Banana Bread Granola Recipe
Ever since I came back from my trip to Chicago a couple of months ago, I find myself looking for recipes for different types of granola. As I wrote about it here, while living on a small island in the Caribbean, I missed the granola-revolution that happened in the last couple of years in the mainland. It was a nice surprise to see how available they were throughout every supermarket in Chicago.
With that being said, I just don’t understand why people prefer buying granola from a supermarket when they can easily make it in their own kitchen. I can almost hear you say that not everyone loves spending time in the kitchen as much as I do and I know that. But still, I can’t help but want to show people how easy and quick it is to make granola at home.
Therefore, today I come to you with my most recent favorite granola recipe: Chunky Banana Bread Granola. First of all, this granola has no refined sugar in it. It uses only a half a cup of maple syrup. In terms of fat, a 1/3-cup of coconut oil is all you need. And if you consider the fact that you get 9 cups of granola out of this recipe, it is very minimal.
Secondly, every single ingredient used in this granola (ie: walnuts, buckwheat groats, coconut flakes, sunflower seeds, bananas,etc.) is packed with nutrients giving you the energy you need to start your day. I paired it with chocolate almond milk to eat as a bowl of granola/cereal in the morning, but if you prefer, you can totally skip the almond milk and eat it as a snack throughout the day.
I prefer to make my own chocolate almond milk as I find the versions sold in the supermarkets to be too sweet for my taste. Plus, I just don’t like the fact that they use sugar to sweeten it. Instead, to make chocolate almond milk at home, I place some unsweetened/unflavored almond milk, a couple of tablespoons of unsweetened natural cocoa powder, and a couple of pitted Medjool dates in a blender (or a food processor) and blend until they are all combined.
This way, I get to adjust the level of sweetness to my desired level and know exactly what is in it. Sometimes if I feel like it, I put a teaspoon of vanilla extract to give it a little more flavor. Of course if you have time, you are more than welcome to make your own almond milk, which obviously is the healthiest option.
As I am a huge fan of chocolate banana bread, it was a no brainer for me to pair this delicious granola with chocolate almond milk. However, if you prefer to eat it by itself or by other types of milk, I promise it won’t disappoint.
On a final note, the blue flowers you see in the photos just started blooming a couple of weeks ago and I just love them so much. I go down to our small backyard every morning and pick some to display in several vases all over our small apartment. You may think that I went a little crazy with them in every photograph – and you are probably right-, but I just couldn’t help but share with you some of the gorgeous flora of our island during this time of the year.
Chunky Banana Bread Granola with Chocolate Almond Milk
For the Granola:
- 1/3 cup coconut oil melted and cooled
- 3 very ripe bananas
- 1/2 cup organic maple syrup
- 3 cups old-fashioned Gluten-free oats
- 1 cup buckwheat groats
- 1 1/2 cups unsweetened coconut flakes
- 1/2 cups sunflower seeds
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 cup walnuts chopped
For the Chocolate Almond Milk:
- 2 cups almond milk
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 3-4 medjool dates seeded
To top it off: – Optional-
- 1 banana sliced
- 2 tablespoons hemp seeds
For the granola:
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- Place the coconut oil, bananas, and maple syrup in the bowl of a food processor. Process until everything is combined and turned into a thick liquid, 40-45 seconds.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the oats, buckwheat groats, coconut flakes, sunflower seeds, cinnamon, salt, and walnuts.
- Pour the liquid mixture over the dry ingredients. Give it a stir to ensure that the dry ingredients are coated with the liquid mixture as much as possible.
- Spread the granola evenly in the prepared baking sheet. Using the back of a ramekin or a mug, press to compress until it is compact.
- Place in the oven and bake for 15 minutes.
- At the end of 15 minutes, remove it out of the oven. Using a large spatula, flip it over in large sections. Place it back in the oven.
- Repeat the same process 3-4 times every 5 minutes, making smaller chunks each time. *1
- Let the granola cool completely without touching it. *2
For the almond milk:
- Meanwhile, place the almond milk, cocoa powder, and medjool dates in a blender. Blend until combined.
- When ready to serve, place chunks of granola in a bowl, pour some chocolate almond milk over it, and if preferred top it off with some sliced bananas and hemp seeds.
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This recipe is adapted from Sarah Britton’s My New Roots: Inspired Plant-Based Recipes for Every Season cookbook.