Healthy Granola

i have to share with you today one of our all time favorite recipes. we have this in our house at all times! the kids eat it for breakfast, lunch, and bella even ate some in yogurt for dinner last night! its SO tasty, but also really really healthy.

i have always been a big granola fan, but never liked all the calories and fat in them. so i searched for a recipe where i could cut out the calories, but still have it be really tasty and crunchy. i found this one, and tweaked it a little….and i think its the best!!

the greatest thing about this recipe is that it has no oil. most granola recipes call for oil, but emliminating the oil really cuts back on calories. plus, its super easy to make!

here’s the recipe:
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup water
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 teaspoons almond extract
1 teaspoon salt
8 cups rolled oats
2 cups slivered almonds
1/2 cup flax seed

gather your ingredients. make sure you use old fashioned oats, not quick cooking ones. if you don’t want to use almond extract, you can use 4 teaspoons of vanilla. but its really good with both!
combine the water and brown sugar in mircowave safe bowl. microwave about 3 minutes, or until all the sugar is dissolved.

meanwhile, combine oats, cinnamon, almonds, and flax seed in a large bowl.
when the sugar has dissolved, add in extracts and salt. stir to combine. pour into the oat mixture.
mix until oats are coated with sugar mixture.
spread out onto 2 large, greased baking sheets.
bake at 300 degrees for 20 minutes.
after 20 minutes, take out, stir granola, and put back into oven for 20 more minutes.
once its cooked the last 20 minutes, take it out and cool on sheet. it should harden a bit more as its cooling. if its not has crunchy as you’d like, put back in oven for a bit, but watch carefully, because i’ve burnt it before! even a little burnt on the edges kinda ruins the whole batch.
we keep it in a big canister with a scoop right on our counter for quick, healthy snacking!

and…as the perfect compliment…this is the most fan-freaking-tastic yogurt on the face of the earth! its got 140 calories, no fat, and 14 grams of protein. did you hear that?!
14 grams of protein!! its rich and creamy and thick…i mix the granola in this yogurt, and i feel like i am giving my kids (and myself) a power meal!! (ps: Costco sells it in bulk, and its a lot cheaper to buy it that way than individually.)
happy granola-ing!!