can feel good about eating for breakfast! I've added both ground ginger and fresh grated ginger to make the flavor shines through that flavorful molasses. Ginger lovers rejoice! 

Ginger Molasses Granola 

Note: To make a granola that doesn't clump at all, omit the flour and stir the granola every 15 minutes or so while baking. To make a granola that is between totally loose and big clumps, include the flour and very gently stir the granola once during the baking process. This recipe also doubles very well, for those of you who eat through granola faster than you imagine possible. 

3 cups thick rolled oats  

1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut  

1 cup nuts (almonds and walnuts are great choices!), roughly chopped 

1/4 cup flour (white or whole wheat will work) 

2 tsp ground ginger  

2 tsp cinnamon  

1/2 cup blackstrap molasses 

1/4 cup vegetable oil or melted butter  

2 Tbsp fresh ginger, finely grated  

  • Place oats, coconut, nuts, flour, ground ginger, and cinnamon in large mixing bowl and stir to combine. You want the flour and spices to distribute throughout the rest of the ingredients.
  • Add the molasses, oil, and fresh ginger then stir until everything is evenly coated in the liquids.  
  • Spread the mixture evenly on one large (or two small) baking sheets covered with parchment or a silicone baking mat. If you're shooting for the clumpiest granola, use a silicone spatula to flatten the mixture into a tightly packed layer about 1/2 inch thick. Make sure it is a similar thickness over the entire tray, not thinner at the edges, so it cooks evenly. 
  • Bake at 325 degrees for about 45 minutes, until the granola feels dry to the touch. Knowing when to take this granola out of the oven can be a little tricky, because the molasses is so dark you can't watch it browning. But you got this!  
  • Let the granola cool completely on the pan. If you're making the super clumpy version, it should come off of the pan in basically one solid piece. Break it into large chunks for snacking straight from the jar, or smaller chunks for eating with milk or yogurt.  
  • Granola will keep in an airtight container for at least two weeks.