Choc Granola Goodness
This recipe is super simple, quick to prepare, and will last you weeks. Taking some time out on a Sunday afternoon to make this will provide you with a huge stash of grab and go goodness to serve your high output lifestyle and nutrient demands. Plus, its tasty (and nearly addictive)..
Now, I’m certainly not the culinary whizz that my wife is, but I do come up with a few winners from time to time (or so I think anyway) 🙂
Most of the time, I’m a pretty simple eater and my food creations are really basic compared to Kate’s. She uses all the right ingredients, follows the sometimes time-consuming preparations and the result is always full-flavoured and delicious. And fortunately I am blessed to enjoy the fruits of her labour! My kitchen efforts on the other hand are quick, easy and normally to suit a nutritional need first and foremost.
Sometimes though, if I get really excited by a particular food or dish, I may go a little overboard.. This was definitely the case with the Choc Granola.
This granola however, wasn’t my first attempt at this delicious and now trending delight. A bit of trial and error in previous attempts with different ingredients and processes led to getting everything to combine well and taste great. It’s my second flavour, but definitely my favourite. I mean, its chocolate, of course it’s going to be my favourite!
So whats so great about granola anyway?
Typically granola is a breakfast food that is a much healthier alternative to standard breakfast boxed cereal. Breakfast cereals are typically super processed, carb loaded, refined sugar rich, high in under-prepared grains, contain preservatives, additives etc, and are generally devoid of absorbable nutrients. Granola on the other hand, is usually made up of real food ingredients combined with some simple fats and a sweetener, then baked (or sometimes and in my case, dehydrated).
The added benefit to granola is that it can be used not just as a delicious breakfast, but in desserts, as a snack, and even formed into “granola bars”. If you are doing all of these, it’s safe to say you are a certified addict!
Granola is also commonly found neatly dispersed over an acai bowl at your local healthy cafe (but they never seem to use enough)..
As with all things, “oils aint oils” and there are varying levels of quality found in commercially available granola products. Some supermarket ones are cheap and nasty, and the health food store varieties can be better in quality but can get quite pricey (I have seen some that are over $50 a kilo)! Best bet is to make it simply from home.
After looking at a bunch of the store bought products and reading many labels, I was convinced that I could form a healthier recipe that had all the taste and nutrients I wanted, but without any nasties or over the top expense.
But before I share this recipe with you, know that I have gone the extra mile in terms of quality, nutrient density and digestive absorbability. These are always considerations in the Lifestyle Artists kitchen as we consciously think about how our food can nourish or burden, and its environmental impact. I will outline some of these ideas below and if you want to give this a go, do the best with what you have and enjoy the process (and the taste tests)!
Ok, if we were to classify our Choc Granola, it would be:
Raw: Not baked, but dehydrated at no higher than 45 degrees (therefore retaining maximum enzyme and nutrient content)
Grain-free: no grains used which is great for those avoiding them, including paleo eaters.
Organic: free from any pesticides and other potentially harmful “cide’s”. Grown old school.
Refined sweetener free: Only natural and un-adulturated sweeteners used (sultanas, dates and raw honey)
Gluten free: great for coeliacs or people avoiding gluten for inflammation reasons
Activated: the nuts and seeds used are soaked to release phytic acids and other anti-nutrients, thus making them better for the gut and for digestion.
Preservative/additive free: Nothing but ingredients in their natural state.
Vegetarian: Just plants here. *For a vegan option, swap out the honey for coconut sugar, more dates, maple syrup etc.
Please note: the great thing about granola is you can do it many ways. You can substitute ingredients depending on what you have in the pantry and also how you prepare it. If you don’t have a dehydrator (love our Excaliber by the way), you can use your oven at the lowest temperature. A lot of ovens do go down to 50 degrees Celsius. It doesn’t work as well or as accurately, however like I said before, do the best with what you have and just ensure that the it turns out nice and dry (you don’t want your beautiful batch struck down with mold and end up in the compost)!
Alright, on to the recipe!
Choc Granola Goodness
- 1 cup Hemp seeds
- 1 cup Brazil nuts
- 1 cup Buckwheat
- 1 cup Sultanas
- 1 cup Coconut flakes
- 1 cup Cashews or Walnuts
- 2 cups Pepitas
- 2 cups Sunflower seeds
- 1/3 cup Cacao powder
- 2 Tbls Chia seeds
- 1 tsp Vanilla powder
- Big pinch of Himalayan salt
- 1/3 cup Coconut oil
- 1/3 cup Raw Honey (we love using Bee One Third neighborhood honey)
- 5 Medjool Dates
- some warm filtered water
Chop or blitz up your larger nuts like the brazils and cashews just so they are halved or in smaller pieces and combine with the rest of the Dry ingredients.
Remove the seeds from the medjool dates and chop into smaller amounts. Add these to a bowl with some warm water to soften them for 5 minutes. Combine the dates with the other wet ingredients and blend or mix to combine (I have tried a food processor, blender, and even a mortar and pestle – all work fine).
Add the wet ingredients to the dry ones and mix until combined.
Spoon mixture onto baking paper lined trays and dehydrate for 12+ hours at 45 degrees or until dry. (If using an oven on low heat, just check it and turn periodically and when dry, it is done).
Remove from the dehydrator, allow to cool, then store in an airtight container.
Serve with yogurt, fruit, on top of smoothies, as a trail mix with other nuts and dried fruit, with ice cream, the list goes on..!
We would love to see your granola creations and hear all about it, so remember to tag us on instagram/facebook and use the hashtag #chocgranolagoodness