When I first stumbled on this recipe, I thought the combination would be reminiscent of Nutella, which would definitely be a winner. And while it does have the hazelnut-chocolate combination, that flavor is not really the star. I think the dried cherries and the crispy, maple-y granola steal the show on this one. And coming from one major chocolate lover, that is saying something!
2 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats
1 cup roughly chopped hazelnuts
1/2 cup shredded sweetened coconut
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
4 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon hazelnut extract
1 cup dried cherries
1/2 cup chopped dark chocolate
1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with a Slipat or parchment paper. Set aside.
2. In a large bowl, combine oats, hazelnuts, coconut, cinnamon, and salt. In a small bowl, whisk together coconut oil, maple syrup, honey, vanilla, and hazelnut extract. Pour liquid mixture over dry ingredients. Stir until dry ingredients are well-coated.
3. Pour the granola mixture onto the prepared baking sheet. Spread granola into an even layer. Bake for 30 minutes or until granola is golden brown, stirring every 10 minutes. Let granola cool completely. Stir in dried cherries and dark chocolate chunks. Store in an air-tight container for up to 1 month.
Note-If you can’t find hazelnuts or don’t care for them, you can use almonds.