Banana-Bread Granola (Raw and Baked!)

Welcome to my adventures in Granola-making:  Raw AND Baked, all refined sugar free, almost oil free and oh so delicious!

What I am Thankful For Right Now:

  1. Finding a lovely horse to ride only 8 minutes from my house
  2. The delicious and nutritious food that comes out of Rawlicious on Markham Mainstreet
  3. The mild spring/summer nights setting in, perfect for running with the pup
  4. The hot morning sun upon my back as I write this, hopefully giving me the beginnings of a tan.

WIth the coming of summer, my cravings for Raw food have set in. Fresh juicy watermelon, crisp kale salads, crunchy cucumbers tossed with mint and lemon and spiralized zuchinni noodles in tangy pad thai dressing.  As the temperatures climb, I become very disinclined to turn on the oven .

Instead, I fire up my braun multiquick 5.  This week, I decided to make Banana-Bread granola.  I often made this low fat and sugar free granola recipe over the winter, but I had always baked it in the oven.  And in the polar vortex cold we had here, I used the oven almost everyday just for that warming blast of heat to defrost my fingers!  But with the dehabilitating cold gone, I figuredI’d try making my Banana Bread Granola raw, using my lovely Excalibur dehydrator.

It was too easy.  Even easier than the oven-baking version I believe.  Once in the dehydrator, no stirring or tossing is required and no worries about overdone or burnt granola.

The only change I made from my winter overn-baked recipe was the addition of chopped dates and diced apple before spreading the granola onto the trays, for some additional sweetness and variation in texture.

As I tend to make this granola minimally sweet (a personal preference) these fruity additions made it the perfect grab and go snack to enjoy even without other toppings such as fruit, yoghurt, or milk.  Just simple, raw, banana-y granola goodness.

There is no refined sugar in this recipe, relying on overly ripe bananas, apple sauce and dates for sweetness.  I add a tablespoon of blackstrap mollasses to heighten the banana-bread like flavour of this recipe as well as a tablespoon of agave if I am craving a bit more sugar in my mornings, but this is definitely optional.   WIth the hearty and exciting combinination of nuts, seeds, grains, and spices, your tastebuds will not even notice the absence of refined sugars and fats.   Only banana bread bliss in the form of nutritious and delicious granola.

I have included both the oven and dehydrated (raw) versions of this fabulous granola.  Give them a try and let them knock the socks off your usual breakfast cereal.

Ingredients:

  • 4 Ripe Bananas
  • ¾ cup apple sauce
  • 6 large medjool dates, mashed in hot water
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • ¼ teaspoon almond extract
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 -1.5 teaspoonnutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon ginger
  • 1 tablespoon molasses
  • ½ tablespoon agave
  • 6 cups Oats
  • 2 cups quinoa or rice puffs
  • 1 -1.5 cups Coconut shredded
  • 1/3 cup Flaxseed
  • 1 cup Pumpkin Seeds OR sunflower seeds
  • 1 1/2 cups Almonds (or any other desired nut)
  • 1 cup Hemp seeds
  • 1 cup dried pineapple wedges (or other dried fruit)
  • 1 cup raisins or chopped dates

FOR RAW GRANOLA:

  • 1-2 apples, diced
  • 8 Medjool dates, diced