granola for friends

I love granola much more than I should.  Yes, it is healthy, but not eaten by the handful like it so commonly is (in this household anyways).  After the gluten episode this past weekend we were forced to re-evaluate our oat consumption.  I was going on a nice streak there for a while where I had oats every breakfast – and I mean each and every breakfast.  Sure, there were a couple of other things thrown in their occasionally, but usually it was oats.  Regular oats, steel-cut oats, oat bran, overnight oats, dough-boy smoothies…  Because of the sheer consumption of oats and a new employee budget, gluten-free oats was not something that I even wanted to think about.  Yes, I will pay $2 for more oats and avoid paying $6 for just making sure they’re not cross-contaminated with wheat.  Well, as I now know – gluten-free oats should be the star of the show here.  Unfortunately we had over half of a big tub of good ol’ quaker oats to use up and I was not going to throw away any more food.  And there’s no better place to use up food you can no longer can eat than on your friends!  I surprised one of my good friends with a big ol’ bag of this granola.  And I will definitely be making it again for myself and sister with gluten-free oats.

Cinnamon-Vanilla Granola adapted from Coffee & Tea Warehouse 

  • 4 cups rolled oats
  • 1/2c light brown sugar
  • 1/4c oat flour (or whole-wheat)
  • 1/2t salt
  • 2t cinnamon
  • 1/3c grapeseed oil
  • 1/4c honey
  • 1t vanilla

1. Preheat oven to 300′ and get out a rimmed baking sheet.

2. Place rolled oats into a large bowl and add in the brown sugar, flour, salt and cinnamon.  Mix to distribute.

3. In a small sauce pan, heat up the oil and honey until they just come to a simmer.  Take off heat and add vanilla.

4. Mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir to combine.

5. Put on the baking sheet and bake for around 40 minutes or until golden brown, stirring every 10 minutes.

This recipe is incredibly versatile.  You can add nuts, seeds, dried fruits, cacao nibs… anything your heart fancies.  This was always my go-to granola recipe a few years back and I am not quite sure why I ever gave up using it!  I always added 1c of sunflower seeds in with the oats and it was awesome.

I highly recommend making this and having a bowl full of granola with the milk of your choice.  Just doesn’t get much better than that.

Want a more natural and gluten-free version?  Here’s what changes I will make next time for us!

  • 4 cups gluten-free rolled oats
  • 2T sucanat
  • 1/4c oat flour
  • 1/2t salt
  • 2t cinnamon
  • 1/3c grapeseed oil
  • 1/4c honey
  • 1t vanilla

I would consider decreasing the oil a bit as well… but it is just so darn good I don’t think I want to mess with it too much!  But I think decreasing the amount of sweetness and using sucanat instead of brown sugar will be the perfect alteration for our taste buds.

Now where are those gluten-free oats…

betty, who?

There are few things I make or bake repeatedly.  I usually like to shake things up to try out new recipes and ideas.  There are only a handful of recipes I would ever repeat, and now with my gluten intolerance rising, I will most likely never be able to make my most beloved recipes again… Well, the exact recipes I initially fell in love with anyways.

I remember the recipe for French Breakfast Puffs from Betty Crocker as a often-repeated recipe, going all the way back to childhood.  It’s actually in my mom’s red Betty Crocker cookbook she received for her wedding many years before I even made an appearance.  It was always a favorite, especially the end part where my sister and I got to dunk the tops of the muffins in butter and cinnamon sugar.  I thought it was about time to make this recipe again, and did my best to replicate it while making it gluten free and dairy free.  Perfect for any time of the day.

Gluten Free & Dairy Free French Breakfast Puffs adapted from Betty Crocker
makes 10 muffins 

  • 1/3c unsweetened natural applesauce
  • 2T sucanat (SUcre CAnne NATurel aka sugar cane in its most natural form)
  • 1 egg (or flax egg)
  • 3/4 c millet flour
  • 3/4 c sorghum flour
  • 3/4 t xanthan gum
  • 1 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1/2 t nutmeg
  • 1/2 c unsweetened almond milk

1. Mix together the applesauce, sucanat and egg.

2. Sift the dry ingredients together in a separate bowl.

3. Add the dry ingredients into the wet, alternating with the almond milk.

4. Scoop into a sprayed (or lined) muffin pan and bake at 350* for 20-22 minutes.

5. Allow to cool slightly (or completely) before coating.

  • 3T sucanat
  • 1 1/2 t cinnamon
  • 2T earth balance

*The topping measurements can be doubled if you prefer.  It also depends on how much of the muffin you dip and how many muffins your recipe makes.

6. Mix together the sucanat and cinnamon.  Melt the earth balance.

7. Dip each muffin first in the melted earth balance and then in the sucanat and cinnamon mixture.  (It’s easier to remove from the paper wrapping before dipping if you lined your pan).

Kinley says these are even better than the modified recipe we had been making of late which included replacing the shortening with applesauce.  Even though Betty thought she was pretty good in the baking department, I’d like to see her try to make a muffin taste better than this one!  Who needs gluten and dairy anyways?