6 C rolled oats or grains (You can use regular or thick-cut oats. Or mix and match with raw barley and rye flakes. Or raw hulled buckwheat groats.)
1/4 to 1/2 C sesame or sunflower oil (You may omit the oil and replace it with 1/4 to 1/2 C water)
1/4 to 1/2 C liquid sweetener (Adds moisture and permeates better than dry sweeteners. Choose from honey, maple syrup, malted grain syrup such as barley malt, rice syrup, agave nectar, or sweet molasses. Or, for a taste treat, substitute 1/2 C concentrated frozen fruit juice such as apple, raspberry/cranberry blend, white grape, mango, guava)
2 to 3 t almond or vanilla extract
2 to 3 t spices (such as cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, nutmeg, cloves, cardamom, ginger)
Nuts or seeds (Optional – 1/2 to 1 C pecan pieces, almonds, hazelnuts, pumpkin seeds, walnuts, sunflower seeds. Can be added raw or toasted first)
Dried fruits, such as 1 C cranberries or cherries, raisins, dates, currants, apricots, pears, prunes
Other options: 1/2 C wheat germ and/or 1/2 C oat bran, 1/2 C unsweetened coconut
Preheat oven to 325. Oil 3 large baking sheets with rims. You can bake the granola in three batches; it still takes an hour. Combine dry ingredients (except fruit, wheat, or oat bran or coconut) in a large bowl. Combine wet ingredients (easier to combine them if they’re slightly heated first to make them runnier). Add wet to dry and mix well.
Spread mixture on a prepared tray and bake 15 minutes or so, stirring every 5 minutes. If water was added and oil was omitted, increasing time adds crispness. If you want to add dried fruit, bran, or coconut, do so after baking but while the granola is still hot. This plumps them without drying them to hard bits (as the oven does).
Store in tightly lidded container(s), unrefrigerated up to 4 weeks or refrigerated up to 2 months.