Honest Fare

Pretty Provisions and Notes from the Kitchen

Muesli. I can’t stop.

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Muesli. I can’t stop., Honest Fare by Gabrielle Arnold

If you need to find me, just follow the trail of oats. Suppose it could be worse. Chocolate fudge, for example, might get me into some trouble. But I see no real harm in walking around with a fist full of rolled oats, nuts and dried fruit. Morning. Noon. And night.  Oh God, I need help.

Please note the obscenely large container of it sitting on the counter. (I can conveniently fit my entire arm in there.)


I get on crazy kicks like this from time to time. For a while there it was rice cakes with smashed avocado, arugula and sriracha chili sauce. Then there was the Green Smoothie Obsession. Now we’re on to muesli. I’ve been eating it plain, with soy milk and over yogurt. Join me?

muesli-with- soy-milk

Muesli isn’t a new discovery for me though – what’s going on here is that I’ve just discovered the perfect recipe. Rolled oats, raw sunflower seeds, shaved almonds, flax seeds, dried dates and figs, golden raisins, cinnamon, salt.


Another secret to this muesli is the order in which you combine things. First, I like to toss the oats with the cinnamon, salt and flax evenly to avoid any of it sticking to the fruit. Then I add chopped dates, a few pieces at a time, and toss with each new addition. It’s important to add the dates this way (and before the other fruit and nuts) because they are really sticky and will clump to themselves if added all at once and bind to everything else if added along with the other fruit. When you add them first, they get coated in the oat dust and basically become invincible.  Another little tip about the dates: To make them easier to handle, I like to put them in the freezer for a few minutes before chopping. Otherwise I find that they get mashed and stick to your fingers.  Anyway, once the dates have been tossed in the oats, you’re good to add the rest of the ingredients. I like to store it a jar so I can shake it up nice and good before eating cause the smaller stuff (like cinnamon, salt and flax) tends to settle at the bottom.


It’s like a healthy, deconstructed cookie. The dates are nature’s caramel. And with no added sugar or oil, it’s SO much better for you than granola. I wasn’t actually going to do a post about this (thought it might be boring), but my love for it has grown so much lately, that I couldn’t really hide it anymore. Plus, I’ve been handing it out left and right and have got some pretty good responses so hopefully you’ll like it too!


ps.  The oats get such a nice texture if you let stand in the milk for a minute or two to absorb some moisture before eating.

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Prep + assembly time: 15 mins. Be sure to add dates before all other fruit and nuts so they don’t clump up. And as always, feel free to experiment with the recipe, adding other nuts/seeds like pepitas and fruit like dried cherries!

You need:

  • 5 cups whole rolled oats
  • 1 tsp salt (or more to taste)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon (or more to taste)
  • 2 tablespoons flax seeds
  • 1/2 cup raw almond slivers
  • 1/3 cup raw sunflower seeds
  • About five dried mission or brown Turkish figs, chopped
  • About 4 large dried dates (plum ones with no added sugar), chopped
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins


  1. Place dates in freezer for a few minutes. Meanwhile, place oats in a bowl and measure out all other ingredients and set aside. Add salt, cinnamon and flax seeds to oats and toss. Remove dates from freezer once nice and firm. Cut in half to remove stone and ten chop into small squares (about 1/4 inch in size).
  2. Add dates to the oats, a few pieces at a time, and toss to coat in oat dust. Do this until you’ve added all the dates. Then add each other ingredient one at a time, tossing well between each.
  3. Store in a large jar and shake before each serving to incorporate the small pieces that settle at the bottom. Eat as is, over yogurt or in choice of milk. If eating in milk, let it sit a couple minutes to absorb some moisture and give the oats a really nice texture.



  1. Posted December 3, 2010 at 1:41 PM | Permalink

    I also feel pretty strongly about muesli! I made my own the summer before last for the first time and was smitten anew by it.

    I always grew up eating it (packaged) in England but making your own is so fun. And as you say, unlike granola, there are no nasty wake up calls about it’s “healthiness” when you make muesli – it really is all goodness!

  2. Posted December 3, 2010 at 4:27 PM | Permalink

    Looks fabulous, Gabi. Also note- the idea of soaking muesli for a few hours or even overnight is that it breaks down the phytates in the oats and flax, making it way more digestible and bioavailable.

  3. Posted December 3, 2010 at 11:12 PM | Permalink

    I got addicted to the stuff while traveling in Australia so now I eat it every morning and am totally obsessed with it as well! Love that you added cinnamon. I will have to try it when I make my next batch.
    Your blog is so beautiful, I look forward to exploring it! :)

  4. Posted December 4, 2010 at 7:09 AM | Permalink

    I had my 1st taste of muesli when I was studying abroad in Australia and loved it. I must make this! I didn’t realize how easy it is to make muesli. :)

  5. Posted December 4, 2010 at 10:05 PM | Permalink

    Oh, I’m so glad to see this post! I’ve been eating muesli for breakfast every day for a year or more, and this year I decided to make a ton of it for holiday gifts — I’m so glad I did! I like adding dates, dried apricots, ginger and cinnamon, but otherwise it sounds like our recipes are roughly the same. <3

  6. Posted December 5, 2010 at 2:01 AM | Permalink

    I have been following for a little over 2 weeks now and am enamored. But you had me here. I live in Germany working in a US hospital and just LOVE the museli anywhere I travel in the EU. One of my favorites has dried big figs and apricots and almonds. On top of gooey yogurt and a smudgen of french honey, wow…you’re right…super yummy.
    I even put it on my frozen quark at night. Thanks for sharing your passion

  7. Posted December 5, 2010 at 4:26 AM | Permalink

    I am a sucker for muesli as well. While I like sweet granola, I agree this is a healthier way to start the morning. Thanks for sharing your muesli tips. :)

  8. Kel
    Posted December 5, 2010 at 6:52 PM | Permalink

    On a recent trip to Italy I enjoyed Muesli over yogurt every morning. So happy I can recreate this at home!


  9. Posted December 5, 2010 at 7:49 PM | Permalink

    This looks like such a great recipe. I can see why you are addicted. I love the tip about the dates, btw… I get so annoyed at how sticky they get when you’re chopping them — but now I know what to do!

  10. Posted December 6, 2010 at 9:18 AM | Permalink

    oooo…can’t wait to try! now only to translate these ingredients into chinese and find them in the grocery store.

    side note: your caramel apple cupcakes were wonderful!!! sadly, the candy coating didn’t work for me (my beijing kitchen equipment isn’t up to par), but a dot of red frosting on top did the trick. thank you so much!

  11. Posted December 6, 2010 at 6:19 PM | Permalink

    I’m a huge fan of muesli (and granola and generally all things oat-related). Thanks for a great recipe I’ll definitely have to try!

  12. Posted December 7, 2010 at 7:05 PM | Permalink

    I love muesli too! I’ll eat that for weeks at a time and not get tired of it. I can’t wait to try this recipe. Thanks for sharing that and your beautiful photos!

  13. Posted December 8, 2010 at 12:45 AM | Permalink

    Oh yum! We’re moving into summer over here in Australia, so I’ve been drinking lots of smoothies for breakfast. My favourite smoothie is a banana, strawberry and muesli concoction. But I think it’s nearly time for a straight muesli, fruit and yoghurt breakfast.


  14. Posted December 8, 2010 at 12:45 AM | Permalink

    PS. I want that jar!

  15. Posted December 27, 2010 at 8:13 PM | Permalink

    I have just discovered your blog. I love this recipe. I agree with you about feelings for muesli. I have often dreamt of ways to incorporate it into every meal!

  16. Posted January 4, 2011 at 10:42 AM | Permalink

    I made some and I loooove it. I didn’t know I loved muesli! It’s fantastic. The first bite is kind of like, “whoa, what is this weird texture,” and then all of a sudden I want to eat the whole jar.

    I couldn’t find figs in my grocery store, so I used dried cranberries. It’s delicious, but I’m curious about the figs…

  17. Michelle
    Posted January 26, 2011 at 5:17 PM | Permalink

    We’ve been making our own muesli for years. We also include some corn flakes or raisin bran (half as much as the oats), shaved coconut (the dry kind, not the sticky sweet kind), and “puffs” — the non-sweetened version of Smacks — either wheat, kamut, millet, etc. Some days I add blueberries. Other days banana. Occasionally some of my toddler’s homemade pureed fruit from the freezer. With milk or yogurt. Depending on the mood!

  18. gabi
    Posted January 26, 2011 at 11:32 PM | Permalink

    All that sounds awesome…and like I should have some dried fruit in my freezer!

  19. Lucy
    Posted February 20, 2011 at 4:32 PM | Permalink

    Just made this and it’s delish! I added pumpkin seeds and chopped hazelnuts. Yummmm!

  20. Trish
    Posted March 9, 2011 at 11:38 PM | Permalink

    Love muesli but prefer toasted. How do I toast this batch please?

  21. gabi
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 1:29 PM | Permalink

    I’d recommend following the recipe and just leaving out the dried fruit. Then go ahead and toast it the same you do your other muesli (around 350 degrees until toasted to your liking). Then add stir in the dried fruit once the muesli has cooled. Sounds good that way :)

  22. Posted May 27, 2011 at 12:04 AM | Permalink

    This looks delicious – I am an oat fanatic. I also was interested in trying the rice cakes w/ avocado, sriracha, etc, but the link unfortunately appears to be broken.

  23. gabi
    Posted May 27, 2011 at 9:02 AM | Permalink

    Nicole – Thank for your comment. And I fixed the link!

  24. Ria
    Posted July 22, 2011 at 5:06 PM | Permalink

    I got hooked on Muesli when I was studying abroad n England, but hadn’t found anything over here that was quite the same. Needless to say, I was probably a bit too excited to find this recipe- my muesli-induced fanaticism was more than a bit undignified. So I got everything out to make it, only to find that the cinnamon that I swear was in the cupboard that morning had mysteriously disappeared, I was not a happy camper. I figured I may as well finish what I started, so I threw in some nutmeg in its place and it was ambrosial- sweet, but with a bit of a kick. Thanks so much for posting this- finding it really made my week.

  25. Cathy D.
    Posted July 30, 2011 at 5:12 PM | Permalink

    I have to admit – I was pretty skeptical on this. I don’t usually care for oats unless they’re in oatmeal. Skeptical enough that I only made a half batch. But, all these rave reviews had me thinking you guys might be on to something. You were all so right! Thanks for the great recipe! I’ve never had muesli before but now I have a new healthy snack!

  26. Melissa
    Posted May 30, 2012 at 10:25 AM | Permalink

    Found this post via pinterest and am so glad I did! I spent a spring break in Europe and loved having muesli for breakfast! My favorite tasted very similar to your recipe! I’ve been making it at night and letting it soak with soymilk. In the morning I add half of a small apple chopped to it. So delicious!!! Thanks so much!

  27. Annie
    Posted June 3, 2012 at 3:49 AM | Permalink

    Sounds delicious, I will also be trying my own. I love muesli and yoghurt to start my day

  28. Ijo
    Posted January 6, 2013 at 12:07 PM | Permalink

    I stumbled upon this recipe while searching for more information on muesli and it is excellent. I’ve enjoyed this cereal at least 5 days out of the week for the last 3 months and even made some for my family over Thanksgiving. The one caution- Flaxseeds grow rancid when not refrigerated. It would be better for people to add a 1/2 teaspoon of ground flaxseed to their cereal daily vs putting it into the recipe, unless the entire container is refrigerated.

  29. gabi
    Posted January 7, 2013 at 11:38 AM | Permalink

    I’m so glad you’re enjoying the muesli as much as I do! I wanted to respond about the spoiling flax seeds. It’s true, flax seeds can turn rancid, but this typically happens more quickly with ground flax. That’s why it’s best to use freshly ground flax or refridgerate your flax meal. However, the whole seeds last much longer – up to a year if stored in a cool dry place in an air tight container. I keep mine in the cabinet and they are good for at least 2-3 months. I’ve never had them spoil on me in the muesli so I was surprised to hear that. Out of curiosity, are you using whole flax seeds or ground? Thanks for the feedback!

  30. Luis M.
    Posted October 6, 2013 at 9:57 PM | Permalink

    No, this post is FAR from boring. I’m OBSESSED with this stuff. I pack a mason jar with oats, fruit, nuts, needs, nut milk, honey, yogurt, berries, and chia seeds and let it soak in the fridge over night. The perfect breakfast.

  31. Courtney
    Posted January 23, 2015 at 6:27 AM | Permalink

    Thank God! Someone else who shares this addiction! I eat muesli all hours of the day. My boyfriend thinks I am INSANE but I knew there had to be others. Nice to meet fellow oat-holics like me!

    Thank you for sharing!