Last Tuesday, I was going to Zumba with my friends Anna and Jess and wanted a healthy snack for after my workout. I looked through my cabinets and realized that I had the makings for homemade granola "bars".
It's been a long time since I liked one of my concoctions this much! This granola is seriously amazing!
* 1 1/2 cups raw almonds
*1/2 cup pistachios
* 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
* 3/4 cup natural peanut butter
* 1/2 cup local honey (or store-bought)
* 1/2 cup dried cranberries
* 1/4 cup raisins
* 1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
Chop up almonds and pistachios. I used a Ninja Chopper.
Mix together all ingredients thoroughly in a large mixing bowl. Make sure that the honey and peanut butter are mixed in really well.
Spray a cookie sheet lightly with cooking spray, or grease it lightly with the cooking oil of your choice. Spread the mixture evenly on the cookie sheet (about 1/2 inch to an inch thick).
Place on middle oven rack and let bake for approximately 20 minutes. However, watch it very closely, as it is easy to burn.
The mixture is done baking when it is toasty and golden, and not runny in the middle of the pan.
Let the granola sit out to cool (about 30 minutes). After that, cut the granola with a knife into bar-sized pieces. Then, place the pan of granola in the refrigerator for about an hour.
When the hour is up, your granola is ready.
I cannot promise that these won't fall apart. Mine did not stay in bar-form, but I didn't care since it tasted so fantastic!
This granola made a pretty big portion. I had it four different mornings for breakfast (mixed in with vanilla Greek yogurt, which was super yummy and I highly recommend it!), I shared it with people at bible study, and me, Anna and Jess had some the night I made it. It keeps very well in the refrigerator and will stay good for about a week and a half.
This is not at all a low fat recipe, but it is a very healthy recipe. Nuts (and nut butters) have good fats that your body needs, are high in protein, plus have nutrients that help with anxiety and depression. Honey (if it is local/not processed) helps tremendously with allergies. Cranberries and raisins help with digestion, along with a fairly long list of other things. And chocolate is just yummy and fine in moderation ;)
I hope that you will try this recipe and that you enjoy it. Even though the prep time is a little long (just under two hours total), it is well worth it to have a week's worth of yummy, healthy granola at your fingertips :)