Homemade Granola + Other Food-Related Decisions

July 31, 2012 at 11:42 am 1 comment

A few weeks ago, I started making homemade granola – and it has turned out to be a great decision. Since then, I’ve been making it weekly, and really appreciate the natural goodness of the snack.

You see, I always thought granola would be a good snack to have around the house, and especially since I started marathon training, I wanted an extra healthy snack to have on hand. But every time I would look at the ingredient list in the granola options at the store, I would be turned off. It seems like granola would be so healthy, but man it’s loaded with so much sugar and weird chemicals.

So, I started making my own. I started with this base recipe for Maple Almond Granola (which also sounds delicious) from Two Peas and Their Pod (a great blog with lots of healthy snack ideas), but tweaked it a little to get Peanut Butter Granola:

2 cups old-fashioned oats

1 cup chopped almonds

1/3 cup flax seed

1/4 tsp salt

1 tsp (sometimes tbsp 🙂 ) cinnamon

1-2 scoops of peanut butter (usually I do 1, but M wanted it a little more clumpy this week so I tried 2. It worked well!)

2 tbsp canola oil

2 tbsp agave nectar

1 tsp vanilla

1/3 cup dried fruit

Simply mix the dry ingredients (oats through the cinnamon) in a large bowl. Then combine the wet ingredients in a smaller bowl. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ones and mix well. I use the advice of the original recipe and work the ingredients together with my clean hands. It’s much more effective than a spoon or other kitchen instrument. 

Spread the mixture on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Bake 20-30 minutes at 300 degrees, stirring occasionally, until the granola starts to brown. I find 21 minutes to be the sweet spot for my oven. Then stir in the fruit and let it cool completely (if you can resist the urge to try some!).

Seriously, this stuff is g-o-o-d.

Now for the other food-related decisions. First, I finally gave up my individual cups of yogurt. First, it’s not economical or environmental. Second, those flavored yogurts have so much sugar, and – again – other weird chemicals. So I buy one larger tub of plain Greek yogurt and one larger tub of regular yogurt now.

I also refuse to buy bread from the grocery store anymore. I can’t stand reading the label and seeing tons of ingredients that, really, have nothing to do with bread. Even the ones you think are healthier! Oh no. So even though bread from The West Side Market costs $5, I will only buy fresh baked bread. A couple weeks ago, I bought bread there for the first time, and it had 5 ingredients. 5. Five. We ate it fresh for a day or so, and then put it in the freezer. Which means we’re eating less bread actually in general (which is probably good) and when we do, it’s real bread.

So, lots of good decisions happening food-wise lately. I like it.

 

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Entry filed under: Recipes.

The last few days in July It’s August

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. A standing desk experiment. « Undefined Ambition  |  August 16, 2012 at 1:31 pm

    […] is balanced, healthy living. It’s true. I am getting more into eating whole foods (I recently bought more bread from a real bakery!) and I also believe in regular movement (not necessarily exercise, although that is important, […]

    Reply

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