Grain-free Granola


 So, granola – I love granola, but haven’t eaten it in so, so long! Too many carbs, too much sugar….But, I needed some new breakfast options.  You see, I’m eating plant-based.  Why, you ask?  Well, I’m trying to avoid a statin prescription, trying to lose more weight, and trying to reverse my type-II diabetes.  The hardest part?  Giving up the cream in my coffee, but I’ve done it.  No dairy for the past 15 days – I began tapering myself off in December.
a8c2c-granola005The transition has been smooth, for the most part, with breakfast being my Achilles heel.  No eggs, no cheese, and remember, no gluten.  Oh, and I watch my carb intake.  Yes, I’m attempting to do this while keeping my carbs low.  Not ketogenically low, but lower than the average American eater.  After searching for some alternatives, I saw many grain-free granola recipes.  I thought, why not?
4913e-granola017Here’s the great thing about the recipe, if you’re not eating low-carb, just substitute real honey for my sugar-free honey, oatmeal for the TVP, and toss in some dried fruit.  As much as I wanted to add dried fruit, I didn’t have any no-sugar added blueberries or cranberries.

The husband likes the granola, but would prefer it in bar form.  I love it!  I’ve been a happy plant-eater every morning, eating a bowl of granola and unsweetened almond milk for breakfast.

Grain-free Granola, my way
2 cups pecans, coarsely chopped
2 cup slivered almonds
1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
1 cup TVP, optional (do not rehydrate)
1/3 cup coconut oil, melted
1/2 cup Swerve or Xylitol *
1/4 cup sugar-free honey or 1/4 cup sugar-free English Toffee syrup
1-2 teaspoons ground cinnamon (I used 2)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon maple extract
1 tablespoon chia seeds mixed with 3 tablespoons water
1/2 – 1 teaspoon salt or to taste

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper; set aside.
Combine the chia seeds and water in a small bowl; stir and set aside for 10-15 minutes.
Combine melted coconut oil with the honey or sugar-free syrup, cinnamon, vanilla extract, maple extract, chia gel, and salt – stir well.
Add remaining ingredients, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
Once the ingredients are all well-moistened, spread onto prepared pan.
Place in oven or 30 minutes, remove, toss with a spatula, and return to oven, tossing every 15 minutes until desired color is achieved.  This took about an hour for me.
Allow to cool before storing in a sealed container.
Keeps for a week in the pantry, longer if kept in the refrigerator.

*Dog owners be aware!

***If you’re adding dried fruit, do so after you remove the granola from the oven.