Aviva’s Kitchen: Olive Oil and Cacao Granola. Are You Kidding? I’m Serious (and so is this granola!)

Ingredients Print Recipe


cups rolled oats


cup of raw almonds, chopped or whole


cup unsweetened shredded coconut


tsp. sea salt


cup of pure maple syrup


cup of good quality extra virgin olive oil


tablespoons golden flax seeds


heaping tablespoons of raw cocoa powder


tablespoon of cinnamon


Granola, for all its popularity, is one of breakfast’s most controversial foods. I for one love the crunchy texture of the cereal's nuts and grains and find it to be the perfect breakfast on busy mornings when I have to get out of the house fast. But granola of the store-bought variety is often packed with sugar and fat, making it only slightly better than commercial breakfast cereals.

The key to unlocking the vast array of granola’s health benefits lies in choosing the right ingredients. At its best, granola is a high-fiber, nutrient filled food that not only tastes delicious but keeps you satisfied from breakfast until lunch.

Making granola at home is an excellent way to control the amount of sugar and fat it contains, and also to ensure that it is chock-full of nutritious and yummy ingredients.

I like to make a fairly standard oat mixture and then throw in whatever I have on hand. For the recipe below, I used extra virgin olive oil, which lends a fruity and rich flavor and lots of health benefits, pure maple syrup for its ‘mapley' sweetness, flax seeds for omega 3’s, almonds as a source of healthy fats and protein, and raw cocoa powder for antioxidant deliciousness. Feel free to play around with ingredients, for example substituting honey for maple syrup, adding vanilla extract, or even dried fruit such as raisins or cherries after the granola has cooled completely. Enjoy with yogurt, almond/soy or regular milk, or even by the handful as an energizing snack!

This recipe is courtesy of my daughter, Mima, the “flexible foodie.”

3 cups rolled oats
1 cup of raw almonds, chopped or whole
½ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1 tsp. sea salt
½ cup of pure maple syrup
¼ cup of good quality extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons golden flax seeds
2 heaping tablespoons of raw cocoa powder
1 tablespoon of cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 300°F.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the oats, almonds, flax seeds, coconut, and salt. Stir together until evenly blended.

In a measuring cup, whisk together your olive oil and maple syrup. Pour liquids over the dry ingredients, and stir until the mixture is evenly coated throughout. Sprinkle in your cinnamon and cocoa powder and give the mixture a final stir.

Spread your granola evenly on a large baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Bake for about 10 minutes and then give it a good stir with a spatula before cooking another ten minutes, or until it turns a nice golden brown color. When it’s ready, remove tray from the oven and cool completely before transferring to a large glass jar.

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Read or leave comments 10 Comment

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Thank you for the great recipe! I can't wait to try it for myself and my children.

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Could I use butter in place of the EVOO? this look and sounds yummy.

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Cheryl Hayes Gassen

What a delicious sounding Granola. I too love granola, in my Greek plain yougurt mostly, but occasionally I'll put it with milk (I use regular milk--no allergies), but you could certainly use rice or soy if you have a dairy allergy. I can't wait to give this a try. In fact, next payday I'm going to head over to our local health food store and stock up on all the ingredients to make this healthy high protein, high nutrient granola. Keep coming up with these gems, Mima and TY.

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Barb Bangert

Off to the kitchen to try this recipe. I make granola all the time and try to cut down on the sugars and oils. This recipe sounds perfect.

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Karen Runnels

Before you mentioned making a healthier version of granola at home, I had decided to do just that. I had not yet found a recipe I liked but yours is just what I want, all natural, healthy ingredients. Sounds yummy!! Thanks, Aviva!!

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Karen Runnels

Oops, I mean thanks, Mima! I didn't realize at the time I wrote the above that you are Aviva's nutritionist daughter. What a powerful, dynamic duo!!

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This is almost identical to my Own recipe. Try adding hemp hearts, sesame seeds, dark chocolate chips or cacao nibs instead of the powder

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greetings~ thank you for sharing this recipe. it is so close to the recipe I have been making for years now. I also use maple syrup vs. honey yet if I were you I would add the raw cacao powder after you cook it so it remains raw. I use unrefined organic coconut oil instead of the olive oil and I also add herbal powders after cooking like maca,& ashwaganda, also nice to add some dried fruit after cooking too. chia seeds, hemp seeds, sesame seeds are great too! then use organic hemp milk or homemade almond milk ...yummy. and so easy too!

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Excellent !! Best granola I have ever made !

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Yeeee, and if you add orange zest into the mix, gives a delicious aroma. I use coconut virgin oil instead of olive, is lovely. Once tried with cacao nibs, but better put them after the oven... I also add ground ginger. Much love Aviva*