Tag Archives: Oats

Big Batch Granola with Almonds, Pecans & Pepitas

a big batch of granola, jarred up and ready for gifting!

a big batch of granola, jarred up and ready for gifting!

Oh granola, how I love thee, let me count the ways…I have loved granola for as long as I can remember.  For years, my go to breakfast was a bowl of plain yogurt with fresh berries and a spoonful or two of my favorite granola. Nowadays, I don’t eat much yogurt, but I haven’t given up on granola and have found so many other delicious ways to enjoy it.  I’ve replaced the yogurt in my granola bowl to fresh berries or sliced banana topped with granola and my homemade coconut milk or almond milk, delicious!  Granola can be mixed into pancake batter for some extra flavor and texture, top off a chia cup or even a bowl of ice cream, or just eat it straight out of the jar as a healthy snack. 

 

delicious baked granola straight out of the pan

delicious baked granola straight out of the pan

About 10-12 years ago, I found a recipe for granola and started making my own.  My family loved it.  As I continued making batch after batch of granola over the years, of course I started tweaking the recipe and have created a few different versions that I really like (for a nice twist try my pumpkin pecan granola).  This one is close to my original, but with a few really great updates.  For one, I’ve figured out some great tips on how to get granola into nice size clusters, all the better for snacking on straight out of the jar. 

Tips for making granola clusters:

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Coconut Almond Blueberry Scones – vegan & gluten free

gluten free and vegan! scones bursting with juicy blueberries and dusted with coconut and almonds, yum!

gluten free and vegan! scones bursting with juicy blueberries and dusted with coconut and almonds, yum!

Hallallujah!  The birds in my head are singing and I’m doing a happy dance around my kitchen for I have finally discovered the magic of baking a GOOD gluten free scone. Coconut Almond Blueberry Scones to be exact and not only are they gluten free, but vegan too!!! 

Just baked and oozing blueberries...

Just baked and oozing blueberries…

This simple dough is made from coconut flour (or leftover coconut pulp!) and oats, studded with blueberries and almonds and rolled in a few extra oats, flaked coconut, raw sugar and almonds just for fun and a little extra yum. 

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Peanut Butter & Berry Chia Cups

Peanut butter, berries & chia breakfast cups, oh my!

Peanut butter, berries & chia breakfast cups, oh my!

Yum, peanut butter & berries, is there anything better? Well, yeah, maybe, but this combo is still one of my classic favorites.  This recipe is an easy make ahead breakfast or snack, with a little pre-planning, you can have a delicious and satisfying light meal ready to grab and go for those mornings or afternoons when you just have no time to prep. 

 

PB & Berry Chia Cup topped with Berry Jam

PB & Berry Chia Cup topped with Berry Jam

I have been a fan of the mighty chia seed for some time now and enjoy them almost daily.  I love chia seeds stirred into my yogurt, mixed into a bowl of berries and in quick breads and muffins like my Lemon Chia Tea Cake. What I have not been a fan of, not even willing or interested in trying…is one of the many recipes for chia puddings flooding the blogosphere and pinterest.  Why?  I don’t know, just the thought of gelatinized goo just never appealed, even though I know one of chia seeds greatest features is that they DO gel up, but for some reason, I really, really like the little crunchy bite of chia seeds before they get all wet and gooey.  That was, until a few months ago when Dana at the Minimilast Baker posted her Peanut Butter & Blueberry Chia Puddings and oh my, they looked so delicious I just wanted to dive into my computer screen and eat one immediately! 

Chia Cups topped with berries, peanut butter and berry compote

Chia Cups topped with berries, peanut butter and berry compote

So by the next day, I dove right into my kitchen and made up my own version and then I made them 3 more times in the next couple of weeks and then made some more, because they were that good!  Now, of course I did change up Dana’s recipe just a bit to suit my own tastes.  I used both homemade almond and coconut milks, since I’ve been making those for several months now with great delight (see tips for making your own at the end of the recipe!).  I also prefer raspberries and blackberries with peanut butter to Dana’s blueberries and…since I was new to the whole gelling chia world I decided to use a tad less chia seeds in my cups then the original just to get my feet wet, but I think my combo here is just perfect and I hope you agree! 

peanut butter and berry chia cup topped with a blackberry

peanut butter and berry chia cup topped with a blackberry

And one more note of encouragement to any of you out there who have not yet discovered all the wonders of chia seeds…even my daughter Skyler, who has had for a long time a strange “fear” of chia seeds, LOVES these chia cups!  So go ahead, give it a try, they are nutritious and delicious…

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Pumpkin Pecan Granola

Pumpkin Pecan Granola

I love granola and although I often buy my favorite organic pumpkin seed granola, I also love to make my own.  It makes a fantastic homemade gourmet hostess gift, giving your friends or family a delicious, easy and healthy breakfast for the day after the glutinous decadence of a holiday dinner.  

pumpkin pecan granola!

pumpkin pecan granola!

Granola oftentimes gets a bad rap as being unhealthy, as a lot of commercial brands add in way too much sugar, additional oils and overly processed ingredients, but when you make your own you have complete control and therefore can create a delicious and healthy version all your own!  

pumpkin pecan granola with banana and peanut butter, yum!

pumpkin pecan granola with banana and peanut butter, yum!

 I have been making my own granola for years now using a much loved recipe I stumbled upon, but more recently I’ve been changing it up and creating some of my own flavor combinations and since it’s pumpkin season, I thought why not add a little to the mix.  I combine pumpkin puree and maple syrup –  yum – add to that raw pumpkin seeds (just to keep the theme going, plus they’re yummy and so healthy!) and some ground flax and
hemp seeds pumpkin pecan granola dry mixfor good measure and finally pecans, shredded coconut and of course cinnamon, which all go so perfectly with the flavors of pumpkin.

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Chocolate Chip Zucchini Mini Muffins

Zucchini Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins
It’s back to school time, but summer’s not over yet and there’s still plenty of summer squash available at the market.  These chocolate chip zucchini mini muffins are packed with good for you oats, yogurt and zucchini, but enough chocolate to satisfy and fool the kids into happily eating their veggies.  They make a perfect breakfast treat, lunch box snack or afternoon pick me up. 6-year old veggie hater approved and adults love them too! Chocolate Chip Zucchini Mini Muffins stacked up

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