Crunchy Cranberry Almond Granola
This is one of the most satisfying granola recipes I've tasted yet! I love it when granola clumps - kind of like broken up Nature Valley - you know what I mean?
Granola gets a bad rap due to it being high calorie - however, this is often due to added oils and a high sugar content. I'm continuing to stick with a whole foods plant based diet , so this recipe is 100% oil free, and the sugar content is less than conventional recipes. If you use a lower calorie sweetener (totally your choice!), it can be sugar free (except for any added sweetened fruit). I included a bit of molasses for its unique flavor and additional iron (did you know that blackstrap molasses is an awesome iron source?! Who knew?)
The almond butter and chia seeds provide beneficial proteins, healthy fats, and minerals such as calcium and magnesium, and the oats are a low glycemic grain rich in antioxidants and soluble fiber. The cranberries add such a pop of tartness - and are an excellent source of vitamin C.
This granola is an excellent, balanced snack on it own, but also pairs wonderfully when used as a topping for smoothies, breakfast bowls, or yogurt. It is also delicious mixed with plant based milk, fruit, and/or nuts. I have been finding big pieces and topping with more nut butter...mmmmm! Enjoy my friends! xo
Cranberry Almond Butter Granola
Makes about 8 1/2 cup servings
6 Tbsp maple syrup (if watching sugar I recommend this brand)
1 Tbsp molasses
1 Tbsp honey or agave
2 Tbsp chia seeds
¼ cup almond butter
1 tbsp acacia fiber
¼ tsp coarse sea salt
1.5 tsp cinnamon
3 cups old fashioned oats
1 cup dried cranberries
Optional: ⅓ cup chocolate chips or vegan chocolate chips
1) Preheat oven to 275 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spray with an oil spray.
2) Combine maple syrup, molasses, honey, chia seeds, almond butter, acacia fiber, cinnamon, and salt in a large bowl. Stir with a spoon until very smooth.
3) Add oats to bowl, and stir well to ensure all oats are coated with liquid mixture.
Spread the coated oats on the parchment paper in a thin layer. Using a spatula, gently press down on the oats to make them flat.
4) Bake for 20 minutes. Remove from oven, and turn gently with a spatula. Return to oven and bake for another 20 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool completely, and stir in dried cranberries and/or chocolate chips.
Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week.