Friday, July 27, 2012

Homemade granola {gluten free}

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Granola is one of my favorite foods.  I love granola with fresh fruit and some greek yogurt, and Hubby likes to top his smoothies with granola for a crunchy post-workout snack.  We've been buying tons of granola and the other day I realized that we could - and should - be making this at home.



Store bought granola can be loaded with oils, flavorings and preservatives, all of which I'd rather not indulge in.  Anything made at home gives you the ability to control what goes into your food.  In the case of this granola I used healthy coconut oil instead of vegetable or canola oil.

Coconut oil is something I'm only beginning to experiment with.  It is pretty easily found in most grocery stores - I get it at Trader Joe's.  It is high in saturated fat (hold on, don't freak out yet!) however the saturated fat in coconut oil is different from other oils in that it does not increase LDL levels.  Coconut oil has been found to be useful in losing weight, and increases metabolism by reducing stress on the pancreas.  It also strengthens the immune system and promotes healthy digestion.  Coconut oil is solid at room temperature, so must be melted before being added to most recipes.



When it comes to granola, you can customize with whatever ingredients you like.  I added in ground flax seeds and raw almonds.  You could also toss in some dried fruit or shredded coconut.  I think I'll make this a fall treat next time and use some pumpkin pie spice in place of the cinnamon.  Yum!

Homemade Granola
2 c rolled oats (make sure they are gluten free if that is a concern)
1 tbsp cinnamon (scant)
Pinch of salt
1 tbsp coconut oil, melted
1/3 c honey
1/2 c raw sliced almonds
1/3 c ground flax seeds

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

In a medium bowl, stir together oats, cinnamon and salt.  Add in coconut oil and honey, stirring until thoroughly combined.  Spread mixture on a parchment lined baking sheet.  Bake 30-45 minutes, stirring occasionally.  (If you wanted the nuts toasted, add during the last 5-10 minutes and make sure to stir frequently to prevent them from burning.)  The longer the granola cooks, the crunchier it will be.  Cool completely before adding almonds (unless toasting) and flax seed.  Store in an airtight container.


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3 comments:

  1. Versatility is what I love best about granola. It is like a watch with a whole lot of straps you can mix and match with depending on your mood or your dress. Mornings are made to be bright and sunny and fun...I love the mix and match and experiment with my granola for breakfast. Having homemade granola is a grander treat though, Thanks for sharing.
    Anyways, your phenomenal photos have caught our attention, we have been in the lookout for unique and interesting bloggers since we have launched our food photo gallery http://www.yumgoggle.com/gallery/ This will allow you to showcase all your great work and share it with our visitors. We’d be proud to have your work as part of our growing collection to continue to have a larger reach and further inspire all fellow food lovers out there!

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    Replies
    1. @Yumgoggle: Thank you so much for your sweet comments! You are too kind. I'm glad you appreciate the versatility of granola as much as I do. :)
      I would love to be a part of your gallery and I'm so flattered that you have extended an invitation to me. I can't wait to check out your site and participate!

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