Dark Chocolate Granola

Saw a recipe. Didn’t pin it.  Can’t find it.

Yep, that’s about right.  I looked at it.  Mentally compared it to my recipe I have made for years.  And apparently decided that was all I needed to know.

WOW!  It is COLD outside. My phone tells me it is 22 degrees.  Brrrrrr.

What do you do when it is cold? Or at least you are shut in for a while?  Me?  I cook.  Interesting enough, I never PLAN what I am going to cook.  I just plan to cook.  Then, I hope I have everything for whatever I decide to cook.

Today with it being so cold, naturally, I have chosen chili for supper.  But, let’s face it, chili isn’t something that takes a lot of effort.  Not that I am wanting to put a lot of effort in, but really, if I am going to cook, I want to at least say I spent a little time in the kitchen.

I am also hosting our church staff Christmas party next week. Which gives me another great reason to be in the kitchen.  I’ve been trying to decide what to cook. Sometimes the problem with loving to cook, is actually making a decision.  At least it is for me.  Being in the kitchen all day long is not a negative for me.  I love it.  So, narrowing down options is often my problem.

As I was looking on pinterest for ideas for our Christmas party, I came across a chocolate granola recipe.  Since I had just bought oats to make another batch of granola, I thought I would look.  And it looked GOOD!!!  Wish I could share where I found it, but I can’t.

I have used my granola recipe for a few years.  So, today I added some elements from the recipe I found.  I’ll give you both recipes.

Basic Granola:

4 cups oats ( I use certified gluten-free organic from Sprouts)

1 cup chopped almonds

1/2 cup flaxseed meal

1/4 cup brown sugar

1/3 cup oil ( I use coconut, but EVOO or other oil can be substituted)

1/3 cup molasses

1/3 cup water

1 tsp. cinnamon

1 tsp. vanilla

Pre-heat oven to 300 degrees.

Mix dry ingredients in large bowl.

Combine liquid ingredients in separate bowl.  Stir until well mixed.  Gradually pour liquid ingredients on to dry, stirring as you pour.   Mix until dry ingredients are completely coated.

Spread on to cookie sheet. Because I like my granola bar-like, I pack it in. Cook for 40 minutes or until oats start to brown.

Remove from oven to cooling rack. I leave mine in the pan until completely cooled, to allow for more chunks. Store in air tight container.

Add-ins for todays granola:

Chocolate Granola:

Basic recipe

1 cup quinoa (thoroughly rinse to remove bitter taste)

1/4 cup dark chocolate cocoa

Follow instructions as for basic recipe.

Dark Chocolate Granola

Questions before you ask:

Why molasses? Because my mother is allergic to honey. I decided years ago to just get in the habit of using something else.

Can I add other things?  Sure!  Make it your own recipe.  That’s the joy of cooking granola yourself.  Put in what you want.

Where’s the dried fruit? When I started making my granola, I opted out of dried fruit because of the sugar.  Felt I already had enough in there.  Now….if I were to take out some of the other sugar…..But we don’t miss the fruit at all now.

Speaking of time in the kitchen…..better find something else to cook.  This one didn’t count either!