Easy Brown Butter Granola

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Our delicious Easy Brown Butter Granola with Pecans and Cranberries is incredibly tasty, and effortless to make. It serves as an excellent breakfast or a convenient high-energy snack. If you’re not yet acquainted with the wonders of brown butter, check out our recipe. And discover the myriad ways you can enhance flavors using this remarkable technique.

We also toss Pan Roasted Pecans into this mix, and wow it’s a one-two punch of flavor! Eaten plain, in a bowl with milk, or adorning our Easy Peach Parfait it’s a supercharged food.

  1. Rolled Oats: These are the most common type of oats used in granola recipes. They are whole oats that have been steamed and then rolled flat, resulting in a flaky texture that’s perfect for granola.

  2. Quick Oats: Also known as instant oats, these oats are rolled thinner and steamed for a longer period, making them cook more quickly than traditional rolled oats. They work well in granola recipes, although the texture may be slightly finer.

  3. Steel-Cut Oats: These oats are chopped into small pieces rather than rolled flat. While they aren’t typically used in traditional granola recipes due to their chewy texture, they can add a unique crunchiness and heartiness to homemade granola blends.

  4. Oat Bran: Oat bran consists of the outer layer of the oat grain and is high in fiber. It can be added to granola recipes to boost nutritional content and add a slightly nutty flavor.

  5. Whole Oat Groats: These are the whole, unprocessed oat grains. They are not commonly used in granola recipes due to their lengthy cooking time and chewy texture, but they can be included for a more rustic and hearty granola variation.

Each type of oatmeal offers its own unique texture and flavor profile, allowing for versatility in creating granola tailored to individual preferences.

Overhead photo of a bowl of Brown Butter Granola in a white bowl garnished with pomegranate seeds on a wooden background. Mean Green Chef

How to Make Brown Butter

  1. Melt the butter: Place the unsalted butter in a cold heavy-bottomed stainless steel skillet. Set the temp to medium-high heat. As the butter melts it will begin to foam. Swirl the pan occasionally to help ensure even cooking of the butter. 
  2. Watch for brown specs and nutty aroma: Once melted the butter will foam up a bit, then subside. Watch carefully as lightly browned specks begin to form at the bottom of the pan. Smell the butter, it should have a nutty aroma.
  3. Remove from heat and pour into a bowl to stop the butter from cooking further and perhaps burning.
Play Video

America’s Test Kitchen Easy Brown Butter

Top 10 Nuts & Dried Fruits for Granola

  1. Almonds
  2. Walnuts
  3. Pecans
  4. Cashews
  5. Hazelnuts (Filberts)
  6. Macadamia Nuts
  7. Pistachios
  8. Brazil Nuts
  9. Pine Nuts
  10. Peanuts

You can add truly whatever your heart desires! Here we add our Pan Roasted Pecans because they add an extra depth of flavor. Which compliments the brown butter. If you don’t have pecans, you can use what you have on hand, but I do suggest that you toast them up in a pan before blending into the granola.

The same goes for dried fruits, here the cranberries are a great pair with the toasted pecans. But you can use what you have on hand too!

  • Dried Cranberries
  • Raisins
  • Dried Apricots (chopped)
  • Dried Cherries
  • Dried Blueberries
  • Dried Mango (chopped)
  • Dried Pineapple (chopped)
  • Dried Figs (chopped)
  • Dried Dates (chopped)
  • Dried Apples (chopped)
Roasted Pecans

The Role of Egg Whites in Granola Making

Egg whites are often used in granola recipes for several reasons:

  1. Binding Agent: Egg whites act as a natural binder, helping to hold the ingredients together during the baking process. This results in clusters or chunks forming in the granola, which many people enjoy for added texture.

  2. Crunchiness: When whipped and incorporated into the granola mixture, egg whites can create a crispier texture as they bake, enhancing the overall crunchiness of the finished product.

  3. Nutritional Boost: Egg whites are low in fat and calories but high in protein. Adding egg whites to granola can increase its protein content, making it a more satisfying and nutritious snack or breakfast option.

  4. Uniform Coating: Egg whites can help evenly coat the other ingredients in the granola mixture, ensuring that flavors are distributed evenly throughout the batch.

  5. Reduction of Added Fats: Using egg whites can sometimes allow for a reduction in the amount of added fats (such as oil or butter) needed in the granola recipe, which can be beneficial for those looking to lower their fat intake.

Overall, incorporating egg whites into granola recipes can contribute to both the texture and nutritional profile of the final product, resulting in a delicious and satisfying snack or breakfast option.

Egg whites and cream of tarter that have been beaten to stiff white peaks for our Basic Meringue Recipe
Overhead photo of Brown Butter Granola Spread into a sheet pan and baked now cooling on a gray wooden background. Mean Green Chef

We consistently find ourselves whipping up double or even triple batches of our Brown Butter Granola with Pecans and Cranberries, only to watch it vanish faster than we can produce it. Presented here is the recipe for a double batch, but it’s effortlessly scalable for a single batch. Beware, though, it’s so irresistible that you’ll soon find yourself indulging in it straight out of the oven!

Please Pin to Make & Share!📌

How to Make Easy Brown Butter Granola

Overhead photo of a bowl of Brown Butter Granola in a white bowl garnished with pomegranate seeds on a wooden background. Mean Green Chef

Easy Brown Butter Granola

Seriously Easy Brown Butter Granola, perfect for eating plain, in a bowl with milk, or in a yogurt parfait! 
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 14 cups (approximately)
Author: Mean Green Chef

Ingredients

  • 7 cups (630 grams) old fashioned oats
  • 1 cup (180 grams) steel cut oats
  • 4 cups (500 grams) pan roasted pecans, chopped
  • 2 cups (240 grams) dried cranberries
  • 1 cup (180 grams) dark brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon, ground
  • 1 teaspoon Pink Himalayan sea salt or Kosher sea salt
  • 1/2 cup (120 grams) Brown Butter
  • 3/4 cup (255 grams) honey
  • 4 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 large egg whites, whipped till frothy

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 300°F/148°C, arrange rack so that it's the second level from the top and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. 
  • Mix the old fashioned oats, steel cut oats, pan roasted pecans, dried cranberries, dark brown sugar, cinnamon, and sea salt together in a large bowl. 
    Ingredients in a large mixing bowl for Brown Butter Granola with Pecans and Cranberries. Mean Green Chef
  • Pour in the Brown Butter, honey, pure vanilla extract, and frothy whipped egg whites. Stir until thoroughly combined and ingredients begin to stick together.  Spread out on the parchment lined baking sheet and press down with a flat wooden spatula until the mixture is even and becomes compacted. Bake for 30 minutes and then rotate the pan and bake for an additional 15-30 minutes until the granola becomes golden toasted and crispy. 
    Overhead photo of Brown Butter Granola Spread into a sheet pan and baked now cooling on a gray wooden background. Mean Green Chef
  • Remove from the oven and cool completely and then break into chunks. 
    A side photo of Brown Butter Granola piled high on wrinkled parchment paper. Mean Green Chef

Notes

  • Prep time is approximate. 
  • Store in an airtight container at room temp up to 2 weeks. 
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Creative Recipe Inspiration

Indulge in the comforting flavors of the South with our Easy Country Sausage Gravy recipe. Rich, creamy, and packed with savory sausage goodness, this classic Southern dish pairs perfectly with fluffy biscuits for a hearty and satisfying breakfast or brunch.

Savor the delightful flavors of our Ham and Cheddar Quiche. This savory dish features a flaky homemade crust filled with tender chunks of ham, creamy cheddar cheese, and a fluffy egg mixture seasoned to perfection.

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    Join the Conversation

    1. Angela, I love this recipe! I eat a lot of granola and sometimes it is hard to find a good recipe to make at home! Thank you can’t wait to try this!

      1. Hi Holly! ? You’ll love the flavor combinations in this recipe, be sure to use the brown butter and toast up your pecans (or whatever nuts you use) it will become your go-to recipe. It never lasts long in our kitchen. Thanks so much for checking it out! ?

    2. This looks really good! Brown butter is new to me. I had never heard of that before! Thanks!

      1. Hi Meagan! Brown butter is a revelation in the kitchen it adds flavor to everything from this granola to sauces, soups, eggs, baked goods and everything in between! Thanks for checking out our recipe. ?

    3. Oh my gosh. Yum! I love granola. I like putting it with some yogurt and a drizzle of honey. And sometimes blueberries or something on top!

      1. Hi Katie, 🙂 yes absolutely! We’ve added this to our Peach Parfait and it’s so darn good, thanks so much for checking out our recipe! ?

    4. Your blog posts always make me hungry! In the best ways 🙂

      1. Thank you, Jen, you made my day!! Thanks for checking out our fare! ?

    5. Can you offer a vegan version of the same granola bar? I would love to try it! Looks delicious !!!

      1. Hi Anna, no way can I recreate the magic of Brown Butter in a vegan version. However, I’m sure you’re more familiar with substitutes and can create something delicious too. The great thing about recipes is they are guidelines for formulating what you desire. Thanks so much for checking out our recipe and let me know what you come up with! ?

    6. Tricia Snow says:

      I love, love, love brown butter! This recipe would be a great transition to get kids off of commercial cereal!

      1. Hey Tricia! 🙂 It really is a magical component to upping the flavor ante in so many dishes! I know your kids will love it too ? thanks so much!

    7. Pauline Reynolds says:

      This looks amazing!!! I’ve tried making granola before and it never turns out right. Thank you for all the little tips.

      1. Hi Pauline, I really hope the tips help out. The egg whites make a HUGE difference too so be sure to give them a go next time! Thanks so much for checking out our recipe ?

    8. I love granola and butter so what’s not to love here! Thanks for sharing and the tip on egg whites was super helpful.

      1. Thanks, Leigh Ann, let me tell you Brown Butter is something special! Glad the tips were helpful, appreciate you checking out our recipe!?

    9. Dina Ferguson says:

      Hi Angela,
      Um, I’m making this! I pinned it to my recipes so I can try it. Can’t wait!
      You also have great photos. Very professional.

      1. Thank you so much, Dina, seriously made my day! Please be sure and tag us @meangreenchef or #meangreenchef when you make it! Thank you again ??️?

    10. Homemade granola is by far the best, and your recipe looks wonderful! Your photos are absolutely lovely!

      1. Hi Ramae! 🙂 Yes, we totally agree homemade granola is pretty amazing, and it’s also a cost-effective way to keep it in the kitchen. Thank you so much for the compliment on my photography and of course for stopping by to check out our recipes! ?

    11. Junell DuBois says:

      This looks and sounds amazing! I can’t wait to try the recipe!

      1. Hey Junell, I’m sure you’ll love it! Be sure and take some photos and tag us @meangreenchef or #meangreenchef Thank you! ??️?

    12. This looks super yummy. I love making granola, can’t wait to give yours a try!

      1. Thank you Sandi! If you have any questions while making it just give a shout on FB https://www.facebook.com/MeanGreenChef/ and we’ll get right back to you! Please don’t forget to tag us @meangreenchef or #meangreenchef in your recipe photos too! Thank you ??️?

    13. Rachel Newlon says:

      Your photos are beautiful! This looks so tasty! I managed to find certified gluten-free oats so I will have to try this recipe out!

      1. Hi Rachel! 🙂 Thanks ever so much for the compliments on my photography, I love shooting as much as cooking! So glad that you found an option for gluten-free oats that work for you, please let me know how this recipe turns out when using them so we can suggest them here as an option. Thank you ?

    14. Mmmm I can taste this now!! What a great idea to use egg whites. I will be making this soon! (This weekend!)

      1. Hi Brittany! 😀 You will love the Brown Butter combo with the pecans and cranberries it really rocks and the egg whites create beautiful clusters! Be sure to tag us @meangreenchef or #meangreenchef in your recipe photos! Thanks! ?

    15. I love brown butter! I love granola! This is the best of both worlds! Sounds delicious…thank you for sharing!

      1. Hi Michele! 🙂 It really is the best of both worlds, thanks so much for checking out our recipe! ?

    16. Yum! I love granola and I love pecans, so this looks delightful! Also, I’d never really thought about what steel cut meant. Thanks for the info!

      1. Hey Stacey! The pan roasted pecans really add a great depth of flavor, so glad that our little bit of food nerdery gave you some insight on steel cut oats too 🙂 thanks for stopping by and checking out the recipe ?

    17. You had me at pecans and cranberries. Looks absolutely delicious!

      1. Thanks so much, Janine!! ? ?

    18. Never would have thought that you’d use egg whites in a granola recipe. Thanks for sharing, it looks delicious!

      1. Hi Kathryn! 🙂 Right? Who knew egg whites would have such an amazing impact, they create the most amazing crunchy clusters! Thank you so much for checking out our recipe ?

    19. This looks so delicious! I would love to have this to put on my overnight oats in the morning and give them a nice texture and punch of flavor! YUM!

      1. Hi Jennifer, we’re all about upping the flavor ante in every way possible! Pecans and cranberries would be an awesome addition to overnight oats, I absolutely love them ? thanks so much for stopping by to check out our creations! ?

    20. Looks wonderful! I’m vegan so I’ll have to play with the recipe and see what I can come up with. Thanks for the inspiration!

      1. Hi Cindy, thanks so much for checking out our recipe! Please be sure to let me know how your vegan granola turns out, I would love to hear ?

    21. This may not be what I was supposed to take away from this, but I just had a lesson from Google about beurre noisette because I did not know what is brown butter. Learning new things can be a treat, so thank you for exposing me to a new-to-me food item!

      1. Hi Dawn Marie 🙂 that’s great that you learned a new technique to add to your cooking arsenal! It’s one of the best things you can take away from this recipe because you can apply it to so many dishes. It’s truly amazing! Thank you so much for letting me know!! ? ?

    22. I’m a breakfast person and I have to make this 🙂 You can definitely cook/bake 🙂 Keep it coming…

      1. Morning Jane! 🙂 Thanks so much for the high compliments 🙂 creating great food is my passion!! ? Please be sure to tag us @meangreenchef or #meangreenchef when you whip up a batch! Thank you again ??️

    23. This! This is the recipe I’ve been looking for! Can’t wait to try it! Thanks for sharing!

      1. Hi Laura, so excited to hear that if you love granola I’m sure this flavor combination will have your taste buds firing on all cylinders! Thanks so much for checking out our recipe and be sure to tag us @meangreenchef or #meangreenchef in your recipe photos! Thank you ?️?

    24. I was just talking about looking for a recipe to make my own granola the other day. Now I do not have to search. this looks and sounds wonderful. Thanks!!

      1. Hi Shirley 🙂 Great, this is flavor-packed granola for sure! Plus it’s super simple to whip up too, please don’t forget to tag us @meangreenchef or #meangreenchef to share some pics of your results! Thank you ??️?

    25. Ooo, great idea on the eggwhites. I’ve experimented with other things, but this makes sense!

      1. Hey Carmen! 🙂 The egg whites create amazing crunchy giant clusters of granola, works like a charm. Thanks so much for checking out our recipe! ?

    26. Healthy and delicious! Love the way you offer up some many choices. This is a must try! Thanks Angela!

      1. Thanks so much, Dennis! 🙂 This is such a great recipe for granola and totally versatile too, thank YOU for checking it out! ?

    27. There is something about pecans and cranberries that goes so well together! This looks delicious!

      1. Hey Kat, 🙂 absolutely they make such a great flavor combination! This granola is amazing in a bowl with some cold milk, really tasty and quick breakfast. Thanks so much for checking out our recipe!!?

    28. This looks delicious! I’ve been trying to watch what I eat after having a baby and this sounds like the perfect “treat” for me 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

      1. Hi Sarah, thanks so much for stopping in to check out our recipe! 🙂 It really is a super tasty treat and gives you a nice boost of energy too, which you may need after having a baby. Congratulations on your little one! If you would like to see a recipe featured here just let us know and we’ll make it happen. ?

    29. This looks like a flavorful breakfast!!! I love the brown butter!!

      1. Morning T.M.! 🙂 It is super flavorful, brown butter makes everything better! Thank you!?

    30. This recipe looks so delicious! I love granola!

      1. Hi Nicki! 😀 Thanks so much, the brown butter really sets off this granola recipe. ?

    31. I will definitely make this at home perfect for our hiking and road trip snacks. I love granola for breakfast and now I can make it at home. Thanks for sharing another delicious and simple recipe.

      1. Thanks so much, Jane, it’s the perfect hiking and road food snack!! Really appreciate you being a part of our kitchen 🤗

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