Guest post by Kelly of The Nourishing Home
As the only gluten-free (and grain-free) gal in a house full of grain-loving guys, it can be quite a challenge at times to find healthy meals that make everyone happy.
So in a quest to make mealtime a whole lot simpler (and to avoid becoming a short-order cook), I’ve made it my mission to transform everyday family favorites into delicious grain-free creations that the whole family can enjoy – whether they’re GF or not!
One of those favorites in our home is granola. Whether we’re adding it to our favorite Fruit & Yogurt Parfaits, using it to make beautiful holiday gifts-in-a-jar, or just enjoying it solo, you might say we’re just a little nuts about granola.
That’s why when Erin invited me over to share a special fall-inspired recipe with y’all, the first one that came to mind is my new Pumpkin Spice Granola! This delightful granola is not only gluten-free and grain-free – it’s also dairy-free and egg-free as well.
This crunchy pumpkin pie flavored treat is a fall-inspired spin on my popular Vanilla Cinnamon Crunch Granola. If it’s your first time making granola, be sure to check out my “How to Make Grain-Free Granola” photo tutorial to learn just how easy (and delicious!) it is to make your own homemade granola.
In fact, I should probably warn you … with just one bite, you may find yourself becoming a bit nutty over homemade granola, too!
- Nut Mixture
- • 1½ cups raw whole almonds
- • 1 cup raw whole cashews
- • ½ cup raw pecans
- • ½ cup raw pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
- • 1 teaspoon sea salt
- All-Natural Sweetener
- • ¼ cup coconut butter, softened
- • ½ cup pure dark maple syrup
- • 2 tablespoons honey
- • 2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
- • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (learn how to make your own!)
- • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- • 1 teaspoon coconut flour (or 2 teaspoons ground flax seed)
- • ¾ cup raisins (or currants)
- For the Nut Mixture: Place the nuts and salt in a large bowl and cover with warm water. Cover the bowl with a clean kitchen towel, and allow the nuts to soak 18–24 hours. When soaking time is completed, drain and rinse nuts. Place on a clean kitchen towel to absorb excess moisture.
- For the All-Natural Sweetener: In a large bowl, whisk together the softened coconut butter, maple syrup and honey until smooth and creamy. Then add the remaining ingredients (vanilla, pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon and coconut flour). Whisk until well combined; set aside
- For the Granola: Preheat oven to 210°F. Line a 12´ 17-inch rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
- 1. Using a food processor, place a couple of handfuls of the soaked nuts into the processor bowl and pulse to chop the nuts until they are about the size of oats. (Do not overprocess or you will create nut meal.)
- 2. Add the finely chopped nuts to the bowl with the maple-honey mixture. Continue to pulse the whole nuts a few handfuls at a time until finished and continue adding them to the bowl with the maple-honey mixture. Once all the nuts are ground, use a rubber spatula to fold them into the maple-honey mixture until well combined.
- 3. Spoon the granola mixture onto the parchment-lined baking sheet. Use an offset spatula to evenly spread the granola across the pan into a thin layer. Bake the granola for 2 hours, then remove from the oven and gently flip section by section using a spatula, making sure to separate any large pieces into small cereal clusters. (Be sure to check out "How to Make Grain-Free Granola" for an easy step-by-step photo tutorial located at the bottom of the post.)
- 4. Return granola to the oven and bake another 2 hours. Then repeat the process of gently flipping the granola. Return granola to the oven one more time and bake another 30–45 minutes.
- 5. Turn off the oven. Place the baking sheet of granola on the stovetop to cool. After about 5 minutes, check the granola for the crunch-factor. If it’s crunchy enough for you, allow it to continue cooling. (It will get crunchier as it cools.) If it isn’t crunchy enough, return it to the warm oven and allow it to sit in the warm oven for 20–30 minutes more until it reaches desired level of crispness.
- 6. Allow the granola to completely cool, then immediately transfer it to mason jars, or other airtight containers. Store in the pantry for up to 2 weeks or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Enjoy with a splash of your favorite milk, or use it to top delicious Fruit & Yogurt Parfaits.
Please note: It’s common for raw nuts to change color when soaked together. Don’t worry, no one will notice any unusual hues once the nuts have been ground, mixed with sweetener, and baked.
Do you enjoy transforming old favorites into healthy whole food dishes? What are your favorite gluten-free or grain-free recipe makeovers?
Kelly loves the Lord, her family, and sharing her passion for grain-free cooking and meal planning with others. She’s a full-time homemaker, author and blogger who loves spending time with her awesome hubby and two sweet boys. Kelly’s real food journey began six years ago when she was diagnosed with a chronic autoimmune disorder. Since then, the Lord has blessed her with an amazing recovery – a testament to His grace and the health benefits of eating real food. Kelly shares her knowledge and love for grain-free cooking at The Nourishing Home, Facebook and Pinterest.