Friday, February 25, 2011

Pumpkin Spice Granola

Yesterday, I told you that my place smelled like pumpkin and spices. Today, that amazing smell is gone. I am bummed, but I've accepted it mainly because I am now enjoying the TASTE of pumpkin and spices. A far better option, at least in my opinion. And no, I didn't make a pumpkin pie. Or pumpkin bars, because we all know those are strictly for November birthdays. I did, however, make an excellent batch of Pumpkin Spice granola:

I've been craving granola lately. Don't get me wrong, I am still mildly obsessed with oatmeal. But sometimes a girl wants a cold and crunchy bowl of goodness at the start of her day. Although this particular girl gets nervous in the granola aisle at the supermarket. So many options, so many calories if you buy the wrong bag. And really, it's just as easy to make your own. Seriously, it took me five minutes to mix up the ingredients. Longer to bake it, but it's not like you have to sit there and watch the oats get crunchy. The bowl above is dry, but it held up perfectly well when I added a touch of skim.

I should have added some 'nana slices. A single banana in a bowl of cereal is fairly deluxe in every case. Next time. The recipe:

Pumpkin Spice Granola
5 cups oats
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1/4 cup applesauce
1/4 cup honey
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup sunflower seeds

Preheat oven to 325F. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper if you have it, otherwise any non-stick cookie sheet'll do. Mix the oats and spices in a large bowl and set aside. In another bowl, combine the brown sugar through vanilla extract. Add to the bowl of dry ingredients, mixing until thoroughly combined. Spread the resulting concoction across the cookie sheet, then bake for 20 minutes. Stir, then bake for another 10 minutes or so. Or until it looks nice and crisp. (Warning! This stuff burns easily.) When finished, mix in the cranberries and sunflower seeds. Let the mixture cool completely before storing it in an airtight container. (Try not to munch TOO much while it's cooling.)

While the honey and brown sugar add quite a bit of sweetness, you can control additional sugar by purchasing applesauce of the natural variety. While there will be some sugar in it, it won't be added sugar. Just, well...natural sugar. And don't limit yourself to cranberries and sunflower seeds. I imagine toasted almonds would be quite delicious. Maybe even pumpkin seeds, too.

Speaking of almonds, I found myself bloggingg at a Starbucks yesterday. One coffee and a small bag of toasted almonds later, this post was complete.

Question: What store-bought granola brand is your favorite? If you make your own, what is your favorite mix-in?

1 comment:

Post a Comment


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...