Well, here’s a warm welcome to a new homemade granola recipe containing a secret Minnesota ingredient! This healthful, nutty, slightly sweet, oat-based blend offers hints of maple, honey and cinnamon with every spoonful. Share Lutsen’s Maple Granola and perhaps the adventurers around your table will be so thrilled with their breakfast, they’ll bring you flowers! ♥
Time to pull up a chair and pass the milk – or yogurt – or ice cream – to pair with this tasty granola. Toss in a few berries and while you’re munching away, let’s reveal the ingredient that inspired a new recipe:
Caribou Cream Maple Syrup is tapped and produced along the shores of Lake Superior in Lutsen. Follow the Caribou Trail heading inland from Highway 61, to discover a working farm tucked away amid a beautiful forest. Visit the Minnesota destination year-round to see where golden maple syrup magic comes to life!
These Minnesota makers know their stuff! The small shop features on-your-honor sales of award-winning Caribou Cream maple syrup, cute MN-themed signs, household decor and other do-dads, and you can’t miss the wall of honor.
You’ll spot ribbons and accolades displayed high and low hailing from a variety of foodie-type competitions. Caribou Cream is the real deal, friends, and this is simply our humble yet truthful editorial opinion. If you’re interested in learning more, check out their Facebook page and support this sweet amber gem that hails from our home state!
So, back to this granola…and those flowers… Eric and I were in Lutsen last month doing a little early autumn color chasing. Heading toward the lake from the Superior Hiking Trail’s White Sky Rock on Caribou Trail, we stopped to pick up some maple syrup. This was a first for us, we’d heard rave reviews for Caribou Cream, but had never ventured to their location.
While we typically use syrup in the traditional form, drizzled on pancakes & waffles, I was curious to try it in a homemade granola. The only catch…I’ve never made granola! I decided to lean on my husband’s go-to food guru Alton Brown and adjusted his recipe. This version is distinct in that it does not have the coconut that Alton suggests, but rather includes the syrup and I added honey, to allow for less sugar. Cinnamon also sounded like a tasty addition…
Lutsen’s Maple Granola is quite delicious and quick to make. Once the ingredients have been tossed together, spread the mixture evenly onto a baking sheet. In a low oven, bake for about an hour, and stir every 15 minutes or so.
Alton’s original recipe calls for silvered almonds and cashews. We had lightly roasted/lightly salted mixed nuts on hand, and they worked perfectly! And, since they were salted, I omitted the salt from our recipe. I’d suggest adding a quarter teaspoon of salt if you’re using unsalted nuts. Once the granola baked for just over an hour, I let it cool, stirred in the dates and placed the crunchy mixture in a stay-fresh container.
Without further adieu, here is the recipe for Lutsen’s Maple Granola. Please enjoy!
Preheat oven to 250º. In one large bowl, mix together the four dry ingredients:
- 2 cups rolled oats
- 1 cup roasted mixed nuts, lightly salted & chopped
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/8 cup brown sugar, packed
In a separate medium bowl, mix the three wet ingredients:
- 1/8 cup Caribou Cream maple syrup
- 2 teaspoons honey
- 1/8 cup canola oil
Combine the wet ingredients in to the dry, toss well to coat and spread onto a cookie sheet or baking pan.
Bake for 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes. Taste test after an hour. You may decide to let it bake an additional 10 to 15 minutes if you prefer a crunchier granola.
Remove the granola from the oven, allow to cool slightly. Toss in raisins, dates, diced dried apricots or your favorite dried fruit. We chose to add…
- 1/4 cup chopped dates and stirred to blend
If you happen to stop by Caribou Cream, let me know what you think! xo
This recipe, story and photos first appeared on From Lutsen with Love in October 2018. All reflections and images are my own.