Monday, October 07, 2013

Healthy Gluten Free Home-made Granola

I absolutely love granola and never thought it would be so simple to make at home. Here is my simple and easy gluten free recipe for you to make at home, it makes a great addition to any breakfast routine...

Granola is a great way to start your morning and fuel your body with the right nutrition it needs. It is slow-releasing and therefore keeps you fuller for longer meaning you are less likely to snack on bad things as this yummy recipe should fulfil your sweet cravings. 

Store bought granola (unless organic and lists all the ingredients) are often made with unnecessary nasties, refined sugars and usually contain unhealthy fats and oils.
Not all store bought granola is gluten free and if bought in store, always check the packaging label if you are suffering with an intolerance. 

This is definitely a cost effective, delicious recipe for breakfasts, lunches, desserts and treats. 

The ingredients I used are:

  • 100% whole rolled oats (no nasty additives and no microwavable packaged oats). 
  • Organic extra virgin coconut oil.
  • Mixture of seeds and nuts (flaxseeds, sunflower seeds, almonds, peanuts, hazelnuts) 
  • Whole goji berries (powerful little berries), berry and cherry mix (all dried fruits sweetened with pure apple juice and no artificial sweeteners). 
  • Pure English honey (if you are struggling with hayfever, getting locally sourced honey can help as it often contains local pollen). 
  • Organic maple syrup. 
  • Cinnamon. 
  • Organic dessicated coconut. 

This is my mixture of cherries, cranberries, goji berries and raisins. A small amount of these are okay as long as they are unsweetened or sweetened with natural juice e.g apple juice or orange juice. 

Some chopped nuts, sunflower seeds and flaxseeds. These are good for fibre and healthy protein and helps with digestion

I combine the maple syrup (agave would be the best option) and honey together with the cinnamon which I then use to sweeten the oats. 

Coconut oil is classed as a 'superfood' and contains a lot of medium chain triglycerides, these are metabolised differently to other saturated fats. 
Coconut oil can increase energy, contains Lauric Acid which fights bacteria, fungi and viruses. Choose organic, virgin coconut oil and not refined coconut oil. 

In case the above picture is not readable the amounts that I use are as follows:

  • 2 cups of oats 
  • 2-3 tablespoons of coconut oil 
  • 2-3 tablespoons of maple syrup/honey or both combined mixed with cinnamon (my choice). 
  • Half a cup of dried unsweetened fruits. 
  • Half a cup of seeds. 
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract 
  • 3 tablespoons of dessicated coconut (I add the dessicated coconut before I put it in the oven). 

Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl and make sure that all of the coconut oil covers all of the ingredients and that there are no clumps of it left. It should melt with the heat of your hands making it easier to combine with the mixture. 

Spread evenly on a baking tray (I lined mine with greaseproof paper so I didn't have to use any more oils or butter).

I heat my oven to 150°c (300° fahrenheit) and bake for 15-30 minutes (dependent on certain ovens) until golden brown and toasted. 

When the granola is ready, cover and leave aside to cool. Once it has cooled down then you can store it in an airtight container, your granola should then last for around two weeks. 

I have mine with organic natural fat free yoghurt (check the ingredients of the yoghurt as many low fat or even full fat yoghurt are full of unnecessary sugars so if wanting a healthier breakfast go for one that isn't sweetened). 

I always have fresh fruit with mine (usually organic strawberries and grapes - blueberries make a great power breakfast as they are full of antioxidants) and then I put 1 tablespoon of mixed pure Chia seeds on top. You can always add agave nectar on top of it to sweeten if you'd like as it is a great natural sweetener.