Toasted Maple-Spice Quinoa Granola: An Easy Weekend Project
March 8, 2019
I adore breakfast cereal of all types, and have been known to grab a handful throughout the day as a snack or dessert. I am often quite happy with store-bought granola, but for a true treat, make your own. Not only is it healthier, with less fat and sugar, but it can be tailored to your individual tastes and dietary restrictions. Most important of all, IT TASTES SO MUCH BETTER!
Homemade granola is nothing more than a combination of grains (oats and quinoa) and nuts, mixed with a little fat (coconut oil here), sugar (maple syrup or honey), flavorings (cinnamon, vanilla, nutmeg, and ginger); all spread on a sheet pan and baked until golden. The crisping takes place as the granola cools. The only trick: baking the granola until the oats are golden brown and smell toasted.
Serve your granola over yogurt with your favorite fruit, in a bowl with milk, as a crunchy topping for oatmeal or acai or just eat it by the handful. Change up the basic recipe for endless variations.Enjoy!
Secrets to Success:
For freshest nutmeg flavor, grate your own with a special nutmeg grater.
Use oats labeled gluten-free for the gluten-free version.
Use only real maple syrup.
Be careful when adding the vanilla to the warm oil/syrup mixture as it can bubble.
For extra clumpy granola: reduce the oats by ¼ cup. Press the warm granola into an oiled pyrex dish. When cool, break up with a spoon.
Toasted Maple-Spice Quinoa Granola
Adapted from Half-Baked Harvest
2 ½ cups old fashioned rolled oats
1 cup cooked quinoa
¼ cup each raw pecans, cashews, almonds
1 cup raw pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
1/3 cup raw sesame seeds
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
3 tablespoons coconut oil
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups dried cranberries
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
On the prepared baking sheet, combine the oats, cooked quinoa, nuts, pepitas, and sesame seeds. Toss well.
In a small sauce pan, heat the maple syrup and coconut oil over medium-low heat until the coconut oil is dissolved. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and salt.
Pour the warm mixture over the dry oat mixture and stir to fully combine. Spread the granola out in an even layer.
Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, stirring 2-3 times during the cooking, until the oats smell toasted and are golden brown.
Remove from the oven and let cool completely. The oats will crisp as they cool. Stir in the dried cranberries. Stir in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 month.
Makes 5-6 cups.