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Friday, April 16, 2010

Carrot Cake Granola

Anything that involves carrot and cake is fine by me in my book.  At some point, carrot cake became my go-to dessert of choice.  It surpassed chocolate and went far beyond cheesecake.  I started dreaming about a slice of carrot cake that I saw at a grocery store.  I finally gave in.  It was not worth it, so now I bake my own.  But, Ron doesn't eat carrot cake.  So, I'm normally left with a gigantic cake to eat by myself.  That's not good, so I simply don't make it.  I did recently find a fantastic recipe for cupcakes that is easy to cut in half.  I may have to give it a shot.

I recently saw "carrot cake granola" on one of my frequently visited food blogs.  WOAH, WHAT??  Carrot Cake granola?  How can they get all of those amazing flavors into one granola?  Well, they did.  It's incredible.  It's easy.  It's healthy.  And it smells/tastes/delivers like a carrot cake does.  

On a side note, I've never actually toasted nuts or coconut.  I've always been too afraid to burn it because they burn so easily.  However, this recipe called me for me to add the nuts / coconut about 10 minutes before taking it out of the oven.  Wow.  The flavors that came from the toasted nuts and coconut was incredible.  From now on, if a recipe calls for me to toast the nuts.  I'm toasting the nuts!
Carrot Cake Granola
adapted from Healthy Food for Living
  • 1.5 c rolled oats
  • 1.5 c puffed brown rice cereal
  • 1/4 c unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/2 c finely grated carrots
  • 1/4 c agave nectar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 c chopped pecans
  • 1/2 c unsweetened flake coconut
  • 1/2 c raisins
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment.
  2. Put the oats and cereal into a large bowl; set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk the applesauce, carrot, agave, extract, spices and salt.  Whisk until very smooth.
  4. Pour wet ingredients over cereal and stir until evenly coated.  Spread mixture onto baking sheet in an even layer.
  5. Bake for about 30 minutes.  Remove sheet from oven and stir in the nuts and coconut.
  6. Bake for an additional 8-12 minutes, or until granola is brown and crisp.
  7. Remove granola from oven, toss with raisins, and cool completely.  

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