So I told you I wanted to get a lil bit more active in posting recipes because I LOVE cooking and baking and this is a health and nutrition blog after all. So here comes another recipe, not really mine, but rather one that was modified from a recipe by Heather over at Heather’s Creative Concoctions. I have wanted to make homemade granola for a while now, despite not really ever eating it in my life, as I thought it would be cool as an oatmeal topper like I have seen in various instagram pics. So the other day I finally decided that I had a big bag of old fashioned rolled oats wasn’t going to use itself up so I was gunna to make some healthy granola that I could use to top my pre-legday (ie. bring me allll the carbs!) proatmeal.
Of course I am ME soo I had to make a granola that would fit MY macros. Therefore, unlike many granola’s you would find on the shelf at a grocery store, my homemade version would have to have:
- NO added sugar (this also means honey, syrup and other sticky binders)
- NO excessive use of fats and oils
- NO crazy high amount of carbohydrates
- SOME protein
- A YUMMY taste
So that is a pretty long list especially for someone who has no experience making granola. Hmmm..
So I went out in search of inspiration…and how-to’s…for my perfect granola. After paroozing pinterest I began to get a lil frustrated as all of the ‘healthy’ recipes still had a fairly large use of honey or maple syrup to keep the oat clusters together. Please understand that I know these are natural sugars and I have nothing against those that use them. Personally, I choose not to use them because, just like regular table sugar, natural sugars spike your insulin levels all the same. To your body, sugar is sugar no matter where it comes from. So for me, extra unneeded sugar just doesn’t fit into my goals as of now. Plus, I really don’t need the excessive sweetness as I don’t have much of a sweet tooth (….other than ice cream..mmmmm…). Annnyways, I finally started to see some people using unsweetened apple sauce to bind and sweeten their granola and I thought the idea of using fruit purees was quite interesting. I was also reminded that peanut butter can really be incorporated into anything beautifully and decided that my granola HAD TO HAVE peanut butta somewhere in the mix.
All of this then led me to Heather’s site where she posted a recipe for her peanut butter granola. This recipe combined the flavours of peanut butter with a banana for binding power and sweetness. OMG this was perfect as I’m sure you all know I LEEERRVVE all things banana and peanut butta. If you are interested, here is her original recipe:
Heather’s Super Crunchy Banana Peanut Butter Granola
2 cups rolled oats
1/4 peanut flour or PB2 prepared
1/2 cup water
up to 1/4 cup sugar free maple syrup- depending on your taste
2 tsp cinnamon
*optional add ins, 1/4 cup raisins, 1/4 cup sunflower seeds, 1/4 cup dark chocolate chips
-Preheat oven to 350 degrees
– Blend everything but the oats. Toss mixture and the oats. Lay on baking sheet- don’t spread it thin leave it chunky for the super crunch factor.
-Bake 15-20 minutes till just starting to brown- make sure to turn it at least once.
Now despite her granola being fabulous all on its own, because I am who I am, I had to modify it to fit my own needs. So here was my version:
Makes 16 servings (2 tbsp each)
2 cups rolled oats
2 tbsp Nuttzo (or other chunky nut butter)
1/4 peanut flour
1/2 cup water
2 tsp cinnamon
Combine the peanut flour, banana, water, and cinnamon in a blender and blend until smooth. Mix in the Nuttzo (or other nut butter) and then combine with the oats. Then simply follow the same directions as Heather’s version.
Nutritional Information (per serving or 2 tbsp)
58 calories, 8g carbs, 2g fat, 3g protein, 1g sugar and 2g sodium
I chose to make it suuuuper simple as I wanted to see how it would work out first before going crazy. I did however add in some Nuttzo as I thought it would bring some more nutty flavour and some chunks of nuts. Unfortunately I think I was a lil too stingy so the taste didn’t really show up the way I had envisioned. So feel free to add some more if you really want a strong nut flavour! Overall, I was quite pleased with the outcome! The peanut flour really did wonders for a ‘glue’ and a light flavouring of peanut. My boyfriend tried some and liked it despite him saying it wasn’t that sweet compared to normal granola. If you do want it sweeter I would suggest adding in some sweetener, either stevia based for sugar free (or sf maple syrup as Heather suggested if your stomach can handle the artificial sweeteners) or a form of natural sugar (liquid form). One thing I did notice was that some of my clusters were a lil softer but that was probably because I took it out a lil too early for fear that some of the isolated pieces would burn. Next time I will make sure I spread it out more evenly so I can get that beautiful super crunchy texture Heather was speaking of!
Also, as Heather mentioned, feel free to throw in some yummy add-ins:
- Nuts of any kind (peanuts, cashews, etc)
- Dried Fruits
- Flavour Extracts (maple would be fab!)
- Cocoa nibs or regular ol’ chocolate chips
- Other grains (could throw in quinoa, millet puffs, etc)
So here it is, my beautiful and healthy granola.