HEALTHY EATING

Granola any time

It is packed with energy and its recipe can be tweaked in endless ways

In Summary

• Granola is popular with travellers, hikers, campers and outdoor-oriented people

Plate of granola
Plate of granola
Image: FRANCO ZAIDI

Your basics for a perfectly healthy granola include oats, a sweetener, some oil, a variety of edible seeds and nuts or dried fruit. You can tweak it slightly using different sweeteners, seasonings or swapping the nuts or fruit for your favourite. The possibilities are endless.

Granola is packed with a punch of energy and lots of nutritional values, such as the ability to lower cholesterol, regulate digestion, aid in weight loss, improve heart health, prevent anaemia and promote proper organ function. Intake of granola can also help lower blood pressure, increase cognitive activity, improve skin quality, build stronger bones, manage diabetes, stimulate new tissue and hormonal growth and may even prevent cancer.

Most commonly, granola is regularly used by people on the go, as well as by hikers, campers and outdoor-oriented people who won’t have time to prepare a meal but still need the proper energy for the body to function at its best.

Having it like a cereal with milk and freshly chopped fruits or sprinkle over yoghurt is a perfectly simple healthy breakfast that you can take anywhere.

INGREDIENTS

½ cup canola oil or other neutral oil, such as coconut or olive oil

½ cup honey or maple syrup

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

½ teaspoon salt

3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats

1 cup sliced almonds

½ cup of pumpkin seeds

1 cup raisins or other dried, chopped fruit

 

INSTRUCTIONS

Arrange the oven rack in the middle of the oven and pre heat at 300°F/150°C. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.

Place the oil, honey, cinnamon and salt in a large bowl and whisk to combine.

Add the oats and almonds and pumpkin seeds stir to coat well. There is no harm in adding a little more oats or almonds, granola is very forgiving.

Transfer the mixture to the prepared baking sheet and spread into an even layer. If the granola is clumpy, use a spatula to press it into the pan.

Bake, stirring halfway through, for about 20 minutes. The granola is ready when golden-brown and the almonds have toasted. It will still feel wet coming out of the oven but will dry as it cools.

Remove from oven and place the baking sheet on a wire rack then sprinkle on the raisins or fruit. If you want clumps of granola, press and tamp down the granola before it cools, this will help it stick together. Cool completely before storing.

Granola can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 month.