Our Favorite Granola

Hello friends, happy almost-spring! It’s raining and gloomy here in Minnesota…but I’ll take it, because it’s 39 degrees and the mounds of snow are slowly getting washed away. I’m beginning to see the light!

If you follow along on Instagram, you know that I shared some ideas on how we buy our yogurt and put yogurt parfaits together. And as I was talking about it, I realized I haven’t shared our go-to granola recipe as of the last few years with you. Shame on me!

This recipe is super adaptable…you can use whatever nuts or seeds your family prefers. You can also leave out the coconut or add in dried fruit like raisins or cranberries after it’s done baking if you’d like. The version I have below is our favorite…but I’ll be sure to add substitution options into the recipe so that you can create your own.

It’s also the PERFECT recipe for your kids to help with. It’s so easy and requires only measuring and mixing with your hands…my kiddos love to help with this! It keeps really well in an air tight container in the fridge for up to a couple weeks…and you can also freeze it too. I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!

Our Favorite Granola

Note: you can easily add dried fruit to this..just stir it into the mixture right when it comes out of the oven. Also, if you prefer a sweeter granola go for 4 tablespoons of syrup…if you prefer a more mildly sweet version go for 3. If you’d like to keep this recipe gluten free, just be sure that the oats you are using are gf.

Ingredients

3 Cups Rolled or Old Fashioned Oats

1 Cup Finely Chopped Walnuts-or any combo of Chopped Nuts or Seeds

1/2 Cup Unsweetened Coconut Chips-you can swap out for coconut flakes

3-4 Tablespoons Pure Maple Syrup, see note above

3 Tablespoons Coconut Oil, melted

1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract

3/4 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon

1/2 Teaspoon Finely Ground Sea Salt

Directions

Preheat oven to 300 and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place all ingredients in a large bowl and mix well with your hands. Spread in an even layer on your prepared baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes, stirring halfway in between cooking. Remove from oven, cool and store in an air tight container in the fridge.

Chocolate Chip Cherry Bites

My kids are totally into making all kinds of snack bites like these lately. They’re such a yummy treat, are great for lunchbox packing, and best of all…the kids can literally make these from start to finish all by themselves….Just look at Jude’s work of art…I can’t handle how cute and homemade looking they are!

Chocolate Chip Cherry Bites

Ingredients

1 Cup Rolled Oat

1/2 Cup Flax Meal

1/2 Cup Peanut, Cashew or Almond Butter

1/3 Cup Pure Maple Syrup

1/4 Cup Chocolate Chips

1/4 Cup Dried Unsweetened Cherries

Pinch of Sea Salt

Directions

Place all ingredients in a medium sized bowl and stir until well combined. Form into tablespoon sized balls and store in the refrigerator.

Cinnamon Apple Pear Sauce

Look, you guys

It’s here. My most favorite, beautiful, scenic time of year. I told the kids it was supposed to snow this week so we had to ask Alexa when the first technical day of winter is. Do you want to know what she said? December 21st. Yet we have snow in the forecast for today, November 6. You try explaining all of this to a 4 year old. Why oh why can’t crispy, cool autumn fulfill its assigned 3 full months?! Winter is so dang greedy and aggressive around here🙄

But we certainly won’t stop celebrating autumn in this house until that far away day in December…and this yummy Cinnamon Apple Pear Sauce will certainly be a constant in our fridge. I’m addicted. My kids could take down an entire batch in one sitting. I even got a “I want to eat this every day of my life!” from Jude. Winning.

It’s both tart and sweet with the perfect amount of warm cinnamon running through it. Incredibly slurpable by itself with a spoon, but my kids also love it for breakfast on top of plain Greek yogurt. A happy happy happy autumn, indeed, even if it does snow today!

Cinnamon Apple Pear Sauce

Adapted from this recipe

Ingredients

7 Medium Honeycrisp Apples, peeled, cored and quartered

4 Medium Ripe Pears, cored and quartered

Zest and Juice of 2 Navel Oranges

Zest of 1 and Juice of 2 Lemons

3 Tablespoons Pure Maple Syrup

2 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter, cut into four pieces

1 1/4 Teaspoons Ground Cinnamon

1/4 Teaspoon Ground Allspice

1/4 Teaspoon Salt

Directions

Preheat oven to 350. Place all ingredients in a oven safe pot or Dutch oven and stir to combine. Cover and bake for 1 1/2 hours. Remove from oven, let cool just slightly, place in a blender or food processor and blend until desired consistency.

Pumpkin Banana Bread

All things pumpkin are in full effect! Are you loving it or ready to move right into peppermint for the holidays?

We are embracing it over here…I love the warm spices that meld so wonderfully with the flavor of pumpkin. And this Pumpkin Banana Bread is the perfect display of that.

It screams fall with just the perfect amount of cozy spices and warm maple flavor. The combination of pumpkin and banana is such a good thing. And if you want to take it up to the level of perfection, sprinkle a bit of cinnamon and coconut sugar on top of the loaf before you bake it…heavenly!

It’s so much more healthful than your standard banana bread recipe, and you won’t miss all that refined sugar one bit, i promise!

Pumpkin Banana Bread

Note: you can buy oat flour at most markets…but it’s super simple and much cheaper to make your own at home. Just place rolled oats in a food processor or blender and process until the oats are very fine and flour-like.

Ingredients

1 1/4 Cups Oat Flour * see note

1/2 Cup White Whole Wheat or All Purpose Flour

1 Teaspoon Baking Soda

1 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon

1/2 Teaspoon Ground Nutmeg

1/2 Teaspoon Salt

1/4 Teaspoon Allspice

1 Cup Canned Pumpkin

1/2 Cup Mashed Ripe Banana (approx 1 Banana)

1/2 Cup Pure Maple Syrup

6 Tablespoons Melted Unsalted Butter, slightly cooled

2 Large Eggs

1 Teaspoon Vanilla

Optional topping: 1 Tablespoon Coconut Sugar mixed with 2 Teaspoons Ground Cinnamon

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 and grease a 9×5 loaf pan or mini loaf pan with butter. Place the flours, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and allspice in a medium bowl and whisk to combine.

In a large bowl whisk together the pumpkin, banana, maple syrup, butter, eggs and vanilla until combined. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet and stir until just combined. Pour batter in prepared loaf pan and sprinkle with coconut sugar/cinnamon topping if desired.

Bake for 1 hour, if using a 9×5, or approximately 30 minutes if using a mini loaf pan, or until toothpick is inserted an comes out clean. Slightly cool before slicing.

Apple Cinnamon Pastries


It’s starting to officially feel like fall, guys! How have you been celebrating? Give me all the warm coffee, crunchy leaves, cool, refreshing air, pumpkins, corn mazes, scenic colors that will blow your mind…and APPLES! It’s all happening in our neck of the woods and if I could just pile on an extra couple months of this stuff I’d be one over-the-moon mama. Minnesota truly feels like the most magical place this time of year.

We had our annual apple orchard trip a couple weeks ago and, well, if you know me you know that it’s my very favorite family outing of the year. Being stuck in the middle of nowhere surrounded by the most incredible scenery with my four favorite humans just simply isn’t a terrible way to spend a Saturday. We got to show the baby all the ropes this year…and man the big kids are becoming pro pickers! Here are a few photos from the day Continue reading