Photo Credit: Lia Wiedemann
For the past few years, I’ve been making a granola from one of my favorite food blogs. With almonds, unsweetened coconut and chocolate (the original recipe says to use bittersweet, but I prefer dark), it’s not too sweet, but I always feel funny starting my day with some. Stopping after one bowl probably would solve that.
These days, I usually have to share whatever I’m with eating my oldest son, Nico. Thanks to me, he really likes dark chocolate. Of course, he’ll happily eat any type, but since I prefer bars with 70 to 80% cacao, that’s what he usually gets. When he realized that the granola I was always eating had chocolate, he began requesting it—every day. Dark chocolate has health benefits, which is one of the reasons I allow myself to eat so much of it, but I’m not sure the same rules should apply to a toddler. The time had come for a new granola recipe.
On a recent visit to One Girl Cookies, one of my favorite Brooklyn bakeries, I tried their granola with homemade yogurt and stewed fruit. I also picked up a batch to go. It comes in a big mason jar, and luckily, a little card that listed the ingredients was attached.
What I came up with is similar to the chocolate granola, but it doesn’t include oil or sugar; thanks to One Girl Cookies, I gave maple syrup a try. I also added some pumpkin seeds, and a mixture of dried cranberries and blueberries. I’m not swearing off chocolate granola for good, but for now, this is what my little guy and I will be munching when we wake up, and probably again at 4 p.m.
Crunchy Double-Berry Granola
6 cups rolled oats (I like Bob’s Red Mill Extra Thick)
1 cup pumpkin seeds
1 cup raw sliced almonds
1 cup unsweetened coconut chips (I prefer bigger pieces of coconut in my granola, but shredded will also work. If you don’t like coconut, leave it out.)
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup dried blueberries
Pinch of salt
3/4 cup maple syrup (I don’t like my granola too sweet, but this might not be sweet enough for some—taste, and add up to 1/4 cup more if necessary)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
In a big bowl, combine the oats, pumpkin seeds, almonds, coconut, salt and maple syrup. Stir well to make sure the mixture gets coated with the syrup. Place on a sheet pan and put in the oven. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, stirring halfway through so the granola browns evenly. I like my granola crunchy and the browner it gets without burning, the crunchier it’ll be.
When the granola is golden brown, remove pan from the oven and stir in the dried berries. Once the granola has cooled off, transfer it to an airtight container.
Enjoy with milk, yogurt or by itself.
Yield: About 8 cups
Lia Wiedemann is a writer who loves food and her two little boys. She leads Brooklyn food tours for new moms and shares favorite recipes and restaurants on her blog, This Little Piglet.