I’m always trying to mix it up in terms of my breakfasts and snacks. It can be tricky trying to find the right balance of protein, healthy fats and carbs to fuel you for your day and keep you feeling satisfied. One of my go-to quick fix items is homemade granola. Before I started cooking up my own dishes I would often buy store bought granola but it was such a let down. They always contained gluten, soy, refined sugars and loads of ingredients I couldn’t even attempt to pronounce, yuck. So that got me on my journey to skipping the packaged kind and making my own. I promise you it’s easier than it sounds. The great thing about homemade granola is that, like my Overnight Oats recipe (which this makes a great topping for), can be modified with whatever you have in your cupboard. Though I do have a specific recipe which I tend to stick to, if you don’t have a particular nut or seed just swap it out with another in equal measurement. The flavor may vary slightly and I suggest not swapping out the grains or maple syrup so you get the right consistency but the nuts, seeds and fruit are much easier to do so if needed. Once you have this delectable little cluster of yum you can enjoy it by itself, add it as a topping to things like oats, smoothie bowls, yogurt and even desserts. If that isn’t enough you can also make it the star of the dish by adding a little almond milk and eating it like cereal topped with fruit. I hope you enjoy this quick and healthy recipe!
Chocolate Quinoa and Oat Granola
Makes: Approx. 10 cups/Cook time: 1 hour
- 2 1/2 c gluten-free oats (I used Bob’s Red Mill)
- 1 c quinoa, uncooked (I used Bob’s Red Mill)
- 3/4 c raw almonds, chopped slightly
- 1/2 c pumpkin or sunflower seeds, shelled
- 1/4 c unsweetened coconut, chopped or shredded
- 1/4 c raw pecans, chopped slightly
- 1/4 c raw cashews, chopped slightly
- 4 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 3/4 c maple syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 c dairy free chocolate chips (optional)
- Preheat oven to 225F. Line or lightly grease a baking sheet and set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine all of the dry ingredients (oats through cinnamon).
- In a smaller bowl mix together maple syrup and vanilla and pour over dry ingredients. Mix until everything is evenly coated.
- Spread the mixture in a thin layer over baking sheet and bake for one hour.
- Towards the end of cooking time, once granola has set, remove from oven and sprinkle in chocolate chips. Lightly toss to mix in the chocolate. Return to oven and bake an additional five minutes.
- Remove from the oven and allow the granola to cool. Refrain from mixing when still warm as you’ll end up with smaller crumbles and mushed chocolate. Once cool and chocolate chips have set, it should be easy to break away from the pan/parchment. The granola will last up to 4 weeks stored in an air tight jar or container.