Grain + sugar free cashew coconut granola
HI FRIENDS! I feel like it’s been a while. I was in NYC last week, which was absolutely fantastic, but I feel like I haven’t been around here in ages. So, hi! Today I’m bringing you a recipe that I came up with a while ago, but seems especially relevant to me now because…wait for it…
I’m doing Whole30. What!!! I had honestly NEVER thought seriously about doing it until I was chatting with my coworker literally the other day, and asking her what the difference is between Paleo + Whole30 out of curiosity (lol I’m obviously clueless). Full disclosure: I’ve been feeling pretty crappy and not like myself these days. I think it’s just something that happens in the summer, when I start to have a few too many patio drinks and get-togethers that make me overindulge a bit. It’s definitely been affecting the way I feel and perform, so after chatting briefly with my coworker about Whole30 and how well it’s worked for her in the past, I sort of decided right then and there to give it a try!
I’m reading the book, It Starts with Food, and it’s actually incredibly interesting (if you like to nerd out on food science-y stuff like I do – but in very plain terms) even if you don’t actually want to do the program. At first I thought everything sounded way too extreme for me, and I’ve never (EVER) been one to believe in “dieting” or extreme measures, but reading about it actually makes it very logical and fascinating.
Bottom line, I’d like to give my body a bit of a break and see which foods are taxing to my digestive system, so I need something very strict in order to implement the changes I want to make. That leads me to this granola! The toughest change for me on Whole30 is breakfast, as I looove a sweet breakfast (that’s still healthy of course) and hardly ever eat eggs or veggies in the morning (unless I’m out for brunch). BUT! I made this granola a few weeks ago and have been loving it, and just realized it’s Whole30 complaint (I think…unless it’s considered SWYPO…) so I can continue to put it on my morning baked sweet potato or atop my veggie-heavy smoothies!
This recipe is heavily adapted from Rachel Mansfield’s pistachio cacao grain-free granola, which I was making for a long time and loving. I switched up the nuts, removed the cacao, added salt and lots of cinnamon, and here we are! It’s amazing and I highly encourage you to give it a try, even if you tend to reach for the sugary granolas/cereals in the morning. I promise you can get used to eating something far less sweet and still feel like it’s a satisfying treat – I sure did!
- 1 cup raw almonds
- 1 cup raw cashews
- 1 cup raw pumpkin seeds (sunflower works too)
- 1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
- ¼ cup ground flaxseed
- 1.5 tsp. cinnamon
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 1/4 cup cashew butter
- 3 tbsp. coconut oil
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract or powder
- Preheat the oven to 325 and line a large baking sheet.
- Place your nuts in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until you they're broken up but you still have small chunks. Add in the seeds + coconut and pulse a couple more times to combine everything. You should have a mixture of fairly small chunks (about the size of oats). Stir in the cinnamon + salt.
- In a small saucepan, melt your coconut oil over medium, then remove from heat once it's melted and stir in your cashew butter and vanilla until you have a smooth mixture.
- Pour the liquid mixture over your dry pieces and combine thoroughly until all pieces are coated.
- Bake in the oven for 20-25 mins, stirring halfway through and keeping a close watch to make sure it doesn't burn. It will still feel slightly moist and less "crispy" than traditional granola when you take it out of the oven - that's okay!
- Let it cool completely for at least 30 mins, then transfer to a large glass jar or container and store in the FRIDGE (this will keep it crunchy!). Enjoy on smoothies, pancakes, yogurt, etc!