Lately I have been attempting to eat less prepackaged food and making more things from scratch. Although I have gotten better with breakfasts and lunches, I’m not doing as well with dinners. But, starting somewhere will only help lead to success! Plus, let’s be honest…full time job, 6+ hours of circus training a week, normal household chores, spending time with puppy and hubby…there isn’t much time for cooking a full blown meal from scratch every night for dinner! Also, see previous sentence, that would explain my very sporadic blog posts lately. Now that I’ve chased that rabbit, back to food.
My weekday breakfasts of late have consisted of a banana, Trader Joe’s Greek yogurt and homemade granola. At $0.99 a package, the hubby and I will make the trek out to Trader Joe’s about once every three weeks (depending on the expiration dates at time of purchase!) and stock up on enough for our weekday breakfasts. My favorite flavors are: strawberry, coconut, vanilla and blueberry. I really liked the mango ones, minus the spotty consistency, most of them tend to be extremely runny, so I have cut that flavor out of the rotation.
Now that I’ve gone on my yogurt rant, I’ll move on to the main course of my blog post, granola!
First you will preheat the oven to 300 degrees and line a cookie sheet (one with edges) with parchment paper.
3 Cups Oats
1.5 Cups Sliced Raw Almonds
1 Cup Coconut Shreds (I used Trader Joe’s Organic Unsweetened Flake Coconut)
2 Tbs Wheat Germ
3/4 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Ground Cinnamon
1/4 Cup Agave Sweetener
1/4 Cup Honey
1/3 Cup Canola Oil
1.5 tsp Vanilla
Mix all the dry ingredients first. Next, you will want to add all the wet ingredients and stir until all the dry ingredients have been coated. Add more or remove some of either of the sweeteners depending on your preferences. More oil will likely help you have more clusters in your granola, but I prefer to keep the oil down to a minimum.
Once everything has been thoroughly mixed pour granola into the pan and spread it out as flat as you can. Bake granola for 20 minutes. You will then remove the granola from the oven, stir it really well, then flatten back out before baking again. Place granola back in the oven for 15-18 minutes (could be more or a lot less depending on your oven). If your oven cooks hot, start watching it at about 10 minutes. Once your granola begins getting toasted (a little darker) it should be removed from the oven (it can overcook in an instant).
My serving sizes allow for about 10 servings with this size recipe (basically two people eating it five times a week), however, my serving sizes may be a bit small (it is the perfect amount for mixing with my TJ’s Greek yogurt mentioned at the beginning of the post). Some weeks I make half batches if only one of us are eating it (so it doesn’t go soft). If you make a half batch, really watch how long you cook it during the second half of baking, it toasts much quicker using a half recipe.
Feel free to play with portions, flavors and add-ins and leave out ingredients if you don’t have them or like them in your granola. You will obviously need to keep oats, oil and salt at the minimum, but everything else is optional in addition and portion. This recipe allows you to make your granola any flavor you prefer!
Do you make your own granola? If so, what are your favorite flavors and add-ins? I have loved this flavor so much I haven’t used too many other additions, but would love to experiment with something that includes chocolate or even raisins (carrot cake granola?!?…maybe! Yum!)