Granola is one of those sneaky “health foods” we always assume is ultra-nutritious. But if you look at the nutrition labels on most commercial brands (yes, even the healthy-leaning ones), granola isn’t the almighty breakfast food we think it is.
Luckily, we don’t have to banish it from our breakfast bowls for good. By making our own clean granola recipe with whole foods and cleanse-approved ingredients, we’re in complete control of the foods we use to fuel our bodies.
THE SCOOP ON BUCKWHEAT
This granola recipe relies on raw buckwheat groats for a lot of its nutritional value. Despite its name, buckwheat doesn’t contain any wheat at all. It’s actually a fruit seed that’s related to rhubarb and sorrel. This makes it a fantastic substitute for people who are sensitive to wheat and other grains that contain gluten. What’s more, buckwheat is high in protein and fiber, making it a staple food for vegetarian and vegan pantries.
Loaded with amino acids, vitamins, minerals, and disease-fighting antioxidants, buckwheat supports a healthy heart and can even help prevent diabetes. It’s low on the glycemic index and contains very few calories and practically zero fat. Plus, its high fiber content keeps us feeling full and prevents oxidative stress within the digestive track. If buckwheat sounds like the perfect food, you’re not far off. It’s so nutritious that it’s often referred to as a “superfood.”
BRING ON THE NUTS AND SEEDS
Nuts and seeds have tremendous nutritional value, yet many of us don’t get enough in our diets. This granola is packed with almonds, raw pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, and flax seeds to nourish our bodies with the nutrients we need to stay energized and alert. Almonds provide us with calcium, magnesium, and fiber. Pumpkin seeds are fantastic for our immune systems with lots of antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids and zinc, while sunflower and flax seeds have powerful anti-heart disease properties.
Dates impart a natural sweetness to this granola, as does coconut nectar. Coconut nectar is very low on the glycemic index, making it a better option for diabetics and for those who want to shed excess body weight. Coconut nectar also provides us with an abundance of minerals, 17 amino acids, vitamin C, and broad-spectrum B vitamins.
Eat this healthy, homemade granola by the handful or sprinkle it atop your favorite non-dairy yogurt for a nutritious, filling breakfast.
1 cup raw buckwheat groats
¼ cup raw sliced almonds
¼ cup raw pumpkin seeds
¼ cup raw sunflower seeds
½ cup golden flaxseeds
2 tablespoons shredded coconut
2 tablespoons coconut nectar (adjust to desired sweetness)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
1 tablespoon coconut oil, melted
Measure out 1 cup of raw buckwheat groats.
Pour buckwheat into a medium-sized bowl and cover with several inches of water. Soak for at least an hour.
Preheat oven to 300F degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Measure out the sliced almonds, raw pumpkin seeds, raw sunflower seeds, golden flax seeds, and shredded coconut. Cut up the dates into small chunks.
Drain and rinse buckwheat and transfer to a large bowl. Add the almonds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, flax seeds, shredded coconut, and dates.
Add the coconut nectar, vanilla extract, and salt. Drizzle in the melted coconut oil. Stir granola with a rubber spatula to thoroughly combine all ingredients.
Spread granola in a thin, even layer on the prepared baking sheet.
Bake granola for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until golden brown. Set aside to cool before transferring to an airtight container.
Serve with coconut yogurt or your favorite non-dairy milk and cleanse-approved fruit.
Original Cleanola recipe by Debbie Young
Updated recipe and photos by Kate Kasbee
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