Sunday, March 16, 2014

Carrot Cake Granola #EatAtoZChallenge

Okay, I'm officially on a carrot cake kick. First the Honeyed Carrot Cake Butter, now this granola? I'm dedicated to morphing one of my favourite treats into everything possible. After all, I already did many, many versions of the cake form itself, right? I even did a couple cookies. So I guess now it's time that breakfast gets it's due.

Carrot Cake Granola

I wish I could have taken credit for this fantastic breakfast-dessert mashup, but I'm not quite that creative. No, that honour goes to Heather - when I saw that jar of goodness I knew I had to try something similar. The original recipe was pretty au naturale for my taste though - my family is known for liking lots of "stuff" in their mixes, so I decided to add a handful of the things we like in our carrot cake to the oat-carrot mix. In the end, I wound up using raisins, dried pineapple, wheat germ, and sunflower seeds for a truly "breakfasty" experience. I also bumped up the amount of carrots, since if I'm going to eat carrot cake anything it better taste like carrots!

In the end, the recipe really looks nothing like the original, but there's no way I would have gone into "veggie granola" territory without seeing someone else do it first! Whether you sprinkle it on oatmeal, make yoghurt parfaits, add crunch to ice cream or baked apples, how can you go wrong?

Eat A to Z Healthy Recipe Challenge

It's time for this round of the Eat A to Z Challenge hosted by Meal Planning Magic, Sparkles and a Stove and Alida’s Kitchen! This month is "C" and "D" foods - think back to Sesame Street and share the love on the hop page up till March 19!

Carrot Cake Granola
Makes ~8 ½ cups, 17 (1/2 cup) servings
2 cups thick cut rolled oats
1 ½ cups wheat germ
½ cup sunflower seeds
½ cup unsweetened shredded coconut
½ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp nutmeg
½ tsp salt
4 medium coarsely grated carrots
3 tbsp canola oil
½ cup orange juice
⅓ cup brown sugar
2 tbsp agave nectar (or honey)
1 tbsp vanilla
⅓ cup raisins
¼ cup diced dried pineapple
  1. Preheat the oven to 325F and line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment or Silpat.
  2. Stir together the oats, wheat germ, sunflower seeds, coconut, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and carrots in a large bowl.
  3. Whisk together the oil, orange juice, sugar, agave and vanilla in another bowl.
  4. Pour over the dry mixture, stirring well.
  5. Spread out on the baking sheet.
  6. Bake for 30 minutes, then gently stir the granola to break it into clusters.
  7. Bake 30 minutes longer.
  8. Stir in the raisins and pineapple.
  9. Cool completely on the sheet before transferring to an airtight container.
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 176.1
Total Fat: 7.1 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 71.3 mg
Total Carbs: 26.6 g
Dietary Fiber: 3.4 g
Protein: 4.9 g