A Recipe & Review: Cocoa Almond Granola by Joy the Baker

If there's one blog you absolutely need to be reading, it's Joy Wilson's Joy the Baker food blog. People, she is hilarious, and her recipes are always incredibly tasty. I think most of her subscribers secretly want to be her best friend. Right?! If you're thinking about getting a cookbook that offers sweet treats, baked goods, and green smoothies, this one has to be on your kichen shelf! 

As part of my decision to start including recipe books in my review list, I've been confronted with the dilemma of how one actually reviews a cookbook. Do you try everything single recipe and then report back? Or, do you try a few things, give it a yay or nay, and call it a day? 

The latter seemed like the most reasonable option because if you're anything like me you probably have a ton cookbooks-- some you rely on to make a few delicacies on special occasions, gifts that are beautiful but too scary to actually bake from, and then all the others that are totally reliable companions (save from a fire type books). So, with all that being said, this recipe will be the first installment of three recipes sampled from one title. 

*Note: I would never actually save a cookbook from a fire, or any book for that matter (gasps), but I would certainly get my cats out. 

I decided I'd tackle a recipe that's popular, seldom made at home, and perfect for gifting. 


Yes, granola. I love the stuff. I eat it sprinkled over my oatmeal or cereal, I mix it in greek yogurt, or scoop it up for a quick snack. The crunch is such a beautiful thing. Plus, granola is incredibly easy to make and doesn't require a lot of time. Win!

Cocoa Almond Granola  
4 cups old-fashioned oats
1 cup raw whole almonds
1 cup sweetened shredded coconut
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup honey
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 Tbsp butter
2 tsp pure vanilla extract

Place racks in the center and upper third of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside. (I used one large baking sheet and a silpat liner.)

In a large bowl, toss together oats, almonds, coconut, cinnamon, cocoa powder and salt. Set aside.

In a medium saucepan combine sugar, honey, oil and butter. Stir over medium heat until sugar dissolves and mixture begins to bubble. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.

Pour the warm sugar mixture over the oat mixture and toss with a wooden spoon. Toss until all of the oats and almond bits are at least moistened by the sugar mixture. Spoon mixture onto prepared baking sheets and place in the oven.

Bake granola for 30 minutes, removing from the oven to toss and stir 2 to 3 times during baking. Granola is done when it is toasted around the edges and fragrant. 

Remove from the oven and cool completely. Store in an airtight container, at room temperature, for up to 2 weeks.

Recipe: 4.5 stars out of 5 (reliable companion).
Give it a try! I'm sure you'll love it. 


  1. Mmmm, I love granola and always mean to make some but never actually get around to it. This recipe looks great though! And ditto on abandoning the books and saving the cats during a fire - that's exactly what I'd do!

    1. Once you make your own, you will want to do so always! I've made quite the number of batches lately and this is by far my favorite!
      And glad we're on the same page with the cats!

  2. I have actually never had granola (it seems really really American to me... Which isn't a reason not to have it, but it's a reason I haven't tried it, and so don't want to make it in case I don't like it!) But OH MY GOSH, I looooove Joy the Baker, and I looooooove her book! Her ultimate chocolate frosting is amazing, just fyi if you haven't tried it :)

    Also- your copy is so beautiful and immaculate! Mine is a bit, um, covered in cake mix and flour and various other things... But that just means I love it, right?

    1. Laura! Granola is so delicious. If you like oats and nuts and the like then you'll love it. And sure.. you hate Americans, I think that is pretty clear here.
      I will definitely have to try the frosting!
      I actually just got the book a few weeks ago so I've only tried two things out of the book, but I make stuff from her site all the time. LOVE IT!
      And that def means you love it. Mine will probably look like that very soon.

  3. Yum! I am not a baker, not even close. But this looks like something that I could do! And it looks delicious.

    1. Yes! Very easy and so good. It really is amazing.

  4. That looks scrummy! I love baking and am always on the hunt for more baking books.

    1. Yes, her cookbook is a must if you love baking. She has more sweet recipes than savory and what have you... SO! If you love sweets, then you have to look into it!

  5. I think reviewing every recipe in a cookbook would be like reviewing every story in a short story collection!

    Thanks for the delish recipe!

    1. Lindsey,
      You are so right! I didn't even think of that. I thought making all and reviewing all would be a little much. This comment makes me feel so much better about my decision! Thanks :)


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