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Deliciously Organic: Chocolate Peanut Granola

Deliciously Organic

A blog devoted entirely to simple, wholesome, organic cooking.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Chocolate Peanut Granola


The kids started school today. I love the first day of school. The anticipation. The excitement. The freshly sharpened pencils, boxes of crayons, and new backpacks.

The start of school is like a second New Year. It's time for evaluating, reorganizing, and setting some new goals. I hope your list includes continuing to make small, simple steps toward eating a more healthy diet. It's not about a grand overhaul, but small changes for you and your family. The next two weeks I'll be giving advice and recipes to keep you and your family eating as healthfully as possible during the school year. Even if you aren't in school or don't have children, these ideas are for you too . . .

I want to start with breakfast. I know that as the year gets going, a healthy breakfast can be one of the first meals to slide. We often reach for something quick and easy (and unhealthy). You can feed yourself and your family on a rushed morning with a few simple steps, and nothing has to come from a box. Breakfast in our house is usually a rotating lists of foods. At 7am when the kids are running around I need quick nutritious foods.


First, I make large batches of muffins, pancakes, or waffles on the weekends and freeze them for weekday mornings. When we're rushing, I turn the oven to 350°F, place the muffins or whatever I've frozen in the oven (I don't even wait for the oven to heat up, just pop it in when you turn the oven on) go about getting everyone ready and in about 20 minutes I have a hot, healthy breakfast for everyone to enjoy.

A second option is granola. Honestly, I haven't found a store-bought cereal I can stand behind. Even the brands that advertise "whole grain" are usually still loaded with sweeteners and preservatives. So I make my own. I can't tell you how fast it is to throw together some granola that you can use as cereal in the mornings. The granola pictured today took me 10 minutes to toss together and 45 minutes of baking. Again, you can make some on the weekend or on a weekday when you have some time and you'll have cereal ready when you need it during the week.

Eggs make an excellent busy-morning bite. I make them sunny-side-up, in an omelet with spinach or bell peppers, or scrambled with shredded cheese mixed in. Eggs are incredibly nutritious and can be tossed together in a matter of minutes.

My daughter's favorite lately has been banana bread. I made a loaf last week and put it in the fridge. She pulls out the toaster, slices off a thick piece, toasts it and tops it with a little butter. That beats a "toaster pastry" out of a box any day.

Good, healthy breakfasts take a little preparation but totally pay off. This chocolate peanut granola is so amazing, you won't ever want to go back to cocoa cereal. It's chocolaty, crunchy, sweet, and filling. If you don't have time to eat it with milk, simply put it in a little bag and take it with you. If you have some left at the end of your week, you could always reward yourself for the healthy breakfasts and sprinkle it over vanilla ice cream!


Chocolate Peanut Granola
This recipe leaves lots of room for creativity. You can substitute the peanuts with almonds, pecans, or walnuts or try adding dried fruits like cherries to change things up a bit.
Makes about 10 cups
Adapted from Food Network

1/4 cup cacao powder (or cocoa powder)
4 1/2 cups rolled oats
1 cup sunflower seeds
3/4 cup white sesame seeds
2/3 cup coconut oil, melted
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons maple syrup
1/2 cup organic whole cane sugar or sucanat
2 cups raw peanuts
1 teaspoon coarse sea salt

Preheat oven to 300°F and adjust rack to middle position. Mix everything together very well in a large mixing bowl. Spread the mixture evenly on two baking sheets lined with parchment paper and bake for 45 minutes, turning over half-way through baking. Cool completely before serving. Crumble and store in an airtight container.

21 Comments:

Blogger Maria said...

I wish I was eating this for breakfast right now!

August 17, 2010 at 6:42 AM  
Anonymous Heather said...

Yummy! What a great quick and healthy early morning on the go breakfast. Tomorrow will mark the first day of tot school for my munchkins and like you I've been busy making goodies for rushed morning breakfasts. Great ideas!

August 17, 2010 at 6:45 AM  
Anonymous marla {family fresh cooking} said...

This is such a great granola recipe. I too shy away from the overly sugared processed store-bought versions. You have a great high energy breakfast here! xo

August 17, 2010 at 6:48 AM  
Blogger RecipeGirl said...

What a fun idea for breakfast. I've never thought to add chocolate to granola, & my kiddo would approve!

August 17, 2010 at 6:49 AM  
Anonymous Alison said...

I printed this recipe out so fast. Right up my alley!

August 17, 2010 at 7:24 AM  
Anonymous Kristen said...

This looks like something my kiddos would be all over! Yum!

August 17, 2010 at 8:25 AM  
Blogger Molly Chester said...

Hi Darling! I am going to pass this on to a family friend who's kids LOVE sugary boxed cereals. This would be a great substitute! I love your approach of giving advice for back-to-school. I found it really helpful, and I only have a little doggie in doggie day care. :)

See you soon! Molly

August 17, 2010 at 8:30 AM  
Anonymous Julie @ Willow Bird Baking said...

This granola looks and sounds delicious! I also just posted a recipe for homemade bran flakes on my blog, and a suggestion for how to make a "homemade breakfast cereal buffet" if you're interested -- your granola would be perfect for it!

I tend to eat turkey sausages for breakfast each day... variety is not my strong point during the week!! Ha.

August 17, 2010 at 10:01 AM  
Anonymous MamaBearJD@theonewithallthekids said...

I will be making this next, I have not had good luck serving granola before, but maybe with chocolate? This morning my school aged kids made your banana bread with me, we made muffins and told the 2 year old it was cake! I was out of buttermilk so I substituted greek yogurt with a little milk. They are packing these for a school snack tomorrow. Your use of whole wheat pastry flour is brilliant - I am having much more success with the kids following your recipes vs. those with plain WW flour. I am looking forward to your cookbook!

August 17, 2010 at 1:16 PM  
Blogger Deliciously Organic said...

MamabearJD: Thanks for letting me know! I'm so glad the recipes are helpful! :)

Julie: I saw your post last week and your cereal is on my "to try" list. I loved the photo of the jars all lined up! And the smores cereal? All I can say is, "yum".

August 17, 2010 at 4:10 PM  
Blogger Noelle said...

This looks so good! I must give it try. Great enticing pictures too!

August 18, 2010 at 4:26 AM  
Blogger Kimmy said...

This is SO helpful... LOVE LOVE LOVE these suggestions... if you were my neighbor - and because I know how great you are in person - I'd pick your brain about these things... (blog material hint, hint!) (o:

* easy, healthy school lunch ideas
* after school snacks ideas
* meal ideas to take to others (i.e. when they have a baby, etc.)
* whole healthy meals to serve to a group (Like church small group.)

I hope your girls have a great first week of school.... mine start Monday... I'm a little sad! We've had such a GREAT summer. But back to school is a fun time, too... ~ kim

August 18, 2010 at 6:39 AM  
Blogger Deliciously Organic said...

Kim: Thanks so much for the ideas. I'll actually be talking about lunch and snack ideas this week and next. I'll definitely use your other ideas also! Hope your back-to-school transition goes smoothly!

August 18, 2010 at 9:28 AM  
Blogger Lady Kay said...

Thank you for posting this recipe! One of my goals is to stop buying breakfast cereal but I am getting pretty tired of oatmeal every morning now...so this should be a nice [yummy] change!

August 18, 2010 at 11:01 AM  
Blogger Emily said...

I have a batch baking in the oven right now! I split it into 2 and made half with peanuts and half with raw cashews for Tyler (since he has a peanut allergy). It smells wonderful in the house and we can't wait till breakfast!

August 18, 2010 at 3:13 PM  
Blogger Amanda @ easypeasyorganic said...

Great post! Love the recipe but also the other quick brekkie ideas - so good :)

August 20, 2010 at 2:35 AM  
OpenID sohdalex said...

This looks great! Chocolate and peanut butter are one of my all time favorite combos!

August 23, 2010 at 2:08 PM  
Blogger Marisa said...

Great suggestions - like the one about freezing muffins and then re-heating - why didn't I think of that? Nobrainer.

Also the chocolate granola looks divine!

August 26, 2010 at 7:56 AM  
Blogger Jules Someone said...

Can't do coconut at my house. Any suggestions for a substitution?

September 2, 2010 at 8:50 PM  
Blogger Deliciously Organic said...

Jules Someone: You can substitute the oil with butter.

September 3, 2010 at 6:38 AM  
Blogger Meredith said...

This recipe looks absolutely delish! I can't wait to try it! I also shared it with all my bloggers here: http://meredithlockhart.blogspot.com/2010/10/just-another-granola-recipe.html

October 13, 2010 at 6:26 AM  

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