I was standing in the Whole Foods cereal/granola aisle reading the ingredients of nearly every “healthy” granola on the shelves… and then I gave up. They weren’t healthy, but they were marketed as healthy with descriptions such as “gluten-free”, “organic”, “all natural”, and so on.
Here’s the thing. Whether it’s granola or any other processed food, don’t be deceived by the label. Instead read the ingredients. It could have organic chocolate, organic sugar, organic anything, but that doesn’t make it healthy. When you’re buying a pre-made granola, look for the following:
- Less than 8 ingredients
- Be able to read everything and know what it is
- Avoid sugars: including dried cane syrup, evaporated cane syrup, agave nectar, brown rice sugar, corn syrup, coconut sugar, malt, maltodextrin, or any sort of sucrose or fructose.
Hence, I did what I always do: decided to make my own, and it was delicious.
What you need:
- 3/4 cup raw cashews
- 1/2 cup walnuts (I used red walnuts from Trader Joes because I had them around, but you can use any walnuts)
- 1/2 cup raw unsalted pumpkin seeds
- 3/4 cup dried pineapple (cut into small pieces- if you have trouble cutting it, then soak it in water for a few minutes first)
- 8 Medjool dates
- 1/2 cup tahini
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 cups oats
- 3/4 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
- 1/3 cup hemp hearts
- 1/2 cup sliced raw almonds
- 1 tsp cardamom (but if you don’t like the taste of cardamom- you can use cinnamon, both work!)
What to do:
- Preheat oven to 300
- Put the cashews, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, and pineapple in a food processor and pulse 5-10 times to break down the bigger pieces
- Set that mixture aside in a large mixing bowl
- Blend the dates, tahini, and water in the food processor until it becomes a paste.
- Add the shredded oats, coconut, hemp hearts, almonds, and caradom to the nut mixture and stir until mixed evenly.
- Add the tahini/date mixture to the main nut mixture and mix well, until everything is coated.
- Line a cookie tray with parchment paper and press the mixture onto the tray. Trick: if you wet your hands, it’s easier to press the mixture down on the tray.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes. Check it every 10 or so minutes and use a spatula to move the mixture around so it bakes evenly.
- Cool completely and put it in an airtight container in the fridge.
- Enjoy it as a cereal with almond or coconut milk and some fresh fruit or on top of some greek yogurt (if you don’t eat vegan) with berries.