Monday, April 16, 2012

Coconut Pecan Granola

Good Morning!  Today, I semi-cheated and had a small bowl of this granola with almond milk before blending up my regular green smoothie (today's has frozen cherries - yum!).  And, I'm still as much in love with this granola as I was yesterday when finalized my recipe changes.

See, I started out with an amazing recipe from Leesha's mom.  But, my own mom asked me for a low sugar option for my diabetic dad.  And because I battle with hypoglycemia and am on this low/no sugar kick, I loved that idea.

The original recipe calls for brown sugar, so I went Googling to find a sweetener with a lower glycemic index for my dad and me; a sweetener that won't spike our blood sugar as high.  I compared brown sugar to honey to real maple syrup to agave.  I'm not the biggest fan of agave syrup, but it came out the definite winner in this case.  So I used that and also lowered the amount I put in.

While I was at it, I made it nondairy for me, and also eliminated gluten (you'll need to use gluten free oats for that option).  You can definitely swap in your favorite sweetener (add a little water if you're opting for a granulated sugar), or use butter instead of the coconut oil.

And the reduced sugar, nondairy, gluten free end result is delicious!!  Bo's response: "That's amazing.  You should sell it."  Ha!  But I am so loving on this recipe.  It's so easy to throw together, that there's no reason I can't keep it on hand when I need to boost my blood sugars with a snack that also has some fat and protein.


p.s.  You may have noticed that this blog appears to be having a bit of an identity crisis :)  Fear not!  I'm just slowly rolling everything over to a new name.  More news on that front later this week, I promise..!

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Coconut Pecan Granola
adapted from Mrs. Cumming's recipe

1/3 c. (75g) coconut oil
1/3 c. (105g) agave syrup
1 Tbsp. vanilla
pinch salt (omit if nuts or seeds are salted)

2 c. (160g) oats
1 c. (120g) pecan pieces
1/2 c. (40g) unsweetened coconut flakes
1/4 c. (35g) sunflower seeds

Preheat oven to 300 degrees and line a large, rimmed baking sheet (11x17") with a silicone mat or parchment paper.

In a small sauce pan over medium heat, combine coconut oil, agave, and vanilla, and heat until coconut oil has melted.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, stir together remaining dry ingredients.  Pour coconut oil mixture over the oat mixture and stir to coat evenly.  Spread mixture onto prepared baking pan.  Bake for 20 minutes, stirring at the 10 and 20 minute marks.  Then, bake another 5 minutes, or until oats are a light gold, watching carefully to not burn.  The granola will continue to crisp as it cools.  Remove baking sheet from oven and allow granola to cool on the sheet, stirring a few times.

Store in an airtight container.  Makes approx. 5 cups.



  1. Leesha and I were at a friends house a few weeks ago and were comparing granola recipes. Her friend has three kids and she feeds them lots of fruits/veggies and very little sugar. Her granola recipe only had 2 tablespoons of butter and sugar, ours? 3/4 cup butter and 1 cup of brown sugar. I felt the burning shame of having a grossly nutritionally inferior granola. Ours IS very tasty though. Maybe I'll have to try a batch with some of your adaptations.

    1. I've had my share of very healthy granola and your recipe tastes *infinitely better.* The other stuff just tastes like toasted oats with dried fruit. With today's recipe, I still wanted that amazing taste, but healthier at the same time. The only thing I might do is lower the coconut oil and agave even further to 1/4 cup. (Note that this recipe is half of the original!)

    2. And considering that we usually eat our granola a half cup at a time with organic yogurt and blueberries/strawberries, it's probably not the worst thing. I do need to do some experimenting with your changes though. If I can sacrifice 10% of taste for a 50% improvement in nutrition, we should do it.

      Good luck with the new rollout and please let me know if there's anything I can do to help. I'm happy to guest post, cross promote, or any of the other blogging jargon things, anything to help, just lemme know.

    3. THANKS! You know how much we love your gardening guest posts.... Anything in the pipeline on that front?

    4. We're still a good 3-4 weeks away from being able to plant stuff outside, so on the one hand I don't have a ton of current year examples, but on the other hand since outside activity isn't in full swing I do have more time to write.

      How about something on starting seeds indoors? The life cycle of a tomato from seed to sun ripened tomato? Planting potatoes? Planting and care of apple trees? Easy to grow and nutritionally dynamic berries? These are just off the top of my head.

  2. I love reading your posts! You have been awarded the Versatile Blogger award. You can read about it on my blog at


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