Updated: Feb 15, 2020
No, this granola is not burnt. That charred look is all thanks to what I used in place of refined oil in this recipe: black sesame tahini!
If you’ve never had black sesame tahini before, it’s similar to regular tahini, but a bit nuttier and bitter which pairs well with the sweet, hot honey and caramel like deglet nour dates.
You don’t have to use honey or dates if you don’t want to though! One of the best parts of this recipe is how customizable it is depending on what you have on hand. Don’t like spice? Use regular honey instead...wimp. Vegan? Dump some maple syrup in there. Dates aren’t your thing? Replace them with cranberries or raisins. Don’t have pecans? Substitute them with any nuts or seeds you please. This granola is basically a choose your own adventure in a breakfast. All you have to make sure is that the ratio of ingredients remains the same.
If you like your granola with thiccc chunks, then you are going to need to make this immediately. Even without oil, this recipe produces the crunchiest, chunkiest granola pieces. The secret: chia seeds, cooking it at a low temperature, and NOT stirring the granola while it’s cooking. I repeat, do not stir the granola. I know it’s tempting, but the spatula down, Karen!
The chia seeds help the granola clusters to bind together while cooking. There will still be a bit of moisture when you first take it out of the oven, but it will crisp up as it cools. Once it has cooled down, break the clusters up into your desired size (and if that size is just one giant granola bar, you do you).