Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Granola Goodness

In my quest to find a granola made with gluten free oats I decided to make my own.  I found this recipe on but added my own changes to make it a bit healthier and sugar free.  However, this recipe uses a few controversial ingredients.  Scientists and nutritionists are continually making changes on what "healthy" means.  After growing up with the "It's okay! It's Fat Free" of the 80s and then the "Anything Low-Carb" of the 90s and 2000s, I've become a huge fan of the Michael Pollan's school of thought and just my general idea that things are okay in moderation provided that it's something natural as opposed to derived from science. (Not that I'm against science by any means!  Go Darwin!)  So bring on the controversial ingredients featured in the granola:

Coconut Oil:  Killed in the press in the 1980s because of it's high saturated fat content and because of the over processed version, coconut oil is regaining popularity because some believe that it's actually good for you.  Search online and find articles about this tasty oil (and fruit and milk...) and make up your own mind. 

Coconut Palm Sugar:  This recipe is the first time I've ever cooked with this sweetener but I'm starting to experiment with it as a sugar alternative.  Really any sweetener in large quantities is bad for most of us humans so I try not to eat too much of my drug of choice.  However, I'm trying to find the best one and this on has good reputation.

Agave Nectar:  This sweetener caused major controversy in the land of "fru-fru" sweeteners. First it was the wonder sweetener, then it was bad, then it was good, and now....who knows?  So, again, I use it in moderation.  I know that when I eat things made with it, I want more of the baked good later but I don't CRAVE it like I do when I eat thing made with regular, old sugar.

Ground Flax Seeds: Okay, no one has a problem with this one these days but I have heard/read that it's best to eat these freshly ground and not to cook them. So, if you want the most Omega 3's from these tiny seeds, buy them whole and ground them yourself then sprinkle them on the just out of the oven granola. 

Are we done with the theory? Let's get on to the tastiness! Be aware...this makes a ton and it's also delicious!  Gluten Free Friends--you might want to start off slow and work your way up to a real portion of this because sometimes even gluten free oats are a bit much for our tummies to take on.

Granola Goodness 

Adapted from Megan's Granola


  • 8 cups rolled oats
  • 1 1/2 cups Quinoa Flakes
  • 1/2 cup ground flax seeds
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1 cup sliced almonds
  • 1 cup finely chopped pecans
  • 1 cup finely chopped walnuts
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 cup palm sugar
  • 1/4 cup agave nectar
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup molasses 
  •  2/3 cup coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups raisins or sweetened dried cranberries


  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Combine the oats, quinoa flakes,  sunflower seeds, almonds, pecans, and walnuts in a large bowl. Stir together the salt, palm sugar, agave nectar, honey, oil, cinnamon, and vanilla in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat, then pour over the dry ingredients, and stir to coat. Spread the mixture out evenly on the baking sheets.
  3. Bake in the preheated oven until toasted, about 20 minutes. Stir once halfway through.  Once out of the oven sprinkle on the ground flax seeds and stir.  After about 20 minutes out of the oven it will become crispy. Cool, then stir in the raisins or cranberries before storing in an airtight container.  


  1. I have had your granola and it is deeee-lish! I don't care if it has "controversial" ingredients :)