Thursday, March 13, 2014

Protein Power Granola (Vegan, Oat Free, and No Bake)

When I was younger, granola was always in my hand--watching television, at the dinner table, and in my vanilla yogurts.  It was the extra something that gave me a little crunch in my life.  I loved granola so much I would ask my mom to buy them by the boxes in the grocery store, and we would go through the boxes in a snap.  Granola has oats, so it can be hard to digest, so I created an oat free version that still has that crunchiness we crave.  It has protein from the seeds and everything is dehydrated so we can preserve what would be lost in a baked version.  Raw foods are usually the way to go for lots of jam-packed nutrition.  I don't eat all the way raw though, because cooked foods can be beneficial in giving your body a rest, especially in the fall in winter. When the seasons change, and spring and summer roll around the corner, I usually tend to eat more raw foods and I feel my best eating that way.  I also try to buy other foods I don't eat as much and purchase them so I can eat a variety of vitamins and nutrients to get can the health benefits of different foods.  

My mom was telling me this smells a little bit like coffee, even though none of that is inside this granola; I figured it was because of the cacao nibs and seeds.  This granola was so addicting, probably because I haven't had it for like a year.  So after the successful first batch, I was headed for the second.  I would of never thought that I could make successful, raw, and oat free granola two years ago.  That thought didn't even rush into my head until last week.  The very first batch of granola (a batch with oats in it) was soggy and gross.  Over a year and a half ago, I was soaking oats over-night, and the next day I made my mixture, popped it in the oven, and it turned out horrible.  I guess practice makes perfect.  

In the past, there has been many times where I failed to make the perfect batch a muffins, or the tastiest raw foods, and unfortunately it turned my world upside-down when it comes to baking and fixing foods.  I stopped whipping up foods in the kitchen since I was making a lot of foods that didn't taste that good, because they weren't as scrumptious as the store bought raw goodies, or the crackers stocked up on the health food store shelf.  I guess I had a love-hate relationship with cooking and fixing raw food in the past.  Thankfully, the tables turned and I discovered how to make foods that taste better than store bought goods, and make them whatever way I wanted them (sugar, grain, dairy free, etc.) but still divine.  Luckily, as time flew by, I found more food choices and started eating more foods I couldn't before.  

If you asked me how you can heal yourself so you can eat more raw foods, or more foods with sugar, and so on and so forth (there is a lot of solutions, but some of the most beneficial ways in healing the body is in these four points.) I would first tell you to eat some kind of probiotic like kefir, sauerkraut, any kind of fermented vegetables, a good probiotic supplements, miso, etc.  The second one would be eating green salads (with lots of leafy lettuce) and with a healthy dressing everyday.  This one is so beneficial, because eating a salad, especially with lots of vegetables, can help nutritionally, and help you digest your foods well.  Another super important one would be consistency.  I can't even tell you in a few words how important I think this is.  You don't have to eat 100% healthy, but eating a mostly whole foods diet is vital for great health.  When it comes to what foods you put into your mouth, you have to think about if it's going to harm you; if you think about all of the processed foods you ate over the past years, it adds up, even an unhealthy snack everyday.  

I personally LOVE to a 100% healthy.  I only do it to live the cleanest, healthiest, and disease free life I am capable of living.  If your wondering if one piece chocolate would do any harm--no, it wouldn't, but I personally don't eat anything that's not whole because I want to be in complete harmony with my body; that is just one of the reasons why I choose not to eat any unhealthy foods.  Everyone is different, and has different paradigms, so do whatever you want and feels right to you.  The last thing that can be the most important, is the way your feeding yourself spiritually, physically, and emotionally.  If your life is not balanced out and your beating yourself up or feeling stressed or not working out enough, these things can dramatically affect your health.  Remember to always give yourself what you need when you need it, and make time for the important things in life. 

I am no health expert, but if you have any questions on what you should do to heal ______ or whatever it is, I would be happy to answer whatever I can with the knowledge I have and experiences Iv'e been through.  Also, if any of you were wondering how to make special diet friendly foods, I would gladly share some links to websites with recipes that are perfect for that special, temporary diet, or maybe I can show how to substitute different foods to have successful baked or fixed meals.  Whatever it is, I would love to help any of you out there.

Wishing everyone a crunchy day of goodness,

Protein Power Granola (Vegan, Oat Free, and No Bake)

  • 3 tbsps cacao nibs 
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/4 cup coconut shreds 
  • 1/2 cup crispy brown rice
  • 1/4 buckwheat groats
  • 2 tbsps chia seeds (soaked)
  • 3 tbsps coconut nectar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tbsps cashew butter

1. In a bowl, mix in the cacao nibs, all the seeds, coconut shreds, crispy brown rice, buckwheat groats, and chia seeds together.

2. In a separate bowl, mix in the coconut nectar and vanilla extract.  Pour in the mixture into the other bowl and mix well.

3. Next, mix in the cashew butter until well combined.

4. Place the sticky granola in a dehydrator and dehydrate on 105F. for 12 hours.

Note: to make it easier--with a spoon, you can divide the granola into sections so you can break the pieces when they are fully dehydrated.

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