Monday, June 18, 2012

Homemade Maple Granola

Brad and I used to be big cereal eaters until we learned that it's actually not so good for you.  As an adult I avoided high sugar cereals, choosing boxes that boasted of whole grains and high fibre.  I think pretty well everyone knows that Lucky Charms isn't the best option, but it turns out that even the "healthy" cereals like Vector or Special K, aren't good options either.  Commercial cereals are put through high heat, high pressure processes which strip the grains of most nutritional value they had.  It also destroys the structure of the amino acids which leaves them potentially harmful to our bodies.  Even the fortified cereals are pretty well useless, nutritionally speaking, because the vitamins added are man made.  The body treats many of these odd "vitamins" as toxins and eliminates them as quickly as possible.

Making granola is something that I have been wanting to do for a long time ever since I learned all this.  We've been buying muesli in place of cereal, but I knew it had to be overpriced compared to making it at home.  I always had it in my head that making granola would be some long, complicated process, so I put it off.  Well, I finally did it, and it was so easy!  This recipe has my own alterations from a recipe at Earthbound Farm's website.  You can add or remove any grains, seeds, nuts, and dried fruit as you like.

The Wife Life Maple Granola
-4 1/2 c steel cut oats (not quick cook)
-3/4 c raw sunflower seeds
-1 1/2 c raw almonds (coarsely chop)
-1/4 c flax seeds
-1/4 c hemp seeds
-2 tbsp ground cinnamon
-1 c maple agave syrup
-1/4 c honey
-1/3 c extra virgin olive oil
-1 c raisins

1. Preheat oven to 325 F.
2. Place oats, sunflower seeds, almonds, flax seeds, hemp seeds, and cinnamon in a large bowl.  Stir.
3. Add syrup and oil.  Stir until moistened.
5. Spread mixture on a rimmed baking sheet.
6. Bake for about 25 min until begins to brown.  Take out and stir.
7. Bake another 15 to 20 minutes until golden brown and dry.  Take out and stir.
8. Put the baking sheet on a cooling rack.  Add the raisins and stir.  Allow to cool.

We both really like this granola. We eat it just with milk (rice milk) in place of cereal for breakfast.  It's cheaper than buying muesli or granola in the store, and tastes way better than the store bought stuff too.  This size recipe lasted us about a month eating it 5 days a week each.  It's so simple to replace different seeds, nuts, etc to change it up sometimes too.  It would also be good served as a topping on different foods such as yogurt.

Have you made your own granola?  What do you eat for a healthy breakfast?


  1. Sounds yummy! John & I got rid of cereal a while back too. We've actually eliminated almost all grains from our diet. Whole grain rice, quinoa, and steel cut oats are about the only things we still eat. And Ezekial bread once in a while. We no longer buy any grain flours, cereals, pasta or rice - well very, very rarely.

    Your granola recipe is pretty similar to mine except I haven't tried it with sunflower seeds before. I'm going to try that next time! I add shredded coconut and conconut oil to mine though which is alos really good. And I cut out all the sugars except the little bit of honey. I don't usually add dried fruit - again because of the sugar content - but instead I add berries or fresh fruit when I eat it. I LOVE it with a dollop of greek yogurt. I am thinking you don't eat dairy though?

    Thanks for sharing your recipe :-)


  2. We eat homemade cereal in the winter. I am saving this recipe for then. In the summer we eat fruit because it is to hot to eat other foods.
    thank you.

  3. Hi Grace! I have been making granola for years! I love chopped pecans and sesame seeds in mine, too. Last year I discovered making it with coconut oil and shredded coconut, and I add a splash of vanilla to the honey/oil mixture before stirring it into the rest. SO GOOD. If only I could convince Alena that it's good :-)

    Take care!

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