High-Protein Superfood Cocoa-Nutty Granola

When I’m in a hurry, this instant healthy breakfast saves the day! Loaded with protein and crunchy chocolate morsels, it is gluten-free, Paleo, bursting with flavor from toasted nuts and cinnamon. High in protein, low in sugar, it tastes delicious with any Homemade Nut Milk. I make a batch of granola about once a month, and enjoy it whenever I need a fast nutritious breakfast. Instead of oatmeal, the standard filler grain in most granolas, this grain-free recipe uses high-protein quinoa and buckwheat, which are not grains or grasses. Quinoa is a seed in the Amaranth family, related to beets. Buckwheat is a seed related to rhubarb. Also called kasha or groats, buckwheat has been enjoyed throughout Asia for millenniums. Quinoa and buckwheat are best soaked 8 – 10 hours or overnight. Soaking softens and removes indigestible coatings from seeds, making them more easily absorbed. This granola is extremely low in carbs. It will not raise blood sugar or cause weight gain if you use one of the suggested non-glycemic sweeteners.

Other superfood ingredients are high Omega-3 chia seeds, which add protein and bind the granola together. Pure cacao is a high-anti-oxidant energizer. Hemp seeds are a complete protein, rich in healthy fats and essential fatty acids. Pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, and almonds are all loaded with protein and healthy nutrition. I love to add a bit of maca powder, that South American adaptogen root that enhances energy and stamina, and it is optional. Have fun, and know that this recipe is quite flexible. I suggest you follow it exactly the first time, and after that go ahead and experiment with different ingredients. Yield: 2 pans 9 x 13-inches in size, or 2 quarts granola, approximately 10 servings.

bake-granola

Before baking, it’s sort of mushy. While it’s baking stir every 20 minutes or so to break up any clumps, and it will get crispy.

High-Protein Superfood Cocoa-Nutty Granola

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Ingredients

    Wet Ingredients:
  • 2/3 cup coconut oil
  • 1 1/2 cups sweetener such as Just Like Sugar Table Top natural chicory root sweetener, or 1/4 cup PureLo Lo Han Sweetener by Swanson, or 1 cup raw honey, or your favorite sweetener.
  • 1 teaspoon unprocessed salt
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon maple flavor (optional)
  • 6 tablespoons warm water (omit this if using honey or liquid sweetener)
  • Dry Ingredients:
  • 1 cup raw buckwheat groats, soaked overnight
  • 1 cup quinoa, soaked overnight
  • 1/4 cup chia seeds, white or black, soaked overnight
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup your favorite protein powder
  • 1/2 cup almond meal (or leftover pulp from homemade nut milk)
  • 1/2 cup hemp nuts
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1 cup almonds, coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 3 tablespoons pure cacao powder
  • Optional Superfoods:
  • 1 tablespoon maca powder
  • 1 tablespoon sacha-inchi powder
  • 1 tablespoon bee pollen
  • 1/4 cup almond butter
  • 1 dropperful reishi mushroom extract

Instructions

  1. In a large stainless steel or glass mixing bowl, soak the buckwheat, quinoa, and chia together overnight in filtered water at room temperature.
  2. Preheat the oven to 300º F. Cover two 9 x 13 baking dishes with parchment paper. You need sides on these pans, flat baking trays won't work.
  3. In a small pan over low heat, stir together the coconut oil, sweetener, salt, vanilla, maple, and water if using. Heat very slowly but do not boil. Stir until fairly smooth, and then remove from heat.
  4. Drain the buckwheat, quinoa, and chia mixture into a colander, and allow to drip for a few minutes to remove liquid.
  5. In a large mixing bowl, add all the dry ingredients: cinnamon, protein powder, almond meal, hemp nuts, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, almonds, coconut flakes, and cacao. Add any optional superfoods you wish. Add the drained buckwheat, quinoa, and chia. Now pour the wet ingredients into the mixture, and stir everything until completely mixed.
  6. Bake for 1 to 1.5 hours, stirring every 15 or 20 minutes. Granola burns easily, so keep an eye on it. I set two timers, one for 1.5 hours, and one for every 20 minutes. When your time is up, the granola may seem soggy, but don't worry, it will crisp as it cools. Remove from the oven. Allow to cool 30 minutes. Store in covered glass jars for several weeks at room temperature, or up to 3 months in the refrigerator.

 

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