I love to experiment with making prepared food from scratch. Most of the time, homemade food is less expensive, healthier, and better tasting – how can you beat that? Being on the January Money Diet has inspired me to get extra-creative with the food budget this month, and since we eat a lot of graham crackers I thought I’d bake a batch from scratch.
You probably have most of the ingredients for homemade graham crackers in your cupboard already, perhaps with the exception of graham flour. When I first tried this recipe several years ago, I wondered what in the heck graham flour even was. Was there a graham grain or what? I learned that graham flour is made from U.S. #1 dark northern spring wheat that is coarsely stone ground, thus giving graham crackers their distinctive gritty crunch. For the most authentic taste you can purchase graham flour (Bob’s Red Mill and Hodgson Mill sell it), or you can simply use whole wheat flour; your graham crackers will be a little less gritty – but still absolutely yummy.
Here’s the easy recipe:
Homemade Graham Cracker Recipe
- 4 tablespoons butter, softened
- 1/4 cup organic vegetable shortening like Spectrum, or substitute softened butter
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup unbleached pastry flour or all-purpose flour
- 1 ¼ cups graham flour*
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 cup whole milk
In a large bowl, cream the butter, shortening and sugars until fluffy. Add the honey and vanilla and stir well. In a separate bowl, sift the flours with the salt, soda, and baking powder. Add 1/3 of the flour mixture and 1/3 of the milk to the shortening mixture and mix thoroughly. Repeat 2 more times. Chill the dough for several hours or overnight.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C). Roll the dough on a floured board as thin as possible. Using a sharp knife, cut into squares. Arrange on a greased baking sheet and prick each cracker in several places with a fork. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, or until golden brown. Makes about 4 dozen crackers.
*You can substitute whole wheat flour if you don’t have graham flour.
Variation: For cinnamon graham crackers, sprinkle a mixture of sugar and cinnamon over the top of the crackers before baking.