Mexican Granola with Pepitas, Chia Seeds and Chocolate

This Mexican granola is a symphony of flavors and textures! Crunchy oats, nutty pepitas, earthy chia seeds, and rich, decadent chocolate is a celebration of Mexican flavors that you don’t want to miss.

Small Mexican blue and white bowl filled with Mexican style granola.

Mexican Granola

Traditionally speaking, granola isn’t one of the common breakfast foods – but you will find all sorts of Mexican and imported granola brands in the grocery store.

I love making my own granola because I can control what goes into it.

For me the store-bought granola is often too sweet or made with sweeteners I don’t care for. Sometimes it has other ingredients I’m also not a fan of. Let’s just say that I’m picking about the granola I want to eat.

I’ve been making my own homemade granola for over 10 years and though I love to experiment with different flavors and ingredients, this Mexican granola is one I make the most.

My recipe is sweet but not overly so, it has vegan or plant based friendly ingredients that are healthier, plus it infuses traditional Mexican flavors and ingredients into a classic granola mix.

Small bowls filled with the ingredients for making Mexican granola.

Mexican Granola Ingredients

  • old fashioned oats
  • chia seeds
  • pepitas or pumpkin seeds
  • grated piloncillo or dark muscovado sugar
  • 100% natural apple juice
  • coconut oil
  • sea salt
  • canela or ground Ceylon cinnamon
  • craisins or your favorite dried fruit
  • dark chocolate

Mexican granola is more than just a delicious breakfast option; it’s a nutritional powerhouse packed with goodness.

Old-fashioned oats are packed with nutrients and fiber. They are a good source of complex carbohydrates, which provide sustained energy throughout the morning. They are also a good source of protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Additionally they help stabilize blood sugar levels.

Pumpkin seeds, also known as pepitas, are a rich source of magnesium, iron, and zinc, essential minerals that support your body’s overall well-being.

Chia seeds, tiny but mighty, are loaded with omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, and protein, keeping you energized and satiated throughout the morning.

Chocolate, or dark chocolate in particular, is a heart-healthy treat rich in antioxidants, known to combat inflammation and protect your cells from damage.

Canela or Ceylon cinnamon is know to help stabilize blood sugar levels, is an antioxidant, good for your heart and brain function as well as having antimicrobial properties.

A baking sheet with oats, pepitas, chia seeds, and ground cinnamon piled  up on top of it.

Ingredient Substitutions

Another ingredient I occasionally is some puffed amaranth. This is added after the granola has baked and cooled.

If you don’t want to use the piloncillo or sugar you can substitute it with agave nectar or maple syrup. Additionally you will have to omit the apple juice.

I like to use dark chocolate chips or chop a dark chocolate bar and use that instead. Another delicious substitution would be to roughly chop some Mexican chocolate tablets that are used for making hot chocolate.

If you don’t have any chocolate chips or bars at home you can use cocoa powder instead. Cocao nibs would be another great option too.

For the dried fruit you can substitute the craisins with anything you’d like. I sometimes add dried apricots.

A blue bowl with plant based granola made with dried apricots and chocolate chips served with yogurt and sliced mangos.
Previously published on my Spicie Foodie blog in 2016

Sugar Free Granola

You may be wondering if you can make my plant based granola recipe sugar free.

Yes, you can easily make this a sugar free granola recipe by omitting the piloncillo or sugar and just using the 100% natural apple juice. But do notice that the granola texture will be different since it won’t have the sugar to caramelize and give it the same taste and texture.

How to Make Mexican Granola

This recipe couldn’t be any more simple or easier to make. It will take you no time to toss the ingredients together and put them in the oven to bake.

Making the piloncillo syrup in a small glass bowl.

Step 1: Mix the apple juice, sugar or piloncillo, and oil in a small bowl then set aside.

Step 2: Pour the oats, chia seeds, pepitas, salt and cinnamon onto a lightly greased baking sheet (or you can use parchment paper instead). You’ll notice in the video that I added the dried fruit too, baking it will make it harder so if you don’t like that just mix it in at the end with the chocolate chips. Mix until well combined.

Mixing the Mexican granola ingredients on a baking sheet.
Mixing oats with nuts and seeds to make Mexican granola.

Step 3: Pour the apple juice mixture over the oat mixture and mix until well combined. Then spread out and flatten the oats to make an even layer.

Step 4: Bake in the center of oven for 15 minutes then carefully mix and flatten the oats again. Bake 10 more minutes and stir again then bake until it achieves your desired crispiness. I only bake another 4 minutes or so.

Baked Mexican granola being mixed on a cookie sheet.
A cookie sheet filled with baked Mexican chocolate and pepita granola.

Step 5: Remove from the oven and allow to cool before mixing in the chocolate chips and dried fruit if doing so now. If you’d like the chocolate chips to melt a little bit you can mix them in while the granola is still a bit warm.

How to Serve Plant Based Granola

This Mexican style plant based granola can be served with your favorite non-dairy milk and enjoyed as a morning cereal or snack.

It also tastes delicious over plain yogurt, or you can also just eat it by the handfuls as a fun and sweet snack.

Pouring vegan milk into a bowl of freshly baked plant based granola.

What Does This Vegan Granola Taste Like

Amigos, this granola tastes sweet but not overly so. It’s crisp and has a crunch to it but it won’t feel like you’re teeth are cracking with every bite.

There’s the sweet aromatic cinnamon flavor, the nuttiness from the toasted pepitas, the sweet and slight tartness from the craisins followed by the melt in your mouth chocolate goodness.

How to Store Mexican Granola

You can store this delicious granola in an airtight container in your kitchen cabinets or pantry.

It will keep fresh and crisp for a couple weeks – that’s if you don’t eat before then!

A blue and white bowl filled with chocolate pepita granola and soy milk.

Mexican Granola Recipe

Amigos, I truly hope you make my Mexican granola recipe. It’s such a treat and whenever I make a batch it never lasts more than a week because I just can’t stop eating it.

With its blend of wholesome ingredients, rich chocolatey goodness, and touch Mexican flavors, this granola is sure to become a staple in your kitchen.

Remember to snap a picture, share it on Instagram and tag me. You can also pin it on Pinterest to spread the love for this delightful recipe.

Small Mexican blue and white bowl filled with Mexican chocolate and pepita granola.

Mexican Granola with Pepitas, Chia and Chocolate

Nancy Lopez &
This easy to make Mexican granola recipe makes a perfect breakfast that will keep you energized all morning long.
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Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Course Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine Mexican, Vegan Mexican Recipe
Servings 12 servings*
Calories 165 kcal


  • ¼ teaspoon coconut oil melted
  • ½ cup 100% natural apple juice you need one without artificial flavors or sweeteners
  • 1.5 tablespoon coconut oil melted
  • ¼ cup dark muscovado sugar or grated piloncillo adjust to taste
  • 3 cups old fashioned oats
  • 1 Tablespoon chia seeds
  • ½ cup pepitas or pumpkin seeds not salted or seasoned
  • ½ teaspoon of fine sea salt adjust to taste
  • ½ teaspoon canela or ground Ceylon cinnamon
  • ¼ cup craisins reduced sugar kind*
  • ½ cup dark chocolate chips


  • Preheat oven to 375F and lightly brush the baking sheet(s) with 1/4 teaspoon (melted) coconut oil — just a small amount to coat the baking sheet(s).
  • In a small bowl mix the apple juice, 1.5 teaspoons coconut oil, sugar or piloncillo until well combined. Set aside and allow the sugar to dissolve stirring now and then.
  • On a baking sheet place the oats, chia seeds, pepitas, craisins or other dried fruit*, salt and cinnamon. Mix until well combined then evenly spread across the baking sheet.
  • Pour the apple juice mixture over the ingredients on the baking sheet. Mix to combine, making sure to evenly coat the dry ingredients with the wet. Then spread evenly across the baking sheet.
  • Bake in the center of the oven for 15 minutes. Then give the granola a good stir and then flatten out to an even layer again. Bake for another 10 minutes.
  • The granola is done baking once the oats are a golden color and feel crispy. It is very important to keep a close eye on the granola and not let it burn. Once the oats are crunchy, remove from the oven and allow to cool.
  • While it is cooling you can add the dried fruit if you didn’t add it earlier, make sure to mix as best as possible. Allow to cool completely before mixing in the chocolate chips.
  • Store in an airtight container until ready to use.


Each serving is 1/3 cup or 40grams. 
* You’ll notice in the video that I added the dried fruit before baking. Please note that baking it will make it harder so if you don’t like that just mix it in at the end with the chocolate chips.


Serving: 12servingsCalories: 165kcalCarbohydrates: 22gProtein: 4gFat: 7gSaturated Fat: 4gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0.003gCholesterol: 0.1mgSodium: 107mgPotassium: 159mgFiber: 3gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 2IUVitamin C: 0.2mgCalcium: 43mgIron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Leave me a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ review and tag me on social media @MexicanMadeMeatless or tag #mexicanmademeatless!

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Looking for a Bowl Like Mine

Amigos so many of you ask me where I get my beautiful Mexican pottery from. The answer is Mexico. I know many of you can’t travel so I’ve put together a gorgeous collection from Amazon. Click the image below to go check it out.

Mexican talavera pieces available in my shop.

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    1. Hi Donna! The 1/4 teaspoon is just a drop to rub on the baking sheets and the 1.5 teaspoons is to mix into the liquid ingredients. I’ve gone into the recipe card and re-organized the ingredients lists to avoid any confusion. Thank you.