This tahini granola is a grown-up take on crunchy childhood favourites. Packed with nuts and seeds, it’s a wholesome breakfast or snack that will keep you going until lunchtime. And the sesame, citrus and honey flavour combination brightens any winter morning.
The crunchy sesame clusters are not overly sweet. Instead, they have a slightly savoury touch with a gentle hum of honey.
It’s also a flexible recipe that’s incredibly easy to make. And it keeps well in an airtight container for weeks.
So, let’s get baking! This tahini granola recipe is sure to become a breakfast staple.
Why you’ll love tahini granola
- Flexible recipe: Substitute to your heart’s content to use what you have available. Flex your creative kitchen muscles and use your favourite combination of nut or seed butter, nuts, seeds and flavouring.
- Dietary requirements: The granola recipe is naturally dairy-free and gluten-free (be sure to use gluten-free oats). But you can also make it vegan by omitting the egg whites or swapping it for aquafaba. And replace the honey with pure maple syrup.
- Wholesome indulgence: The aroma of this tahini granola will make you feel like you’re in a Middle Eastern bakery. And the crunchy oatmeal clusters with its sesame flavour will have you reaching for more.
So why not whip up a batch of this chunky granola with tahini and enjoy a wholesome breakfast? It seriously is the best granola for snacking, and it trumps store-bought granola any day.
Tahini Granola Ingredients
- Oats: Use old-fashioned oats (traditional rolled oats or jumbo oats in some countries) and not quick-cooking oats. Be sure to look for gluten-free rolled oats if you need things to stay sans gluten.
- Buckwheat: Despite the name, buckwheat is not related to wheat. It’s a grain-like seed that crisps up beautifully when toasted.
- Seeds: Sesame seeds double the nutty tahini flavour, but you can also add sunflower seeds.
- Nuts: Flaked almonds fit this Persian flavour profile, but you can use any other nuts you happen to have already.
- Salt: I use fine sea salt to add a mouthwatering savouriness to the tahini granola. You can also use Diamond Crystal kosher salt can also be used in equal quantities.
- Egg whites: The protein in the egg white makes everything clump together in crispy clusters. But you can omit it (or use aquafaba for a vegan version).
- Orange juice: You only need 2 tablespoons of orange juice. Stir any remaining orange juice into yoghurt to enjoy with the tahini granola.
- Orange zest: This really drives home that citrus flavour. You need about half a tablespoon of zest.
- Tahini: The star of the tahini granola show. Tahini – a paste made from ground sesame seeds – has a nutty flavour. If you have a food processor, it is easy to make your own tahini from roasted sesame seeds. See how to make tahini at home.
- Honey: I love the granola recipe with honey and orange, but you can replace the honey with maple or brown rice syrup if you want. If you don’t need to keep things refined sugar-free, use brown sugar instead and gently heat the tahini mixture (before adding the egg whites) in a small saucepan to dissolve.
- Olive oil: Any mild-flavoured oil will also work here. Just avoid toasted sesame oil as the flavour is overpowering.
Related Post: How to make tahini at home
Swap the buckwheat for more oats. I love the crunchy buckwheat kernels, but you can replace the buckwheat with more rolled oats.
No oranges? Replace the orange juice and zest with a teaspoon of rose water (or ½ teaspoon of rose water concentrate) or orange blossom water for lovely Persian-inspired granola. You can also opt for a teaspoon vanilla extract and a pinch of ground cardamom or a teaspoon ground cinnamon for a more classic flavour.
Try different nuts and seeds. I use flaked almonds, but you can use roughly chopped almonds, cashew nuts or even peanuts. Swap the sesame seeds with sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds if that is what you have.
Want to make a plant-based granola? Omit the egg white or replace it with aquafaba. Substitute the one egg white with 3 tablespoons of aquafaba, whipped it until foamy. Also, replace the honey with the same amount of maple syrup or brown rice syrup. See this vegan peanut butter granola for more information.
Make it tropical. Stir in a cup of coconut flakes for the last ten minutes of baking, or unsweetened shredded coconut for the last five minutes. And swap the olive oil for melted coconut oil.
Sweeten the deal. I may love things a touch more savoury. But if you love it sweet, go for it! Add some chocolate chips or dried fruit to the cooled granola.
How to make tahini granola
This healthy homemade granola recipe is also super simple.
Make sure to mix wet ingredients until well combined – no oil drops or egg white strands should be visible. Then it is as simple as mixing wet and dry ingredients, spreading it out on a large baking sheet and baking long and slow for the ultimate crunchy clusters.
Step 1: Prep the oven
Preheat the oven to 325 °F (160 °C).
A slow cook at low heat works best for crunchy granola. You want it evenly cooked and not burnt.
Line a baking tray with parchment paper.
Step 2: Make the tahini mixture
Place the egg whites in a medium-sized mixing bowl and whisk until frothy.
Add the tahini, honey, olive oil, orange juice and zest. Whisk together until everything is well combined.
Step 3: Make the granola mixture
In a large mixing bowl, mix the rolled oats, buckwheat, nuts, sesame seeds and salt until evenly combined.
Pour the tahini mixture over the oat mixture and stir everything together until the oats are evenly coated.
Spread the mixture onto the parchment-lined baking tray and spread it out in an even layer.
Step 4: Bake the granola
Place the sheet pan on the middle rack of the oven.
After 20 minutes, rotate the tray for even cooking. Bake for 10 more minutes.
Take the pan from the oven and stir in a gentle flipping motion to preserve some chunky clusters. Try to move any darker clumps of granola on the edges to the middle of the tray.
Bake for 10 minutes and remove from the oven. Stir in the same gentle flipping motion.
Return the granola to the oven for a final 5 – 10 minutes, just until your granola is golden brown all over.
Wait for the granola to cool completely in the baking tray.
Transfer cooled granola to an airtight container or sealable jar and store it at room temperature for up to a month.
If you want to keep it for longer, you can also freeze homemade granola for a few months. Freezing granola is great if you live in a very humid area.
Can I double the recipe?
Yes, you sure can!
Just roughly double the surface area of your baking sheet. So, either use two half-sheet pans or one full-sized one.
If two trays don’t fit next to each other on the middle rack, place them on two different oven racks – changing the positions whenever you take them out to stir.
I eat my chunky homemade granola with Greek yoghurt. For an extra hit of orange, stir any leftover orange juice into the yoghurt.
Scoop the orange yoghurt into your favourite bowl. Then top with your homemade tahini granola and drizzle with honey. Add some more orange zest if you feel like it – I always do!
Or try your sesame granola with milk or oat milk. Why not double up on the oaty goodness? Add a handful of fresh berries or seasonal fruit.
And if you simply want to grab a bowl of sesame granola chunks and snack away? Go for it! You do you.
Enjoy your orange tahini granola any way you like – and let me know your favourite way to enjoy it in the comments below!
Frequently asked questions
Tahini is a paste made from hulled sesame seeds ground into a smooth texture. The flavour is mild and nutty, and the consistency is runnier than peanut butter.
You can substitute honey in granola with maple, brown rice or agave syrup. If you prefer brown sugar, gently heat it with the wet ingredients to dissolve.
Some granola recipes use oil and sugar to create granola chunks. But a better solution is to add a protein like whisked egg whites or aquafaba.
Serve granola for breakfast with milk or yoghurt, fresh fruit and a drizzle of honey. Or enjoy it on its own as a crunchy snack.
If your granola is not as chunky as you prefer, add protein to help bind the ingredients. Use whisked egg white or aquafaba for a plant-based alternative and evenly mix it into your granola mixture before baking at a low temperature.
Recipe inspiration (+ cookbook recommendations)
The first time I made the sesame crumble recipe in Falastin by Sami Tamimi and Tara Wigley, I was instantly hooked.
Over time, their crumble evolved into this delicious tahini granola with honey and orange. The pages overflow with beautiful tahini recipes – only one of many reasons why Falastin will forever remain a firm favourite on the cookbook shelf.
Tahini Granola Recipe
- Baking sheet – A half-sheet pan is the perfect size.
- 1 cup old-fashioned oats, gluten-free if required
- ¾ cup buckwheat
- ½ cup sesame seeds
- ½ cup raw flaked almonds
- 1 teaspoon ground sea salt
- 1 egg white (optional)
- ¼ cup tahini
- 6 tablespoons honey
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 small orange, juice (2 tablespoons) and zest (½ tablespoon)
- Heat the oven to 325 °F and line the rimmed baking tray with parchment paper. The larger your baking tray, the quicker your granola will cook, so keep an eye on the granola towards the end.
- Add all the dry ingredients to a large bowl and mix.
- Place the egg whites in a second mixing bowl and whisk until frothy. Add tahini, honey, olive oil, 2 tablespoons of orange juice and ½ tablespoon zest. Whisk until everything is well combined.
- Mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until everything is evenly coated.
- Transfer the mixture to the lined baking tray and place it on the middle rack of the oven.
- After 20 minutes, rotate the tray for even cooking. Bake for 10 more minutes.
- Take the pan from the oven and stir in a gentle flipping motion to preserve some chunky clusters. Try to move any darker clumps of granola on the edges to the middle of the tray. Bake for 10 minutes and remove from the oven. Stir in the same gentle flipping motion.
- Return the granola to the oven for a final 5 – 10 minutes, just until your granola is golden all over.
- Allow the granola to cool down completely in the baking tray. It will continue to crisp up as it cools down. Store it in a sealed container for up to two weeks.
- This recipe is tested in a conventional oven. If you are using a fan oven, reduce the oven temperature accordingly.
- You can omit the egg white, but the granola will be less chunky. Or, for a vegan alternative, add 3 tablespoons of whisked aquafaba. See this vegan peanut butter granola recipe for more information on aquafaba granola.
- Find more variations and substitutes in the ingredient section.
- The more crowded your baking sheet is, the slower it will crisp up. If you decide to double the recipe, use two baking trays or one larger tray if your oven allows.
- You will only need 2 tablespoons of orange juice. If you have a large or especially juicy orange, mix any leftover juice into yoghurt for serving with the granola.
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