Everyone seems to be looking for a quick fix to lose weight. They go to extremes like fasting, juice-only diets, meat-only diets and somehow through it all healthy grains and carbs have become the enemy. But with it’s ability to keep you regular and lower your cholesterol,, rolled oats are a winner in my book and a staple in most, if not all, my family breakfasts.
Granola, on the other hand, I’ve always shied away from. Not because I didn’t enjoy the taste, or that delightful nutty crunch, but because any store-bought variety was loaded with sugar. The World Health Organization has said that a person’s diet should consist of no more than 10% sugar but somehow our Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) here in the U.S. allows for a whopping 25%… and we wonder why obesity and other chronic diseases are skyrocketing? But I was asked to make a granola for a women’s breakfast, and I’ll be darned if I didn’t take that challenge head-on.
So here it is, my recipe for Cherry Vanilla Almond Granola. Be warned, your kitchen will smell amazing!!
- 2c rolled oats (not instant)
- 1/4c dried unsweetened cherries
- 1/2c chopped raw almonds
- 2 1/2T melted coconut oil
- 2T maple syrup
- 1T vanilla extract
- 1T cinnamon
- 1/2t nutmeg
- pinch of salt
Preheat your oven to 325F. In a large mixing bowl pour in all of your dry ingredients and give them a toss. [if you don’t like cinnamon and/or nutmeg, leave them out! It’ll still be delicious]. Next stir in your wet ingredients.
Spread your oats along a greased baking pan (or line your pan with a Slipat or parchment paper) and bake for 15 minutes. Give the granola a little shake and place in the oven for another 10-15 minutes. Keep an eye on this stuff because it can burn, I speak from experience. When finished, set your pan on the counter and let it cool. The granola will get crispier as it cools.
I store my granola in a large glass jar on the counter and it stays fresh and crunchy for weeks! Enjoy it every day with your non-dairy yogurts, sprinkled on oatmeal (or ice cream!) or just enjoy it with ice cold almond milk. However you decide to enjoy it, enjoy!!