A few years ago, I received a special request for a chocolate chocolate chunk granola recipe from Attune Foods. You see, Attune sadly discontinued their chocolate probiotic granola. It was awesome, and had a loyal following, but marketing a refrigerated granola has its challenges.
Needless to say, Attune anticipated many disappointed customers, and wanted to be ready with a recipe to soothe them. Kind woman that I am, I tested four different batches of dairy-free chocolaty goodness to come up with the delicious recipe below. Our neighbor definitely appreciated the overflow.
This vegan chocolate chocolate chunk granola recipe has now been tested and loved by dozens of Attune customers, and I can happily say that it seems to be helping to fill the void of their beloved granola. Even if you didn’t get the chance to sample their probiotic granola, you’re going to adore this recipe. It’s perfectly sweet for a breakfast or afternoon treat, and it fits most dietary needs – its dairy-free, its vegan, and it can even be soy-free and gluten-free if you so desire! And of course, it’s chocolate …
Special Diet Notes: Chocolate Chocolate Chunk Granola
By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, optionally gluten-free, nut-free, peanut-free, optionally soy-free, vegan / plant-based, and vegetarian.
Cereal Smarts and Gluten-free: I absolutely love Uncle Sam cereal in this chocolate granola recipe (easy to find – even Walmart sells it!) which is made with just toasted wheat berries and flaxseeds. I’m not being biased here either, it simply works so perfectly and is so wholesome. However, you can certainly sub another hearty cereal if you wish. Just make sure the cereal has nice wholesome ingredients, is crispy, and preferably unsweetened since you will be adding natural sweeteners with this granola recipe. Options like Gluten-Free Crisp Rice Cereal and Buckwheat Flakes are great for a gluten-free chocolate chocolate chunk granola. Or, you could certainly use all certified gluten-free oats for the grains in this chocolate chocolate chunk granola recipe (using 4 cups of oats with no cereal), but using part crispy cereal adds another dimension.
Nut-Free or Not: I kept the recipe simple and nut-free, making it allergy-friendly (perfect for nut-free zones in schools). The Uncle Sam cereal does have a good dose of whole flaxseeds, but if you prefer more nut or seed action, feel free to sub some for part of the cereal and/or oats.
Sweetness & Chocolaty Modifications: To note, this chocolate chocolate chunk granola recipe is quite forgiving. Feel free to adjust the sweetness to your tastes, using whatever “sugars” you desire (agave, brown rice syrup, etc.). Also, you can lower the cocoa powder for more of a subtle hot chocolate taste, or increase it for an intense dark chocolate delight. Just be sure that the oats and cereal are well coated – a little liquid in the form of sweetener, oil, or maybe even applesauce will be required. I do prefer to use some oil, as it helps the granola crisp up, but I’ve gone with the minimum for an overall low fat recipe.
Dairy-Free Chocolate: For the chocolate chunks (because what chocolate granola recipe would be complete without chocolate chunks?) I used chopped Attune probiotic dark chocolate bars (sadly discontinued). To help preserve that friendly bacteria, and to keep the chocolate from melting, the chocolate is added after the granola has completely cooled. But, the probiotics are shelf-stable for up to a month, so this granola can be stored at room temperature. For a soy-free, dairy-free, low-sugar, prebiotic + probiotic option, I recommend using Sunbiotics Chocolate Bars. For top allergen-free decadence, Enjoy Life Chocolate Bars are another great option, with a range of cacao percentages available.
- 2 cups rolled oats
- 2 cups whole wheat & flax cereal (see post notes above for gluten-free)
- 3 to 4 tablespoons cocoa powder*
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- ⅓ cup maple syrup, honey, or agave nectar
- ⅓ cup packed brown sugar (can sub coconut sugar)
- 2 tablespoons coconut, grapeseed or rice bran oil
- 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
- ⅔ to ¾ cup finely chopped dairy-free dark chocolate (see post notes above for recommendations)
- Preheat your oven to 250ºF and lightly grease two 9×13-inch glass baking dishes or line baking sheets with silicone baking mats (I prefer the glass dishes in this recipe).
- Combine the oats, cereal, cocoa powder, and salt in a large bowl.
- Place the sweeteners and oil in a saucepan, and heat until the sugars are mostly dissolved. For a shortcut, you can heat the wet ingredients in the microwave in 15 second intervals, until the brown sugar is mostly dissolved (just 30 to 45 seconds total).
- Stir the vanilla into the liquid ingredients, and pour all over the dry ingredients. Stir to coat.
- Spread the granola out in your prepared pans.
- Bake for 60 to 90 minutes – this will vary quite a bit on climate (in dry climates my granola crisps up in less than an hour sometimes, on the coast, it can easily take 90 minutes), checking in every 20 to 30 minutes to stir. If using metal pans, check in more often as the granola tends to brown much more quickly. The granola will still be soft when done, but it firms up as it cools.
- Once completely cool, stir in the chocolate chunks.This granola should stay fresh in a sealed container for about a week, if it lasts that long.