Monday, May 27, 2013

Nut-Free Paleo Granola

My breakfast cookies are one of the most buzzed about recipes I've created; they became even more popular when I shared how one reader loves to crumble them up to make granola.

Today I decided to try a totally nut-free version of the granola. I have one reader with a nut allergy who loves and makes my pumpkin breakfast cookies using sunflower seed butter. The amount of baking soda in the base recipe is enough that it reacts with the sunflower seeds, ultimately turning the cookies green. While she claimed not to be bothered by the hue, I'd prefer to go without the green in baked goods!

The green factor is the biggest challenge when using sunflower butter in lieu of nut in baking. Since granola is free-form, however, the baking soda isn't needed.

This is my original breakfast cookie recipe, using organic (unsweetened) sunflower seed butter, no nuts for mix-ins and omitting the baking soda. I reduced the sweetener by a smidge as well and found it plenty sweet. It's a great alternative if you don't want nuts, and a tasty, family-friendly breakfast or snack.

Nut-Free Paleo Granola

1 cup unsweetened organic sunflower seed butter
1 egg
3 tbs. raw honey
3 cups total mix-ins (see below for what I used)
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt

Preheat oven to 350. Combine all ingredients in a stand mixer, or with a handheld electric mixer.

Drop by little dollops onto a Silpat-lined or greased baking sheet. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until starting to turn golden brown. Allow to cool thoroughly for crispest results.

Mix-in suggestions: today I used unsweetened carob chips, shredded coconut and pumpkin seeds. Other nut-free options are hulled hemp hearts, dried fruit and other seeds.

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