Sometimes I find that the actual writing of a blog post is the hardest part. This week, that is certainly the case.
I made this granola earlier in the week… I even managed to find the time to take some photos (hooray for nap time!), and got them processed and ready to go.
Since then, however, I’ve barely had a moment to even think about writing a few sentences and sharing the recipe. I’ve got a little girl who doesn’t want to sleep and wants to be held all day (which, while sweet, isn’t very practical when I’m trying to get things done!). And, I’ve also got a few other projects going on this week. It’s all good stuff, but sometimes I find that sitting down to write falls through the cracks.
Of course, in some ways, it’s completely appropriate. Weeks like this are the weeks that granola is perfect for. I can get a batch in the oven in less than 10 minutes… Then, it bakes, mostly unattended, while I can get things done around the house. After an hour or so, I have a nice big jar of granola to snack on and eat for breakfast the rest of the week. I love it with some plain yogurt and fresh fruit. My hubby adds milk to his and eats it like cereal.
And, of course, it’s great by the handful right out of the jar (or directly off of the baking sheet). In fact, this week, I think that’s the way I like it best!
Chocolate Cherry Granola with Coconut and Almonds
Makes about 7 cups
Granola is pretty versatile. As long as you keep the proportions close to the original recipe, you can substitute your favorite ingredients.
For this particular recipe, I have chosen to use brown rice syrup because it’s just a bit stickier than some other sweeteners, and I love big clusters in my granola. Of course, you could also use all honey or some maple syrup, as well.
The ingredients in this recipe are naturally gluten-free. However, if you follow a strict gluten-free diet, you’ll want to make sure you choose ingredients (particularly oats) that are not cross-contaminated with gluten.
- 4 cups rolled oats (gluten-free, if desired)
- 2 cups sliced almonds
- 1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
- ¼ cup flaxseeds
- ¼ cup chia seeds
- ¼ cup raw cacao powder
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ½ cup coconut oil, melted
- ¼ cup brown rice syrup
- ¼ cup raw honey
- 1 ½ cups dried cherries, roughly chopped
Preheat the oven to 300F.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the oats, almonds, coconut, flaxseeds, chia seeds, cacao powder, and salt. Stir until everything is well combined.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the melted coconut oil, brown rice syrup, and honey. Pour the mixture over the dry ingredients in the mixing bowl. Fold with a spatula until all of the granola is evenly coated with the sticky liquid.
Transfer the granola to a baking sheet (or a roasting pan), and bake for 60 minutes, stirring twice. Allow the granola to cool on the pan, then stir in the cherries before storing in an airtight container.