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Chocolate Chia Granola

This Chocolate Chia Granola will give you an extra energy boost, it's full of incredible ingredients like raw cacao, cacao nibs, coconut oil, and chia. It's the perfect granola for topping yogurt or a smoothie bowl!
Jan 14, 2016 | Joy McCarthy

You may have noticed based on my recent post for Chocolate Quinoa Cake, that I've been on a bit of a chocolate kick lately. Have you tried it yet?

It's been freezing cold here in Toronto, Canada and chocolate is definitely a comfort food for me, which is why I've been loving this granola. This Chocolate Chia Granola is perfect for a chilly morning or those days when you need an extra hit of energy! I mean, just look at all those superfoods!

Chocolate Chia Granola

We spent the holidays with my in-laws down south in Florida, so I'm feeling even more like a wimp when being blasted in the face with cold air. However, I've been doing my best to still get outside and take Vienna for walks to get my nature vitamin. :) In fact, I'm just coming back from a nice walk in the park. It seems like the only way to get Vienna to sleep during the day is if we go for a walk, which reminds me, I really need to write a Vienna update, I'm behind in my monthly updates. Where is the time going?!!

Back to the granola; I don't know about you, but I find good-quality store-bought granola very expensive. I prefer to make it myself, then I can control exactly what ingredients go into it. This granola is super-energizing and filling because of the raw cacao powder and nibs, plus the coconut oil.

The chocolate syrup is very easy to make, and if you use raw cacao, you'll be getting a megawatt dose of anti-inflammatory and antioxidant nutrients. Just keep the temp on your stove super low so it doesn't burn. By the way, this is exactly how I make my chocolate bark in my book Joyous Health – raw cacao, coconut oil and maple syrup – using different measurements of course. 

 I would suggest you give this syrup a little taste test. You may wish it to be a touch sweeter. I don't mind mine being super-duper bittersweet, which is why I only use 1/4 cup of dark maple syrup. Just listen to your taste buds!

Here's the recipe:

Breakfast & Brunch
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  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup raw cacao powder
  • 1/4 cup real maple syrup
  • 3 cups organic oats
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup shredded coconut
  • 1/4 cup raw pumpkin seeds
  • 1/3 cup raw cacao nibs
  • 3 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  1. Preheat oven to 350F degrees.
  2. In a small pot on the stove, melt the coconut oil. Add the raw cacao powder and the maple syrup and stir until combined. Be careful not to burn the mixture, keep temperature on low. Once combined, remove from heat and set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the oats, cranberries, coconut, pumpkin seeds, raw cacao nibs chia seeds and cinnamon.
  4. Next, pour chocolate syrup mixture over oat mixture and mix until fully combined.
  5. Give it a taste test. If you want it sweeter, you can add a touch more maple syrup.
  6. Grease a cookie sheet or cover with parchment paper. You'll need to divide the mixture between 2 cookie sheets because it won't fit all on to one. Bake for 10-15 minutes. Remove from oven, stir the granola so that it bakes evenly. Bake for 5-10 minutes more.


This makes enough granola to fill 3 small mason jars, approximately 4 1/2-5 cups of granola.
Raw cacao powder and nibs can be purchased from a health food store or the natural foods section of your grocery store. Giddy Yoyo, Organic Traditions and Navitas Naturals are all great brands.

If you can't or don't eat oats, you can use quinoa flakes instead. Spelt flakes are really nice too!

This recipe makes three full mason jars, despite that jar in the back being half-full. I had breakfast before Walker took a shot of the jars of granola. I enjoyed it with some sheep's milk yogurt and frozen organic raspberries. Just look at all that chocolatiness!! It was SOOOOO yummy and it's really easy to make granola.

Please do let me know what you think of this recipe! If you have any fun ideas of additional ingredients please post below.

Stay warm!


Amanda   •   January 17, 2016

This is super delicious and as you say, much healthier and even more cost effective than store bought. I added a small handful of raw organic sunflower seeds and another crushed pecans. I cooked the second batch a little less than the first / it does burn easily I found :) yum!

Kate McDonald Walker   •   January 18, 2016

Christine   •   January 18, 2016

Made a 1/2 batch of this granola over the weekend an it turned out wonderful! Delicious topper for smoothie bowls, yogurt, of just a little sweet treat when a craving hits.


Jordana   •   January 21, 2016

This is super delicious! I subbed cranberries for gojiberries. However, it burns really easily and I think next time I would add the gojiberries after baking as mine burnt :(


Lorese Harper   •   January 21, 2016

Hello, I am allergic to oats (and rice)... what would you substitute? This recipe looks yummy!

Kate McDonald Walker   •   January 22, 2016

Amanda   •   February 24, 2016

Looks wonderful! Going to make some today! Just wondering how long this will keep? Thanks

Kate McDonald Walker   •   February 24, 2016

Valerie Belair   •   April 12, 2016

2nd time I make this and I added 2 tbsp of organic orange zest. To die for. My husband kept asking me for more granola. ;)

Heather Allen   •   April 12, 2016

Colleen   •   April 29, 2016

I've got this in the oven right now and it smells like heaven! I omitted cranberries and cacao nibs (none on hand) but added crushed almonds and orange zest. Cannot wait to try it! My question is, could I freeze half the batch to keep it fresh? I definitely won't be eating the whole thing in a week (although I'm sure I'll REALLY want to!!)

Heather Allen   •   April 29, 2016

melissa goulet   •   October 4, 2016

Hi there what would suggest instead of oatmeal. My daughter has quite a sensativity even to gf oats. also cashews and almonds.... thanks!

Heather Allen   •   October 4, 2016

Xena   •   March 25, 2017

Seriously, you found granola expensive? You, using so many, mostly expensive ingredients??

Rachel Molenda   •   March 27, 2017

Nancy   •   January 9, 2018

Looks good! What brand of dried cranberries do you recommend? Thanks!

Rachel Molenda   •   January 9, 2018

Janice   •   April 27, 2018

Mmm...I am definitely going to make this. I'm loving your cookbook Joyous detox! I'm always interested in healthy eating and learning about how it effects our bodies. 😊

Rachel Molenda   •   April 27, 2018

Dana   •   January 5, 2019

I love this granola - it is my go-to and I make it often! The first time I made it the dried cranberries got too hard when baked so I omit this ingredient and always add chopped nuts.

Joy McCarthy   •   January 5, 2019

Melanie   •   October 23, 2019

Which brand of raw cacao do you use?

Joy McCarthy   •   October 24, 2019

Maria C Chaves   •   January 13, 2021

I normally bake my granola at 200 degrees for an hour. Mix it and leave it in the oven overnight to make sure it drys well. I find this way my granola last a long time as I usually make 3 times the amount of the recipe. No problem with the granola burning.

Joy McCarthy   •   January 14, 2021

Noor   •   January 24, 2021

Delicious!! I added hemp seeds and pecans. I didn’t have any pumpkin seeds on hand. Also, a touch of sea salt. Perfection!

Joy McCarthy   •   January 25, 2021

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