Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Peanut Butter and Quinoa Granola

Yes I know...another granola recipe. You're probably thinking to yourself: "How can she have yet another granola recipe...didn't she already figure it out?" The truth is yes...for the most part I figured out two different base recipes that I alter with different mix-ins to create various flavors. However this granola is not like the others because it also uses quinoa, a new favorite ingredient of mine. The quinoa isn't cooked before being added to the oats, rather it gets baked right into the granola itself.

Personally I think that this is my new favorite granola. Granted I may say that about the next one I make but for now this is it. Being the texture snob that I am, I love how the quinoa provided an extra crunch to the granola. Also, the base recipe had a good ratio of wet to dry ingredients making for a crunchy granola to start with that was full of peanut flavor. Of course that could easily be changed to some other type of nut with the appropriate substitution. That being said I would still recommend using a nut butter of some sort, such as almond or cashew, because without it there will not be enough wet binder for the granola to stick together in clumps.

As for the mix-ins, I'm not a coconut lover myself but I know that coconut flakes are a common and popular granola addition. Other things include various dried fruits, banana chips, or chocolate chips. Ultimately, I highly recommend trying this granola because it's probably unlike any you have tasted before with the great addition of quinoa.

Peanut Butter and Quinoa Granola
  • 2 cups large-flake (old-fashioned) rolled oats
  • ¾ cup quinoa, rinsed
  • ¾ cup lightly salted roasted peanuts, coarsely chopped
  • ½ tsp fine sea salt
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ¼ cup natural cane sugar or packed light brown sugar
  • ¼ cup honey
  • ½ cup unsweetened natural peanut butter
  • cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • cup dried cranberries
  1. In a large bowl, combine the oats, quinoa, peanuts, salt and cinnamon.  
  2. In a small saucepan, combine the sugar and honey. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring constantly. Turn off heat and stir in peanut butter, oil, and vanilla until blended.
  3. Pour the peanut butter mixture over the oats and stir until evenly coated. Spread the mixture in a single layer on a large rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  4. Bake for 30-45 minutes (time will vary based on size of baking sheet) at 325 degrees Fahrenheit or until the granola becomes golden brown. Stir every 10-15 minutes to ensure even baking.
  5. Remove from the oven and allow the granola to cool completely on the tray before mixing in the dried cranberries and transferring to an airtight container.

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