You know what sucks about store bought granolas? They're usually pretty expensive and they're usually pretty unhealthy. Oil, sugar, chocolate, etc.. all delicious things, but not when you inadvertently load your breakfast down with them. When I eat dessert, I like to be eating dessert. (And I love to be eating dessert.)
So, the solution? Make your own. It's less expensive (although the cost will be more up front depending on what's hanging around in your pantry, but once you have the basics you can make it on the cheap.). You know what your getting into. It looks more rustic; I think it's prettier. You can control your ingredients. You like walnuts? You like almonds? Add 'em! Can't stand sunflower seeds? Forget 'em! (Although, I think you're nuts if you can't stand sunflower seeds. Add yourself to your granola.)
It will seem awkward at first, but like anything once you get the hang of it you can pretty much play around with the proportions of your add ins. It's easy once you do it a few times.
Not convinced yet? Homemade granola also makes a great holiday or hostess gift. On the cheap. I think putting a little love into something is way more valuable anyway. (Just a side note, booze is also a wonderful holiday/hostess gift. Booze and granola is even better. Hmmm homemade gift basket idea?)
|Packaging is everything!|
Try this one below. It's healthiest version I've ever come up with, but it tastes delicious. It's not super sweet, but nothing you're eating in the AM should be. I like a crunchy granola, which this is. I used steel cut oats, because I just bought them and I'm a little obsessed at this very moment, real pumpkin, walnuts and a variety of seeds (pumpkin seeds, of course) and no oil. Then, try this Ginger Spice Granola.
Pumpkin Pie Granola
1 c steel cut oats
1/2 c quick cook oats
1/2 c walnuts, chopped
1/4 c pumpkin seeds
1/4 c sunflower seeds
1/4 tsp kosher salt
3/4 c pureed pumpkin
2 tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp agave syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp cardamom
1/4 tsp allspice
1/4 c raisins (optional)
Preheat oven to 300.
In a large bowl, combine steel cut oats, quick cook oats, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds and kosher salt. Stir until mixed well. Set aside.
In a small saucepan, heat pumpkin, maple syrup, agave syrup, and vanilla over low heat for 2-3 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds. Add cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom, and allspice and stir to blend.
Add pumpkin mixture to bowl of oats, nuts and seeds and stir to coat.
Spread out granola mixture on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake for 35-40 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.
Once granola is toasted, allow to cool. Then add raisins and toss to combine. Store in an airtight container.
|Oh hey, random can of pumpkin...|