Macadamia Maple Granola Recipe

Macadamia Maple Granola

When I was little, I had long and exclusive relationships with my breakfast menus. For years on end a particular food item was all I would have in the morning, until suddenly and without warning, a new monomania came to replace it.

The earliest phase I remember involved pain de mie (white sandwich bread) and Nutella. Two slices of bread would be toasted until lightly golden (if it got too brown I had to find someone who would eat it, and start again), both slices were spread with hazelnut-chocolate-and-trans-fat paste, and assembled into a sandwich. The crusts would then be sliced off, and the sandwich cut into two neat rectangles. I often had trouble finishing the thing (I might stress here that both slices had been spread with Nutella) and I usually took the leftovers back to my room and put them somewhere safe — on the corner of a bookshelf or inside my little sloping top desk — in case I wanted a snack later. Usually, this just went stale until someone found it and tossed it, though I’m not sure who.

Then there was the pain d’épice phase, two slices of store-bought honey spice cake, from which I also removed the crust because it was a bit gummy and a bit bitter. Years later came the quatre-quart breton phase, for which countless loaves of pound cake from Brittany were purchased. I would precut the long loaves into slices beforehand and store them in a tin box for a few days, because I liked the cake better when it had had time to dry out just a bit.

But the phase that lasted the longest was the chocolate granola obsession. My granola of choice was called cruesli au chocolat, and I had it with the thin yogurts in glass tubs with bright red screw-top lids that my mother made in her yaourtière — or yaourtières I should say, since she had to buy a second one when the first one died of overexertion.

I would bring the box with me to the breakfast table, and carefully study the little Quaker characters pictured on it — I had no idea then what a Quaker was and the outfit was very intriguing — as I munched gleefully on the crunchy clusters and the chocolate spangles (new boxes had to have the inside bag flipped upside down, otherwise all the chocolate was at the bottom and that wasn’t right). This particular type of granola still exists, but whether it is their recipe or my taste buds that have changed — probably both — it isn’t nearly as blissful.

I am now a much more eclectic breakfaster (although I draw the line of eclecticism at cold leftovers from the night before) and will choose the menu according to my mood and my appetite, but I still have an intense fondness for granola. And since I am often sorely disappointed by boxed ones (bland, completely crushed inside, or over-processed), the day I discovered how easy it is to make your own came as quite an epiphany. I like to experiment with different ingredients — nuts, grains, sweeteners, and flavorings — depending on what I have on hand, but this one is a favorite, sprinkled on yogurt or fruit compote or both, as in the Creamy Mango Ricotta recipe featured in my Chocolate & Zucchini cookbook.

Macadamia Maple Granola

Macadamia Maple Granola

– 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
– 4 tablespoons maple syrup
– 200 grams (2 cups) old-fashioned rolled oats (or a mix of several rolled grains, such as oat, barley, wheat, and kamut)
– 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
– 125 grams (1 cup) macadamia nuts, roughly chopped
– 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly grated lime zest

Combine the butter and maple syrup in a small saucepan, and set over medium heat until the butter is just melted. Remove from heat.

Preheat the oven to 150°C (300°F) and line a rimmed cookie sheet with parchment paper.

Combine the oats, salt, nuts, and lime zest in a medium mixing-bowl. Pour in the butter mixture, and stir to combine. Spread onto the prepared cookie sheet, and slip into the oven for 25 minutes, or until golden, stirring the mixture every 10 minutes as it bakes.

Remove from the oven and let cool on the sheet; the granola will crisp up as it cools. Keep in an airtight container, at room temperature or in the fridge.

Cooking/baking time: 25 min

  • Oh, that’s so yummy!

  • Comme je te comprends! Depuis toute petite j’enchaine aussi les périodes “petit déjeuner au menu immuable” (pour un temps!)! Ton macadamia maple granola est très tentant! Qui sait? peut être ma prochaine phase! ;)

  • Claire

    You’re so right about breakfast monomania. I’d forgotten how I’d do the same thing myself when younger (although I was never allowed Nutella or anything with sugar in it, so my choices were severely limited!)

    Now, I can make up for lost time… I have a wonderfully indulgent recipe for chocolate granola, made with cocoa, from the Green & Black’s chocolate cookbook. Just the thing to start the day on the right note!

  • I miss the American brand of granola I used to eat in the States. I’m not too fond of any ceral in Europe and the milk tastes funny to me. I am now inspired to try making my own granola. I remember it having many more ingredients years ago back in the States.

  • Hi, I know exactly how you feel, right now im happily stuck in a maple and honey muesli with yoghurt stage.

  • This recipe looks simple and delicious, I love homemade granola. I often find supermarket (and even health food store) brands to be too cloyingly sweet and have experimented off and on with making my own versions. One thing I especially like is little bits of chopped up dried fruit (like unsulphered apricots and raisins), especially in the winter or early spring when good fresh fruit is hard to come by–they reduce the amount of sweetener needed as well. I will keep this recipe in my box! Check out another scrumptious-looking granola recipe on the Cream Puffs in Venice blog ( Luscious Clotilde!

  • Wow ! The lime touch must be deliiiiiiiiicious !!

  • pastilla

    maple anything = good

  • iamchanelle

    i am intrigued! lime and macadamias all together!

    i have always had a love for coconut, almonds and chocolate chips in my granola – and homemade is surely the way to go here! :)

  • Food bloggers must have been communicating telepathically this week. Check out my post–

    Creampuffs in Venice also wrote about granola, maybe a day or two earlier. Yours looks yummy, I really love the maple flavor.

  • Phoebe

    This sounds like very delicious granola! Sometimes I make granola from an Ina Garten recipe that includes coconut, almonds, cashews, and chopped-up dried figs and apricots and dates. It’s the yummiest. For a treat, sometimes I’ve mixed granola with yogurt and a few spoonfuls of jam. About how much of the granola do you usually add to your yogurt?

  • What a great post, I love hearing about your breakfast phases. I am sure everyone can relate. Nothing like home-made granola, sounds delicious.


  • Yes, we all stare at the breakfast boxes, don’t we? I still remember sitting at the table with a box of cereal, intently reading the recommended daily allowances as if some other worldly force compelled me. The best were the ones with games on the back. Now, that’s smart packaging!

  • I love granola!! I ve tried pretty much every brand here in the US, from quakers to hemp granola… and the best one I’ve found so far is barenaked, it’s expensive but really worth it with less sugar and more nuts than other brands. but now that you posted a recipe to make your own granola, I think the best granola will probably come out of my oven…
    thank you Clotilde: you never ran out of ideas!!!

  • It is raining here, and reading your post made me think about breakfast and comfort food, and I cannot wait to make this granola!

    I didn’t discover Nutella until I was an adult. Wow, I would have eaten truckloads as a kid.

  • flo

    hey Clotilde,

    Your recipe came right on time since I finished a sad muesli box this morning and I was thinking how stupid I had been not to bring a nice granola from my trip to NY!
    Now thanks to you, it’s ready for tomorrow – I had to run to the organic shop in the meantime. I have tried it and it is so delicious I could hardly stop myself! Can’t wait for tomorrow’s breakfast!

  • 3LC

    OK, I’m curious. Are Macadamias grown in France?? I know they are grown in hawaii and australia. and when I go to the States (or to Australia or anyone visits from either place) i bring back 1kg of macadamias. the australians really like to make cakes with macadamia and rum and vanilla or macadamia and lime (I have a macadamia + lime cake recipe). In Italy they don’t have them, and I have to jealously guard mine, dosing them out bit by bit for cakes and cookies (white chocolate macademia)…

  • If I’m not mistaken — not too long ago, I saw a version of the Special K breakfast cereal with chocolate bits! And this was in a grocery store in Paris! Quelle bonne idee!! I haven’t tasted it and it may not be at all good, but I think the idea of the Special K/chocolate combo is simply grand.

  • I love homemade granola-so easy and so good. My daughter begs me to buy Nutella-but since I am a trans fat fighter-I buy it once a year-which does not go over very well.Being a motha is so hard-ha.

  • Les macadamias,j’en raffole. Ça me rappelle des séjours en Australie.

  • Monica

    Very nice! I have some cookbook granola recipes, but they all seem to make far more than I want. They’re hard to halve, since they have ingredient lists a mile long — a quarter cup of this, half a teaspoon of that, till you end up with 8 cups of granola that you’ll get tired of halfway through.

    So I tried this. I had a handful of unsweetened shredded coconut that I had no plans for, so I threw it into the bowl, too. It goes nicely with the macadamia and lime. Thank you for the idea!

    — Monica in El Paso

  • This post was so inspirational I went right ahead and made it!
    It’s so good that I keep snacking on it, and I’m not sure that it will make it to the morning!
    I also make Nigella Lawson’s granola recipe from Feast – somewhat more complicated than yours, but very good.

  • What an easy recipe! I love it, will try it soon.

    I do love the cruesli in France. The breakfast cereal there just seems better than at home, and it’s all made by the same companies!

    Thanks for the recipe.

  • Hallie

    Funny to read about your monomania, I had it with lunch. When I was a child, I would only eat peanut butter and bread sandwiches. Nothing else. Forunately it was a passing phase.

    As for all of the mentions of nutella and trans-fats, there are some pretty good alternatives out there. Green and Black make a nice Chocolate Hazelnut Spread. Great with peanut butter and bread!

  • Beryl

    Elle: If you live in the U.S. near a Trader Joe’s, you’ll be thrilled to hear that they make a chocolate hazelnut spread without trans fats. (Uses oils, not shortening.) And it’s delicious! There’s a (rapidly vanishing) jar in my pantry right now.

  • Speaking of Trader Joe’s, in the fall they sell the most delicious pumpkin granola, spiced with cardamom.

  • georgia

    I can see great variations of this timely recipe.
    Erin, you say ‘keep in airtight container’- can I ask a silly question- how long would it keep?
    Thank you

  • georgia

    Oh this is so embarassing!
    I am sorry Clotilde ( I called you Erin). And no offence to you Erin, I was meaning Clotilde.
    (it’s funny but when I first starting reading C&Z I thought it was Erins!)
    Please forgive me…

  • Thanks for all the comments and recipe suggestions!

    Phoebe – I add about two tablespoons of granola to my half-cup yogurt (and sometimes add a little more before the end), but it’s really a matter of personal preference and appetite!

    3LC – I don’t think we grow macadamia nuts in France, the climate is not quite tropical enough! I think the French were introduced to macadamia nuts through the popular Haagen-Dazs ice-cream flavor. The nuts I have (bought from G.Detou, a baking supplies store in the 2nd arrondissement) are imported, though I’m not sure where from. They cost an arm and a leg, but they’re a lovely treat.

    Marilyn – Yes, the chocolate Special K often makes appearances on my breakfast table! I mentioned it in my Grocery Store Staples post a few weeks ago.

    Georgia – It probably keeps for about a week, but it depends on the heat and humidity. And it will keep longer in the fridge.

  • Erin

    No offence taken! In fact I take it as a compliment.

  • Jen W.

    I am eating a bowl of this granola as I type this comment. I made mine with almonds instead of macadamia nuts. Yum!

    I’ve made granola before, but it’s been a bit of a project. So many ingredients, and the batch is often too big, so we get sick of eating it before it’s all gone. Maple syrup and lime zest, so simple and good. And, since she helped me make it, my daughter has finally agreed to eat something other than a waffle for breakfast, her current monomania. Thank you!

  • holycow, yum! the lime w/ maple and salt. yp I’ll be making this one :)

  • Just yesterday I made a macadamia and lime cake (from Bill Grangers recipe) so I have all the ingredients for the granola to hand. Serendipity! I will try it tomorrow as I’m still getting over my crazed sugar high caused by the lime icing I made.
    Maple syrup will be approached with caution…

  • Maggie

    When I lived in Paris, I always ate a Quaker granola that was full of dried fruit. They had one of orchard fruits and one of summer fruits, I think. And when I came back to the states, I thought, oh, it’s Quaker, I’ll find it. Nope! It doesn’t exist here. That and Yoplait without gelatin! Why do they put gelatin in it here and not there? It tastes completely different in France. Plus, they make a pear flavor. Mmmmmmmmm. Two more reasons I have to move back to Paris someday. Know anybody who needs a pastry chef?

  • debbie

    Hi Clotilde,

    Pecans are also incredibly good in granola or just in general with maple syrup, if you can find them and they’re not too extravagantly priced.

    On the cheapskate’s yaourtiere front, I’ve had good success with a regular pyrex mixing bowl (~2.5 L) and a microwave oven to heat milk fortified with nonfat dry milk (whizzed to fine dust in a food processor to get out the lumps before adding to the milk). The NFD adds protein and calcium and makes the yogurt more solid/substantial (I use skim milk, yes, I know…), but surprisingly doesn’t leave that stale taste–I think the acid from the culture overcomes it. The microwave doubles as a good place to incubate overnight because it insulates so well against heat loss.

  • My sister directed me to this blog (“If you want to be inspired by a well-designed food blog…”), and she was right. It’s great to see recipes that will impress your friends and yourself made so simple…
    –>I’m working on “Around the World in 80 Meals” in which I’m having “typical” meals with people from eighty different cultures. French was: “Blanquette de Veau”! (

  • I’ve never made my own Granola, but for years Granola was the only cereal I was willing to it (and still is my favorite). I grew up not being allowed to have chocolate or anything too sweet for breakfast and never really developed a taste for it. My current favorite granola is the hemp one sold at Trader Joe’s, but this, with maple syrup instead of sugar, sounds fantastic.

  • Hello Clotilde,

    On the subject of breakfast, for the past week I’ve been eating a lovely cake I made by combining two of your recipes; your yogurt cake, and your recent one for lemon curd.

    I follow the yogurt cake recipe pretty well exactly, but when I’m adding the eggs I add about 1/3 cup of lemon curd and the grated zest from 2 lemons, mixing this all in with the sugar.

    I thought this concoction might be too heavy and just sink like a leaden lump, but it didn’t; it was light and fluffy and deliciously lemony. Very interesting, and very good for breakfast.


    Erica De Mane

    P.S. I have an Italian food website at When you get some time, I’d love for you to take a look.

  • hi, I enjoyed your blog very much, I specially love your photos, they are as good as your receipes.


  • Will definitely try your granola recipe!
    I just started my blog last month and I aspire to have great design and organization like you ! Check out my blog..I was just raving about granola from “Le pain quotidien”.

  • CQ

    I thought we were alone!
    My sister still has the same breakfast on saturdays as she did when we were young – two slices of brioche, lightly toasted with nutella thickly spread…(we were only allowed such decadence once a week)
    I have been through many obsessions since then – but my favourite is brioche, toasted, then spread with butter, brown sugar and a sprinkle of cinnamon and lightly grilled…..i havent had it in ages – i feel tomorrow might be the day!!

  • Mmmmm, chocolate granola! Yes, I went through a long and happy phase of eating that too – I think mine was called Choco Crunch and it was just marvellous. Had some at a hotel breakfast buffet in Germany last year as well – reason enough to go back to the same hotel!
    And as for the maple pecan granola, who would have thought it was so easy. Will definitely try that – thanks!

  • Courtney

    For those who substituted a different nut, did you also substitute the lime zest for another flavoring or omit it completely? I plan to use walnuts. Maple walnut is classic!


  • Courtney – I’m sorry I didn’t see your question when you posted it. I imagine you’ve moved on since then :) but if others are interested, here are my thoughts.

    If you substitute other nuts for the macadamias, you can either omit or replace the lime zest: with walnuts, orange zest would be nice; with hazelnuts, how about lemon zest? A touch of freshly grated ginger is also a fine option.

  • Bianca Black

    So it’s been 8 years since you’ve posted this recipe and I’m obviously late making this granola, but I just want to comment that I love it! I swapped out the macadamia for almonds and used lemon zest, and the aroma as it was baking in the oven was intoxicating. Thanks so much for the recipe!

  • When I lived in Paris, I always ate a Quaker granola that was full of dried fruit. They had one of orchard fruits and one of summer fruits, I think. And when I came back to the states, I thought, oh, it’s Quaker, I’ll find it. Nope! It doesn’t exist here. That and Yoplait without gelatin! Why do they put gelatin in it here and not there? It tastes completely different in France. Plus, they make a pear flavor. Mmmmmmmmm. Two more reasons I have to move back to Paris someday. Know anybody who needs a pastry chef?

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