Healthy granola (no sugar or oil)
Healthy granola (no sugar or oil)
It’s so beautiful out, the sun is out, the birds are chirping away like crazy, there is a gentle breeze in the air, my cat is frolicking in the grass, so all I really wanna do is to slump somewhere in the garden with a book in hand and a homemade ginger-mint lime-onade but work is calling so I thought I should make an appearance.
I know you are probably not in the mood for cooking either, so today I bring you my latest summer breakfast recipe that is delicious and healthy and serves as a perfect vehicle for all the seasonal fruit to be delivered straight to your mouth. It’s a healthier take on granola. This recipe uses no oil or any added sugar whatsoever (well, apart from my stem ginger cubes which you can replace with any dry fruit) and that’s how it’s been designed, so I’m accepting no complaints about it not being sweet enough 😉 .
Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against a more indulgent granola at all. In fact, I love it so much that whenever I make a batch, I won’t rest until I hoover it all up on the day I made it (!) so it’s a bit of a lethal substance in my house. However, I really don’t think your body needs any sugar first thing in the morning and I’ve found this sugar-free granola served alongside a few dollops of my favourite vegan yoghurt and a handful of strawberries makes my tastebuds totally happy and doesn’t make me reach for the maple syrup. I’m hoping you’ll agree.
This is a perfect warm weather breakfast and tastes even better after you’ve done some exercise first thing. Since we have been having some proper hot weather here in Bristol, I’ve decided that the only way I can ever go back to regular running – after I ditched it for a month due to post-vaccine fatigue first and then being away – is to wake up early and go first thing. I bet for many people that’s not a big deal at all, but for me – a night owl – it’s akin to torture. After talking about it for days, I finally managed to drag myself outside before it got too hot to trot (I mean literally) and did a 5K. It wasn’t pretty, my body isn’t used to it, but I am working on changing that. Today I’m resting my aching muscles a little and tomorrow is my second run, wish me luck! Coming back home to a few glasses of cold water and a cooling granola breakfast in the garden feels like such a treat!
- 120 g / ½ cup mashed ripe banana*
- 15 g / 2 tbsp ground flax seeds or chia seeds
- 25 g / 2 tbsp runny almond butter (or other nut / seed butter)
- 170 g / 2 cups rolled jumbo oats (gluten-free certified if required)
- 50 g / ½ cup chopped almonds or other nuts / seeds
- 50 g / ½ cup chopped pecans or other nuts / seeds
- 1 tsp vanilla paste
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp cardamom
- ¼ tsp fine sea salt
- ¼ tsp baking soda
- OPTIONAL ADDITION: 50 g / 1¾ oz stem ginger (3 balls), diced finely or dried apricots
- Preheat the oven to 130° C / 265° F fan function (or 150° C / 300° F without the fan) and line a large baking tray with a piece of baking paper.
- In a large bowl, mix mashed up banana, ground flax and almond butter. Stir well until well combined and set aside for 10 minutes for flax to activate.
- Mix in the rest of the ingredients.
- Spread the granola mixture on the prepared baking tray and bake for about 40 minutes. Rotate the tray and flip the granola pieces after about 20 minutes – use a spatula and be gentle if you don’t want break big clusters up.
- Allow the granola to cool down (it will crisp up) before using. Store in an airtight container. Use within a week.
Portion size is 1 cup as specified under the nutritional table. You cannot make granola without any type of sugar (mashed banana in my case). I mean you can but it will be savoury so I am not sure what to advise. I used a small amount of stem ginger and gave dried apricots as an alternative option, but you can omit that if you pefer - I find that they help with flavour an awful lot. Sugar in fruit (not fruit juice) is not metabolised exactly as table sugar - it's a myth - as it comes as a whole package, with fibre etc. - Dr Greger talks about it a lot - see this video. Hope this helps! x Ania
I’m just wondering if you think this will keep in an airtight container beyond 1 week - say 2 weeks? I would love to make a big batch of this to last a bit longer. I’m trying to make my granola rather than buy it now.
Delicious with some natural yogurt and frozen blueberries & blackberries.
I shall be making this for my niece who has dietary restrictions.
And I also wanted to tell you how much I respect your work. All recipes that I have tried so far are of very high quality. I do realize how much work it is to perfect it to this level. Thank you for your work of bringing tasty healthy and environmentally friendly food to people.
You can safely skip it or use vanilla extract / essence if that's what you have. Hope this helps! Ania
Stem ginger is candied and preserved in syrup, candied ginger is just coated in sugar as far as I know. You don't have to use ginger though, chopped dried fruit like mango, apricots, raisins will be just as good. Hope you'll enjoy this granola! x Ania
This is what it looks like. It's a very popular baking addition in the UK. You can sub with any dried fruit though. Ania
Thank you, I hope you'll enjoy this sugar-free version. Baking soda makes it a little less dense, but you can skip it if you wish. And yes, vanilla extract is totally fine to use. Ania