Matcha Cranberry Granola is loaded with healthy ingredients and packed with antioxidants from matcha. It tastes earthy, perfectly balanced with the nuttiness of nuts and seeds as well as tartness from dried cranberries.
Since sharing about my basic Honey Granola with you a few weeks ago, I have pretty much been enjoying granola for breakfast. I think it is about time to share with you how to customize the basic Homemade Granola recipe. Matcha Cranberry Granola is perfect because you just need to add a little bit of matcha to bring your breakfast cereal to the next level and still keeping it healthy.
What is Matcha?
Matcha is a type of green tea made by taking young tea leaves and grinding them into a bright green powder. The powder is then whisked with hot water. This is different from regular green tea, where the leaves are infused in water, then removed.
Because the whole leaf is powdered and ingested, instead of just water infused through the tea leaves, matcha has significantly greater substances and deeper flavor than green tea. Moreover, you cannot grind the regular green tea to make matcha, considering matcha is made from shade-grown tea leaves. Processing regular green tea involves the leaves being left in the sun. Comparatively, matcha bushes are specifically kept undercover to increase the chlorophyll and amino acid level in the leaves. That is why matcha has a much richer flavor than green tea.
Please note that matcha comes in both ceremonial-grade and culinary-grade. Ceremonial-grade is considered higher quality and should be used for drinking. Meanwhile, the culinary-grade powder is intended for baking and cooking purposes. For making this recipe, culinary grade matcha will suffice.
Benefit of Matcha
Matcha, like other green teas, contains a class of antioxidants called catechins. Matcha is high in a catechin called EGCG (epigallocatechin gallate), which is believed to have cancer-fighting effects on the body. According to the latest innovation in antioxidant research, matcha is packed with exponentially more antioxidants than any other ‘superfood’. Studies have linked green tea to a variety of health benefits, like helping to prevent heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and cancer, and even encouraging weight loss.
Incorporating Matcha into Every Day’s Food
Loaded with all-around amazing antioxidants and belly fat-busting compounds called catechins, this green tea powder packs a big punch of good-for-you nutrients. And when you combine health-boosting green tea with regular exercise and the proper foods, you’re guaranteed to see even faster, better results.
Try adding a tablespoon or two to your baked goods. It doesn’t magically diminish the effects of the sugar and other unhealthy ingredients baked goods usually contain, but at least you’ll be getting a side of anti-aging antioxidants and powerful metabolism-boosting compounds along with your sweet fix, just like this Matcha Cranberry Granola.
Matcha Cranberry Granola Ingredients
To make this Matcha Cranberry Granola recipe, you will need:
- Rolled oats or old-fashioned oats. Make sure to use rolled oats, not quick oats or instant oats. They are precooked and pressed thinner than rolled oats, so they will not retain their texture as they cook.
- Nuts. My favorite is almonds and cashews in my granola. But feel free to use your favorite nuts or you can replace them with seeds.
- Seeds. The benefits of eating seeds are very similar to those of nuts. I like adding seeds for extra flavor. More importantly, they are much cheaper than nuts. Commonly used seeds in granola include pumpkin seeds, flax seeds, sesame seeds, chia seeds, and sunflower seeds. But feel free to replace them if you prefer.
- Coconut oil. You can use neutral oils like canola or grapeseed, but I prefer to use virgin (unrefined) coconut oil which is delicious, aromatic, and healthier.
- Honey. It offers several health benefits and is particularly healthier than using refined sugar. You can substitute this with maple syrup.
- Salt. To help bring out the flavor. Do not skip it.
- Matcha powder. Matcha makes the cluster bright green with an earthy taste. It is packed with antioxidants and many health benefits.
- Dried fruit. I choose dried cranberries because it gives extra sweetness and tanginess that balance the bitter-earthy taste of matcha. They also make a vibrant contrast color to the green granola. Make sure to add it after the granola finished baking to prevent it from getting burnt.
- Additional mix-ins. You can add unsweetened coconut flakes for more flavor. Make sure to add it 5 minutes before you finish baking to ensure they are nicely toasted and not burnt.
Make Your Granola Clumpy
If you like big clumps in your granola, press down the granola with the back of a spatula after stirring the mixture at the halfway baking point. Then, put the pan back into the oven to finish baking. Keep in mind that the granola will not be dry right out of the oven. It will dry as it cools down. After the granola is lightly golden and fully cooked, let the granola cool completely before breaking it up. If you do not love clumpy granola, stir the granola occasionally after it cools done completely.
More Granola Recipes
If you love making homemade granola, try out also these delicious granola flavors!
- Honey Granola
- Cashew Chocolate Granola
- Lemon Cranberry Granola
- Chocolate Orange Granola
- Chocolate Espresso Granola