If you are anything like me you have a history of gift-giving that involves a holiday bottle of wine and creating cookie exchange masterpieces. While I enjoy a good glass of wine and sweet cookie treats can work their way into a healthy diet, I end up with unopened bottles and cookies thrown in the trash or marked by freezer burn. This year I decided to develop a practical, simple, gift-giving recipe that says I care about you.
It’s a wonderful way to say Healthy Holidays!
Why it Works:
This homemade granola can be given in portions both large and small. Granola can be munched by itself, used as a yogurt or ice cream topping, and even mixed with a morning cereal or fresh fruit. My homemade granola is loaded with ingredients that say I care about you. It’s packed with heart healthy whole grain ingredients like oats, quinoa, millet, and brown rice. The satisfying fat is from unsaturated canola oil and fiber and protein-containing sources such as seeds and nuts. It contains just the right amount of sweetness from dried fruit, cinnamon, nutmeg, and honey.
An added bonus is that this large batch recipe will be complete in about 30 minutes or less!
Healthy Holidays Granola – this makes a very large batch
- 4 c. old fashioned oats
- 1 c. quinoa flakes
- 1/4 c. millet (I used Bob’s Red Mill, but millet can also be found in bulk food bins)
- 3 tbsp. flour (I used brown rice flour)
- ** about 2-3 cups of your favorite extras (I used 1/2 c. sunflower seeds, 1/2 c. pumpkin seeds, 1/4 c. craisins, 3/4 c. finely chopped dried pineapple, 1/2 c. walnuts)
- 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/2 c. honey
- 1/3 c. canola oil
** Customize your granola with your favorite extras. Great options include shredded coconut, dried cherries or blueberries, raisins, cacao nibs, almonds, flax and hemp seed, and peanuts.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Combine all dry ingredients in a medium to large bowl. In a small saucepan warm the oil and honey until well combined (you can also do this in the microwave). Gradually add and stir the honey and oil mixture with the dry mixture until fully coated.
Spread granola over 2 cookie sheets. Bake the granola at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes or until the top is lightly browned. Let the granola cool before removing from the pan. Use a large spatula to gently break up the mixture of you like your granola to have large pieces.
Store the granola in a large bag or Tupperware. This granola also makes a great gift option. Try placing it in a nice holiday bag or jar and wrap it with a bow!
Makes about 34 – 1/4 c. servings.
Each serving in the recipe I made above is approximately 154 calories, 7.7 grams of fat, 18 grams of carbohydrate, 2.5 grams of fiber, and 4 grams of protein