Top Secret Granola

Breakfast, Recipes

Top Secret Granola

I started making granola back in my university days for a healthy (and cheap, let’s face it) snack, and haven’t really stopped.  I’m proud to say that my granola has evolved since my first attempts, which had no fat and many experimental ways to sweeten the granola with varying degrees of success.  I settled into this recipe after a decade of testing terrible to mediocre batches of granola, and it’s by far the best granola I’ve had.

Top Secret Granola

For some reason, it became my ‘secret recipe’, the only one that I didn’t share.  I’m not totally sure why, perhaps I thought that one day I would package it up and turn it into a business.   Well, I decided that life is too short, and that it would make me happier to spread the love another way.

Top Secret Granola in metal scoop

Now, you can have fun with the ingredients, and I mix it up all of the time with the kinds of nuts, seeds and fruit that I add (sometimes I skip the fruit completely).  My favourites include pumpkin seeds, almonds, walnuts and pecans but you can use whatever combination your heart desires.  The fruit is usually raisins or cranberries but don’t stop there.  Dried cherries, figs, apricots and dates also taste incredible!  I use a neutral oil such as canola oil, but you can also vary this with melted coconut oil, avocado oil or perhaps some walnut oil mixed with something else?

Top Secret Granola, metal scoop

This makes a HUGE batch, but if you’re like our family and friends, you won’t have a problem finding a home for it.  I have to hide it when my brother comes over, and give it out as a gift in a nice package for Christmas every year.  I hope you love it as much as we do! xo Tori

Makes… a lot!



  • 10 c. large flake oats
  • 4 c. mixed nuts/seeds, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 400 g. flaked coconut (2 packages)
  • 1/2 c. wheat germ (optional)
  • 2 Tbsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/4 c. vegetable oil
  • 1/2 c. honey
  • 1/3 c. brown sugar
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 c. dried fruit, roughly chopped



  1. Preheat the oven to 325F and line two rimmed cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the oats, nuts, salt, coconut, wheat germ (if using) and cinnamon.
  3. In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the oil, honey, brown sugar and vanilla.
  4. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir well to combine.
  5. Divide and spread the granola equally between the prepared cookie sheets and bake for approximately 35-40 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes, until it is golden brown.  Add the dried fruit to the granola once it is removed from the oven and allow to cool completely.


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58 Comments on “Top Secret Granola”

  1. Victoria

    I absolutely love granola, and I have been on the hunt for a good recipe! How long would you say this will last if stored in an airtight container?

  2. Linda

    This looks so yummy!!! Is it very sweet? I’m thinking for people I know trying to eliminate sugar (a pre-diabetic in my family specifically looking for healthy, non-sweet snacks). Also, if I “halved” all the ingredients, would it still be good while not making so much? Thank you – love your blog – found following Jillian!

    1. Tori Wesszer

      Hi Linda! You can absolutely reduce the amount of sugar – I don’t find it very sweet and use less sugar than other recipes I’ve found, but I would simply cut back or eliminate the brown sugar. The brown sugar gives it a rich flavour, but if you are trying to cut back on the sweetness I think that is the best bet so that you don’t change the texture (you need a certain amount of ‘moisture’ which the honey helps provide). Thanks so much for the follow and let me know how it turns out! Tori

  3. Carolyn

    Random question: Where did you get the metal scoop? I have been looking for some, but can’t find them. Thank you! This granola looks so good, can’t wait to try!

  4. Andrea Agasse

    Hi Tori,
    I’m a type one diabetic. Do you think it would be ok to substitute the brown sugar with Splenda brown sugar? Or would it be better to just decrease the amount of brown sugar? To what would you decrease it to to maintain the recipe and optimal taste? Thanks.

    1. Tori Wesszer

      Hi Andrea. Thanks for your comment and question. Perhaps you can try omitting the brown sugar and see how you like it, and adjust from there. The honey may be enough sweetness for you, but you can try adding some Splenda to it if you want it sweeter. I absolutely appreciate that you want to keep the sugar content as low as possible. I haven’t tried it with Splenda but would love to hear how it goes if you do give it a whirl.

  5. Natalie

    This was my first time attempting granola so thought I would do a half batch recipe. Used some hemp seeds instead of wheat germ, otherwise followed pretty closely. Turned out wonderfully! Next time will make a full batch and do some sharing 🙂 As a fellow RD, your website and recipes are always great inspiration – thank you!

    1. Tori Wesszer

      Thanks so much Natalie! I will have to add the hemp option in as well, I’ve done that a number of times and loved it! I appreciate the feedback, especially from a fellow dietitian, means so much to me:) Thanks for the follow and feedback! Tori

  6. Jane Miska

    Oh my goodness – this is sooooo good! I want to eat this everyday. Thanks for sharing! And a huge congratulations on the safe arrival of Mini Max! Wishing you lots of love and happiness and three becomes four!

  7. Lyndsay

    I saw some comments on the use of brown sugar. When I make mine I use coconut sugar. No one notices the difference. It has a lower glycemic index which would be better for a diabetic.

  8. Emily

    I made this and love it! Thank you! I am 9 weeks post partum with my 3rd baby, who I am breastfeeding, so a healthy, wholesome, filling snack is awesome to have around. Do you happen to have the nutritional information?

  9. Laurie

    Hi Tori, I just made it tonight for my kids. I used flaxseed meal instead of the wheat germ. It turned out great.

  10. Paige McParlan

    Hi Tori, have you ever used quinoa flakes instead of the oat? Wondering how that might turn out!

  11. Lorraine

    Hi Tori. Just made this for the first time this morning. Love it. So delicious!! Lots of flavour. Thanks for sharing.

  12. Michel

    Yum!!! I just made a batch this afternoon!
    It’s delicious 🙂
    I ran out of veg oil so I just used coconut oil. For the dried fruit I used figs, apricots, and cranberries. I’ve got granola for DAYS 🙂
    Thank you Tori for all the GREAT and healthy recipes!

  13. Elisa Scordo

    Thanks for making this recipe not a secret! So great, and you’re right, it does make a big batch. I’ve used it as a hostess gift. Thanks again!

  14. Nancy

    This is such a great recipe! My house smelled so good while I was cooking it. I got distracted with a phone call and added the fruit before cooking Oops! Still turned out delicious. Thank you for sharing!

  15. Pingback: Cinnamon Spice Granola | A Seasonal Kitchen

  16. Stacey

    This recipe is insanely good!
    As the summer sadly draws to a close, I’m thinking ahead to all things pumpkin. I’m assuming pumpkin pie and other spices could be added, just not sure of the quantity. Any suggestions? Thank you in advance!

  17. Laura

    I finally got around to making this recipe and it is so delicious! Thank you for sharing it! This will definitely be a staple in our house from now on. I’ve already gifted it to family and they love it too! I love that it makes such a big batch!

  18. Becky

    Thank you for this recipe Tori!! It’s so delicious, healthy and clean eating. I also like how you can change it up with the nuts, seeds, maple syrup/honey, veg oil/coconut oil. So fun. So long purchased granola, Top Secret is where it’s at! Hopefully this will be in your and Jills cookbook too!

  19. Stephanie C

    I made your granola recipe last night, and the result is total success; we absolutely love it!! I did use coconut oil and did not use any other sugar(the honey is sweet enough for us), also cut the recipe in half.. I’m glad I did because this will last us months! Thank you Tori for sharing your recipe !!

  20. Ashley

    Hi Tori,

    I made this granola for Christmas and it was a hit! I am going to make it again this year, can I ask you what type of nuts/seeds you use in your recipe?


  21. Jen

    Hi Tori, I love your post and insta stories! I love homemade granola taste so great on Greek yogurt. I have added instead of the vanilla pure orange extract and it’s amazing. With the nuts, seeds and coconut and I usually add cramberrries for the fruit .The orange extract it just the right amount of citrus and smells amazing.

  22. Francesca

    Wondering what kind of vegetable oil you use for a recipe like this? (Tasty and healthy?). Thanks!

  23. Kealin

    I made a half batch last month and LOVED it, so last night I made the full recipe! I really like that this granola isn’t too sweet and is packed full of nutrients. Thanks so much for sharing this recipe…I’ll never buy store bought granola again!

  24. Kathleen

    Hello Tori,

    I discover recently your web site and I’m in love whit your different recipies. I want to try this one but I don’t like cinnamon. I can substitute for… (do you have and idea) or just skip spices.

    Thanks! 🙂

    1. Tori Wesszer

      Hi Kathleen,
      You can just leave it out or add a dash of nutmeg or cardamom in it’s place (I wouldn’t add the full amount of these). Thanks for following along! Tori

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