Monday, May 6, 2013

Carrot Cake Granola

Carrot Cake Granola
Ah, granola, the breakfast of choice for many fitness fanatics across the country. But is it healthy for you? A quick look at the ingredients on any sort of store bought granola reveals additives, preservatives  and fillers all of which are completely uncessary. Excess sugars, and in many cases trans fats, leave the helpless granola on my black list quite often. Not to mention the fact that a 11.5 oz bag can cost over $6! Who really has the luxury to pay nearly $2 an ounce for some glorified oats? Not this gal. So for all the aforementioned reasons, I prefer to make my own. Honestly, I'm kinda over everything being packaged and presented to me from someone else like it's supposed to be better just because you stamp a big ol' trademark on it. I mean seriously, nothing is simply homemade anymore. Are we that lazy or that busy that we can't be bothered to combine ingredients, grate cheese, or boil water? Maybe you are that busy...or maybe this blog is not for you. Which is fine, to each their own. But have any of you ever tried to make an entire meal from scratch just to see what it would taste like? I'm telling you, packaged and processed with not find their way into your cart thereafter.
*Geez, get off your soapbox already*
Sorry, sometimes I'm just get swept away in the tides of yesteryear when life was a slower, simpler, and a bit more wholesome. Just do me a favor, make one thing--just one--completely from scratch and tell me you don't see and taste a difference. I'm betting you'll feel a difference too, head held high, shoulders back. Because you made it, not Betty Crocker, whoever that lady is.
Carrot Cake Granola
2 cups rolled oats
1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut (flakes would work too)
3/4 cup finely shredded carrots
1/4 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup coconut sugar (or applesauce, brown sugar, agave, etc)
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp nutmeg (less if it's freshly grated)
1/2 raisins or dates
1/2 pecans or walnuts
Combine oats, coconut, and carrots and set aside. In a saucepan, combine the coconut oil, maple syrup, and coconut sugar over medium heat. Once melted, stir in the vanilla and spices. Pour over the dry ingredients and mix until everything is combined.
Spread on a parchment lined backing sheet. Bake at 325 for 30 minutes. Stir and bake another 15 minutes. Be careful to watch for burning.
Once removed from the oven add in the nuts and dried fruit. Store in an airtight container.
That's it. That is what you pay $6 for at the store...
Life is better homemade,

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