By Jennifer Provenza at Good Food From The Heart
Whole food plant based, Oil free, Sugar free, Gluten Free, Soy Free
With rich, aromatic apples and cinnamon and crunchy roasted nuts and seeds, this sugar and oil free granola is sweet and delicious and makes a perfect bowl of cereal or yogurt parfait.
A Good Healthy Breakfast
With school and work starting up again, the whole family needs a good, healthy breakfast. Because of the puppy and her small bladder, we are up at 6:30. Then, depending on the day, I might go for a four mile run or do yoga. I have to make breakfast for the kids (and myself), pack lunches, and make sure everyone is dressed with teeth and hair brushed. It’s so important to send everyone out the door with full bellies, ready to learn. One of my all time favorite breakfasts is a yogurt, granola, and fruit parfait. Unfortunately, store bought granola is full of sugar and oil, making it a less healthy choice. Even the so called “low sugar” granola I have found still has more than I would like to consume. I experimented with a lot of granola recipes and found most to require a lot of unhealthy ingredients or to taste pretty bland. I’m so excited to introduce this apple cinnamon oil free vegan granola recipe because it is absolutely delicious and so healthy you can feel great about feeding it to your family.
Q and A
Can I make this granola gluten free? Absolutely! Just use certified gluten free oats.
Can I make this granola nut free? Yes. Substitute more pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds for the nuts in the recipe. Substitute sunflower seed butter for the almond butter.
Can I omit the raisins? Sure. You could substitute any other kind of dried fruit or leave it out entirely (but that will result in a less sweet granola).
Can I use another kind of nut butter? Yes. You can use any kind of nut butter, but just keep in mind that almond butter will give you a more neutral flavor. If you use peanut butter, for instance, you will end up with peanut butter flavored granola, whereas you really can’t taste the almond butter in the final product.
Do I need to stir this? Yes, make sure to stir around the granola half way through the cooking time.
Does this burn easily? You will want to watch this granola carefully, checking on it frequently. If you don’t cook it long enough, the nuts and oats won’t get the delicious, crispy texture you want. But, if you cook it too long, it can quickly burn. Be sure to remove it from the oven as soon as you notice the nuts beginning to brown.
Can I use different nuts? Sure. Use whatever kind of nuts you prefer, but be sure to chop them or use pre chopped nuts.
Can I use roasted nuts and seeds? No. Make sure the nuts and seeds you use are not already roasted or they will be overcooked in this recipe.
Do I have to use grated apple? I haven’t tested it without the grated apple and it adds natural sweetness and great flavor, so I would not omit it.
Which sweetener should I use? Make sure to use a dry sweetner to mix in with the dry ingredients. You can use stevia for a fully sugar free option or you can use an unrefined sugar, such as coconut sugar. Be sure to use a liquid sweetener with the wet ingredients. Again, liquid stevia will give you a sugar and calorie free option or maple syrup will give you an unrefined option.
What kind of almond butter should I use? Just be sure it is unsweetened to keep this recipe sugar free.
Do I have to use apple sauce? Yes. The applesauce adds to the flavor and adds natural sweetness and helps bind the mixture together. Make sure to use unsweetened apple sauce to keep this recipe sugar free.
Why does this have ground flax seeds? The ground flax seeds also help bind it together and provide a lot of nutrients as well.
How To Make This Oil Free Vegan Granola
To make this apple cinnamon vegan granola, start by pre-heating your oven to 350 degrees. Next, mix the oats, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, walnuts, ground flax seeds, pecans, raisins, cinnamon, and either powdered stevia or coconut sugar.
After mixing the dry ingredients, get out a small saucepan and add the applesauce, almond butter, maple syrup or liquid stevia, and vanilla extract. Heat over low heat until smooth and pourable. Then, pour the mixture over the dry mixture and stir well until everything is coated and moistened.
Finally, cover a sheet pan with parchment paper and spread the mixture onto the parchment paper in a thin layer. Bake for 25-30 minutes, stirring half way through the cooking time.
Allow the granola to cool fully before eating. That is, if you can stop yourself from eating it by the handful off the pan. (I can’t!)
This oil free granola tastes amazing with plant based yogurt and fruit. (My favorite brand is So Delicious Unsweetened Coconut Yogurt). It’s also great to just eat from a bowl with plant milk poured on top. Yum!
Oil Free Vegan Granola
- sheet pan
- small sauce pan
- 2 cups oats certified gluten free if necessary
- 1/2 cup walnuts chopped
- 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
- 1/4 cup coconut sugar or 1tablespoon powdered stevia
- 1/4 cup ground flaxseed
- 1/4 cup pecans chopped
- 1/4 cup raisins
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1/4 cup maple syrup or 1/2 teaspoon liquid stevia
- 1/4 cup almond butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup grated apple
- In a large bowl, mix the oats, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, ground flaxseed, coconut sugar or powdered stevia, raisins, and cinnamon.
- In a small saucepan, mix the applesauce, almond butter, maple syrup or liquid stevia, and vanilla extract. Heat over low heat until liquid and pourable.
- Pour the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir until all of the dry ingredients are coated and moist. Add the grated apple and stir.
- Place a layer of parchment paper on a sheet pan and spread the mixture onto the parchment paper in a thin layer. Bake for 25-30 minutes. Halfway through the cooking time, remove from the oven and gently stir, then place back into the oven.
- Allow to cool for at least five minutes before eating. Granola is great served in a bowl with plant milk or as part of a plant based yogurt parfait with fruit.
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