Hiya! Happy Friday! How is everyone? This week, my little guy wanted to “bake” with mama. Instead of cookies, we made a batch of granola and then started playing around with a recipe for a grain free version that Alan could snack on. A year or so ago we started making our own granola. Primarily because I have never found any store bought brands that I’m just gaga over. And equally important, they ALL have a BOATLOAD of sugar. I know I preach this over and over, but I just don’t like giving my kid a bunch of sugar. I’m not even being mean-mom about it. It turns my cherubic, lovable tiny human into a red faced, melting, screaming tantrum on wheels. Every. Single. Time. This is not only about his overall health; this is about my sanity, people. This grain free granola business is a win-win-win. First it’s super simple and a great project to enjoy with your tiny humans, it is also much lower in carbs and sugar than any store bought brand and finally, holy smokes is it ever good! As in so addictive, I accused Alan of eating it all and then realized I must have snuck my hand in the jar a few more times than I thought. Oops. Time to make another batch of this no grain granola! Not a terrible thing because, bonus points- your kitchen will smell like a world class bakery.
We’re keeping the sugar at a minimum. It is barely weighted on the sweet side; we’ve almost got a sweet salty thing going on here. Instead of white or brown sugar, we’re using coconut sugar, which, according to the experts is better for you as it it falls differently on the glycemic index. I am only just starting to learn about the glycemic index, but the lower the number, the more complex the sugar and the longer it takes your body to break it down, thus making it easier for your body to regulate your blood sugar. For example, glucose (plain old, white table sugar) has a Glycemic Index (GI) of 100 while coconut sugar as well as the maple syrup we use in our no grain granola has a GI of only 50. Agave – which I love, but for some reason always forget about, only has a GI of 15! So, watch for us playing around with more agave! Here is a link to a Glycemic Index cheat sheet.
Anyone super knowledgable on the Glycemic Index? Please drop a comment here on the blog and educate us!
The deep flavors of the coconut sugar, the gorgeous shaved coconut, the maple syrup, the Mexican vanilla and just a hint of salt make for a seriously addictive snack that is actually good for you! I’ve said it before here, and here, and I’ll say it again. Do. Not. Use. Imitation. Vanilla. Get yourself a bottle of the good stuff. You deserve it. Plus, holiday baking is right around the corner. This is the vanilla I use and love since I’ve finally used up everything I’ve hand carried back from the Caribbean. If I’m out of vanilla-clearly, I need another vacation here, STAT! Thought- if I turn this blog into some kind of side business and travel to the Caribbean (solely on a vanilla sourcing excursion, mind you) can I write off my vacation….??? Hmmmm….. Something to ponder. Any CPAs out there….? I digress. Back to our no grain granola.
Feel free to add in your favorite dried fruit, mine is dried blueberries or cranberries. And mini chocolate chips are pretty great too for a late night snack.
If carbs are not an issue, here is our original granola recipe with oats. It’s pretty amazing in its own right. Make some of either this weekend and you’ve got breakfast, snacks and dessert for the week. It sure kills a late night sugar craving (especially with the mini chocolate chips) Hey, I figure it’s better than a cookie. Enjoy your no grain granola, folks! Please leave any comments below and let us know what you would like to see here this fall. More gluten free baking? Thanksgiving recipes? Whaduhyouwant? Thanks for being here and please share with your peeps. Happy Cooking! xo-Amanda
No Grain Granola
- 1 Cup Blanched, Sliced Almonds
- 1 Cup Chopped Walnuts
- 1/2 Cup Chopped Pecans
- 1/2 Cup Chopped Cashews
- 1 Cup Shaved Coconut
- 2 Tablespoons Grapeseed or vegetable oil
- 3 Tablespoons Coconut Sugar
- 2 Tablespoons Maple Syrup
- 1 Teaspoon Vanilla
- 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
- Preheat oven to 250 degrees F
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper
- Combine almonds, walnuts, pecans, cashews and coconut in a large bowl
- In a small bowl, combine the oil, coconut sugar, maple syrup, vanilla and salt
- Pour sugar mixture over the dry ingredients and stir well until everything is evenly coated.
- Pour mixture out onto the baking sheet and spread into an even layer
- Bake at 250 for 50 minutes.
- Let cool and enjoy!