Do you know what’s in your granola?

I was surprised when I found out that my ‘healthy snack’ was made with unnecessary amounts of sugar, oil and butter.  Most granola has more than 25 grams of sugar in one cup (Fruit Loops has less albeit unnatural sugar per cup).  Another disquieting finding is that granola is typically baked with oil and copious amounts of butter.

  • After some perusing of actually healthy homemade granola I found delicious and nutritious alternatives to oil, butter and artificial sugar.  (You are so excited to find out that natural fructose sugar from a banana makes for an ideal substitution!)
  • Granola has recently become my favorite thing to make for my friends and neighbors. I try something new every time and if you are reading this and plan to make your own, add your own flair!
  • Like I mentioned, I try something new each time and I’m not big on measuring out ingredients but here are the portions I use:

Tip: 1 part Liquid for 5 parts Dry mixture seems to work best

Experiment & Enjoy!

Dry Mix:

2 cups of rolled oats
1 cup of sunflower seeds (a friend of mine really loves this addition!)
1 cup of chopped almonds, walnuts, cashews, and/or pecans

Tip: I typically make a mix of nuts and chop until my almond/walnut/whatever is available mix is about 1 cup – depending on your fancy I keep medium chunks of nuts as it tends to please my audience

Blend:

1 ripe or frozen banana
3/4 c water
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp sea salt
optional (tbsp honey or maple syrup)
optional and fun (tbsp all natural peanut butter)

Dried Fruit:

1 cup of dried raisin, cherry, cranberry, blueberry mix yum!

Tip: I get a dried mix of cherries, cranberries and blueberries that is locally grown and dried  from cherryland’s best – then I mix in raisins!

Tasks:

  1. Preheat oven to 350° F
  2. Mix Dry Ingredients in a large/medium bowl
  3. In a blender, magic bullet or mini food processor – blend the banana, honey/maple syrup, salt, and cinnamon, vanilla and any other added flavor bonus
  4. Add blended concoction to the bowl and stir until saturated
  5. Spread in to a single layer on a non-stick cookie sheet (or lined with baking paper)
  6. Bake for about 40 minutes or until your desired crispiness
  • Check every 10 minutes to either flip the oats or break up the chunks
    • Also – Give the sheet a shake up every 10 minutes for even crisping of your granola. (I wear my handy-dandy Ove Glove – thanks Dad!)
  • For my friend who likes big chunks of granola I pack the granola together like a big cookie layer on the sheet, then using a spatula I flip the oat chunks every 10 minutes while it is baking

7. Let cool then add the dried fruit mix

8. Food is meant to be shared – Enjoy your granola with someone who makes you smile!

Yesterday I made a

Cherry · Berry · Almond · Walnut · Peanut Butter · Banana · Sunflower Seed · Granola

Let me know if you have suggestions/requests for my next batch!

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