Make your breakfast dreams come true with crunchy, colorful birthday cake granola! You only need seven simple ingredients to make it.
Y'all, I am extremely pumped to share this recipe! It was inspired by a pricey bag of birthday cake granola that I picked up at the grocery store. The concept was so smart and simple, I just new I could concoct a homemade version for less.
What does it taste like?
Birthday cake granola has a light vanilla flavor with a hint of almond. It's sweet and crunchy, with crisp rice cereal and sprinkles bringing texture to the table.
If you're not a fan of almond, you can simply use more vanilla extract instead, but I feel like it really gives this recipe a special flavor that evokes a slice of birthday cake.
The technique for this recipe is based on my apricot ginger granola recipe. The baking time on this recipe is a bit less, because you're going for a lighter flavor.
To start, make a simple sauce, toss it with rolled oats and crisp rice cereal, and bake it low and slow. Baking granola takes about 45 minutes, but the wait is so worth it. And this recipe makes the house smell amazing!
For this granola, the sauce is a mix of oil, maple syrup, vanilla and almond extracts and just a tiny pinch of salt. Whisk those together, then toss them with the oats while the oven preheats.
Now, spread the oats mixture onto a baking pan, making sure to spread it out across the whole pan.
You're going to cook your granola in three 15-minute rounds of baking. Every 15 minutes, you give the oats a very thorough stir. You want to move the oats from the outside of the sheet to the middle and vice versa, so everything cooks evenly.
After baking, let the granola cool for 10 minutes in the pan before tossing it with vegan rainbow sprinkles!
Finding vegan sprinkles
What isn't vegan about sprinkles?
A lot of conventional sprinkles are coated in confectioner's glaze, which is made from bugs. EW!
Confectioner's glaze gives sprinkles a glossy finish.
I've had good luck finding vegan sprinkles at regular grocery stores lately, though! Sprinkles that are labeled as "natural" often don't contain confectioner's glaze. You know you've got a contender if the sprinkles have a more matte finish as opposed to a glossy one. Just check the ingredients!
Worst case, you can find vegan sprinkles online. There are some very cute ones!
For gluten-free, just make sure that your rolled oats and rice cereal are gluten-free. Crisp brown rice cereal is fine, as well.
You can use agave nectar in place of the maple syrup, if you prefer. It will alter the flavor a bit, but it will still be delicious!
If you don't like almond or don't want to buy almond extract, that's no problem! You can omit it and just use another ¼ teaspoon of vanilla instead.
How to serve and store the granola
Once it has cooled completely, store your granola in an airtight container in the pantry, just like any other cereal. It will keep for about a week, if you can resist eating it all the day you make it.
Serve this anywhere you'd use plain Jane granola! I like it with a splash of vegan milk for a quick breakfast. or sprinkled on top of a smoothie bowl.
It's also great layered with vegan yogurt to make a pretty breakfast parfait. Stick a cherry on top, if you want to get really fancy!
Birthday cake granola
- Preheat the oven to 250° F
- In a small bowl, whisk together the oil, maple syrup, extracts, and salt until they're evenly combined.
- In a large bowl, toss together the maple syrup mixture with the oats and rice cereal. Spread the mixture out onto an ungreased baking sheet.
- Bake for 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes, so your granola cooks evenly. When you stir, make sure that the oats around the perimeter of your pan get pushed to the middle, because otherwise they will burn. Let the cooked granola cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes.
- Toss the cooled granola together with the sprinkles. Store in an airtight container in the pantry until you're ready to eat.