by Abbey Sanderson

Cranberry Chocolate Granola

Cranberry Chocolate Granola

This week has probably been the longest week ever. Probably something to do with the time change, but still! For some reason I really haven’t wanted to do anything, like seriously this week is the laziest I think I have been in a looonnng while. But hey I think sometimes we all need that lazy day (or week apparently in my case) to just reset! One of the weirdest things I have been experiencing with this time change though has been headaches. I don’t know why but something about the time change causes headaches for me, probably a sign that I need a stricter schedule in my life.

Rant over. On to the actual post!!

“”I smell snow”- Lorelai Gilmore.”-Abbey Sanderson (me)

^^^If you don’t get that reference idk if we can be friends! (jk jk)

Today was the first snowfall of the year (at least where I am at). I don’t know about you all but there is just something about the first snow of the year that makes me so happy. It’s like being a kid again, seeing the snow and hoping that maybe there will be enough to cause a snow day 😉 lol. Snow is the most magical thing in my book, and really makes me want to bake and cook and develop recipes galore! Because the holiday season is upon us and snow is falling I am gearing up to make holiday recipes.

One of the best things that we make around the holidays is this super addicting granola. Its a mix of sweet, salty, crunchy, chewy all the components of a truly great granola. I really love this recipe because it makes so much, like 30 servings. If you are looking for an easy gift to give to coworkers, friends or neighbors, this granola could be the answer! The best part is you can put any of your favorite add-ins to it! This granola is inspired by this recipe, however I have made several changes based on my own tastes and likings.

Warning: this does contain tree nuts so be careful if you are allergic! 

Preheat oven to 325 degrees

What you’ll need:

8 cups old fashioned oats (I added about 1/2 cup more to the 8)

1 1/2 cup wheat germ

1 cup sunflower seeds

1 cup almonds, finely chopped

1 cup pecans, finely chopped

1/2 cup walnuts, finely chopped (or more I am just not a fan of walnuts!)

1 1/2 tsp of salt

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup good maple syrup

3/4 cup honey

1 cup vegetable oil

1 Tbsp ground cinnamon

1 Tbsp vanilla extract


In a large sauce pan, mix together salt, sugar, maple syrup, honey, vegetable oil, cinnamon and vanilla until the sugar is dissolved. Heat over medium-low heat until boiling, making sure the sugar does’t burn.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl mix the first six ingredients. Once the sugar mixture is boiling, immediately remove from heat and add to the dry ingredients, mixing until combined.

On two large sheet trays lined with parchment paper (tip: spray the trays with cooking spray to make sure the parchment sticks flat), spread the oats and sugar mixture into two thin layers. Place in preheated oven for 20-30 minutes until it reaches the crisp level you like in your granola (I like my homemade granola to have a bit of chew in it so I keep it in the oven between 20 and 25 minutes generally).

Let cool before adding your cranberries, chocolate chips or whatever else! The granola will crisp up as it cools. Serve with milk, yogurt, ice cream or by itself!

Enjoy and remember to subscribe and follow me on IG at @life_needs_lemons.

XOXO Abbey