Cherry Chocolate Coconut Granola

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Much to my kids’ dismay, we haven’t been down the cereal aisle at our grocery store for a long time.  Last week, when I had to buy some cereal to make S’mores Rice Krispies Treats, their little eyes lit up and they got so excited at the thought that maybe I was going to cave and let them buy something. Nope.

We do buy the occasional organic cereal at our local co-op, but it’s a rare treat.  Mostly, the girls eat granola in lieu of cereal products, but lately their favorite breakfast is a banana with almond butter and raisins.

My kids are weird.   But healthy, so I guess it’s ok.

Since I need my morning granola fix, I decided it was time to start experimenting with recipes and come up with a homemade version that replaces my favorite (expensive) store-bought brand.  This recipe has won out as our favorite so far, which is awesome because it’s EASY.  Besides toasting the nuts, oats and coconut, it’s just a matter of mixing with honey and baking for a few minutes on a cookie sheet.  You can add whatever fruit or mix-ins you like, and you can eat this plain, with milk, or over yogurt.

It’s yum, it’s healthy and holy cow, it’s so simple to make.  It makes me really, really happy to have healthy, homemade food in my pantry so this recipe is a winner for sure.

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While we’re talking about winning recipes, let’s also talk about a new feature I’ve added here on Lemon Sugar, the Recipe Box.  I’ve partnered with ZipList to bring you a really great tool to store your online recipes, create a meal plan and generate shopping lists.  These days, many of us get our meal ideas from Pinterest, foodie sites and food blogs, so this really is a great way to organize your “mental pantry.”

If you scroll back up to the top of the page, in the gray menu bar you’ll see a drop-down menu with a few options to choose from.Header Zip List

After a quick sign-up, you will have access to your recipe box all over the web.  You can access it from here at Lemon Sugar, from ZipList.com, or any other participating site.   Besides storing your favorite recipes all in one place, it will help you shop by creating grocery lists, help you plan your meals for the week (with the best tool I’ve seen yet) and, get this, it will even help you find the best deals on groceries in your area.

Awesome, huh?  If you’re already a ZipList user, you know how exciting this is for me!  I’m glad to be part of the ZipList family.

My recipe cards are getting a makeover, too.  One by one I’ve been converting my old recipes over to ZipList friendly cards, and once that’s complete, all of my Lemon Sugar recipes will be Recipe Box AND printer friendly, and they’ll look great, too.  I can’t wait to roll out the new look to you in the next week or so.  In the meantime, if you need me I’ll be re-typing recipes!

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Back to the granola for a second – I forgot to tell you that you can store it in an airtight container just as you would your favorite cereal.  Although I make about a weeks worth at a time, I’m sure it would keep for a few weeks and be fine.  You can also double this recipe with no problem, just make sure your skillet is big enough to toast six cups of oats at once – if not just toast them in batches.

My favorite way to eat this granola is with a bit of almond milk – which ups the healthy factor a bit and really makes you feel better about chunks of chocolate in your breakfast cereal.

If you love this recipe, don’t forget to save it in your recipe box, and be sure to share it with your friends.  Everyone needs this in their life, right?

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Hope you enjoy the granola, and I hope the new Recipe Box feature helps you out, as well.

Don’t forget, if you haven’t yet, make sure you stop by at my Facebook page and follow along…you can also find me on TwitterInstagram and Pinterest if Facebook isn’t your thing.

♥erin

Cherry Chocolate Coconut Granola
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
This homemade granola is full of flavor with toasted walnuts, almonds and coconut, layered with dried sweet cherries and rich chocolate chunks. Recipe source: Annie's Eats
Serves: ~ 7 cups granola
Ingredients
  • 1 cup flaked/shredded coconut (sweetened or unsweetened)
  • ⅓ cup chopped walnuts
  • ⅓ cup chopped almonds (whole, slivers or slices are fine)
  • 3 cups old fashioned oats
  • 3 Tablespoons canola oil
  • ½ cup honey
  • 2 Tablespoons ground flaxseed (optional)
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup dried cherries, chopped or whole
  • 4 ounces coarsely chopped chocolate (bittersweet or semi-sweet is best)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees (F).
  2. Prepare a large sheet pan with parchment paper or a silicon mat. Set aside.
  3. In a large skillet over medium heat, toast the coconut until just golden brown. Pour into a bowl and set aside.
  4. In the same skillet, toast the walnuts and almonds until fragrant and just toasted, about 2 minutes. Pour into a large bowl.
  5. In the same skillet, toast the oats with the canola oil until they just begin to turn golden brown. Pour into the bowl with the nuts.
  6. Add the flaxseed, cinnamon and salt, and toss together.
  7. Pour the honey over the mixture (I like to heat my honey for just about 30 seconds to make it easier to incorporate) and stir to completely combine.
  8. Pour mixture on to the baking sheet, and allow to bake for 15 or 20 minutes or until golden brown. While baking, gently stir the mixture twice.
  9. Meanwhile, chop your cherries (if desired) and coarsely chop your chocolate. Set aside.
  10. Remove mixture from the oven. Add the cherries and coconut to the pan, and toss to combine.
  11. Press mixture into a thick layer, covering half of your sheet pan. Allow to cool completely.
  12. Once cool, break granola into large chunks, and toss with chocolate.
  13. Serve with milk, eat plain as a snack, or serve over yogurt.
  14. Enjoy!
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  • Nicole

    Chocolate for breakfast … Sign me up! Looks Great :)