Sunday, February 26, 2012

Better for you Granola

If you've ever attempted to make your own granola before you know it's typically filled with fat and sugar and loaded with calories. This recipe drastically cuts the amount of oil and sugar by relying on egg whites to bind it together. I adapted this recipe from Cooking Light magazine by quadrupling it, adding a little oil (just to give it some more crunch and staying power), and lowered the amount of sugar. The result is just as tasty and more nutritious.

-4 cups rolled oats
-1 cup chopped nuts of your choice (I used sliced almonds)
-2 Tbsp of canola oil
-3 egg whites
-1 tsp vanilla
-1/4 cup brown sugar
-1 tsp cinnamon
-1/2 tsp salt
-2 Tbsp to 1/4 cup of honey (depending on how sweet you like it)*

1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
2. Mix oats and nuts together in a large bowl.
3. Add oil to oats and nuts and stir well to coat evenly
4. Beat egg whites and vanilla together in a separate bowl until foamy.
5. Add egg white mixture to oat mixture and fold to coat oats evenly.
6. Mix brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt together in a bowl.
7. Fold brown sugar mixture into oat mixture.
8. Fold honey into oat mixture.
9. Spread granola onto a baking sheet (try to keep it clumped together but thinly spread enough to toast it evenly).
10. Bake for 25 min, stirring gently once after 15 min.
11. Let cool in pan before transferring to an airtight container.

*You need both brown sugar and honey for this recipe because they each serve a different purpose. Brown sugar helps to make the oats crunchy and crispy and honey helps to bind the mixture together to give you clusters. You can substitute maple syrup or agave nectar for the honey, but I don't recommend substituting for the sugar.