Breakfast is my absolute favourite meal of the day. I think it's to do with the fact that it's the quickest meal to prepare, and you can have so much fun with it. It really helps set the mood for the day in my opinion.
Sad thing is, it’s so easy to get stuck into a routine of making the same breakfast everyday, and it’s totally understandable! It’s the one meal where most of us are usually rushing out the door as we’re wolfing it down, so who has time to get all fancy-shmancy with it??
Another problem with brekkie, is that a lot of us tend to buy cereals (out of convenience or lack of knowing what else to eat) that are crammed with refined sugars, preservatives and heavily processed foods. That already creates a conundrum, since in essence, you are starting your day on a sugar high which your body will want to sustain for the rest of the day (enter mid afternoon slump chocolate bar), meaning you will never win the battle against sugar.
Besides who has ever been full after eating a bowl of cereal? Seriously...is it just me??
So I thought a super easy granola recipe would be a good idea to help you sort out your mornings (but also because one of you awesome babes requested for it). And here it is!
Now I know this granola recipe contains maple syrup (which does contain sugar), but it’s pure maple syrup. And there IS a difference. Pure maple syrup isn’t heavily processed as the refined/commercial kind of maple syrup we are used to seeing, so even though it contains sugar, it’s the natural kind which still has beneficial nutrients fully intact.
Another thing is, when you pair natural sugars with healthy fats, fibre and protein, it doesn’t spike up your sugar levels say as when you have cereal with refined sugars and wheat. The reason being that the oats, nuts and seeds in this granola recipe break down slowly into the bloodstream, which gives your body less of a rollercoaster ride in terms of blood sugar levels.
So back to the granola.
This tahini cashew granola is crunchy, savoury & sweet which makes it so moreish. It goes perfectly with yoghurt (or coconut yoghurt my fave!) or with milk, sprinkled on porridge and smoothie bowls, or as a standalone *I deserve some RESPEK* snack. It definitely deserves a spot in your kitchen pantry coz this should be a household staple!
And oh my garsh, let’s not even talk about the smell of the kitchen when this batch of granola comes out of the oven. It’s just insane. And if you eat it while it’s still warm, you will just die and go to heaven. Set your house in order.
I mean, the coconut flakes come out toasted and crunchy, and then the cashews come out roasted and creamy and then the mix of tahini and pure maple syrup just brings everything together, and you will feel the group hug happening in your mouth. Really.
Once you make this, you will never go back to shop bought granola, coz this tastes better, you can adapt it to your own taste, and it works out cheaper. Is this a hack or is this a hack??
So give this tahini cashew granola recipe a go and let me know whatchu think! You know the drill, take a picture and tag it #earthnspoon on Instagram to make my day.
What you’ll need:
Baking paper (parchment paper)
Large airtight jar
220g (2 cups) rolled oats* (see notes)
70g (½ cup) cashews
50g (1 cup) coconut flakes
50g (⅓ cup) sunflower seeds
40g (¼ cup) pumpkin seeds
3 tbsp pure maple syrup
2 tbsp tahini
1 tbsp coconut oil* (see notes)
1 tsp vanilla extract* (see notes)
½ tsp sea salt
Preheat oven to 150C (300F).
Add all the dry ingredients (except for sea salt) to the mixing bowl and mix together thoroughly.
In a small saucepan over medium/low heat, warm the maple syrup, tahini, coconut oil, vanilla extract and sea salt together and pour over dry ingredients and mix well.
Place baking sheet over the baking tray and spread the mixture evenly onto the baking sheet and bake for 25-30 mins. During the halfway point stir the granola and turn the tray around to bake evenly.
Remove from the oven when granola is lightly browned. Allow to cool and store in an airtight jar and it should keep for a few weeks.
If you’re gluten intolerant you can use gluten free rolled oats for this recipe.
If you suffer from nut allergies you can replace the cashew nuts with any seeds of your choice like flaxseeds, chia seeds, pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds.
The coconut oil should be solid at room temperature.
Make sure to use good quality vanilla extract that consists of vanilla beans soaked in an alcohol solution and avoid the synthetic cheap versions as they have no nutritional value.
Feel free to swap the ingredients as this recipe is meant to be flexible, so have fun with it!
Oats - lowers cholesterol levels, blood pressure and stabilises blood sugar levels which in turn lowers risk of type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Oats also improve gut health and are rich in dietary fibre keeping you full for longer.
Cashews - contain several antioxidants as well as fibre and protein. A good source of copper which is needed to produce haemoglobin in the body.
Coconut - contains lauric acid which has antibacterial & antiviral properties, whereas capric acid which is also found in coconuts, improves the immune system and protects against alcohol damage to the liver.
Sunflower seeds - a good source of pantothenic acid, phosphorus, copper and manganese which all together help to release energy from food, build strong bones and teeth, produce red and white blood cells and make and activate enzymes. Its high Vitamin E content aids in skin health as well as reduces blood sugar levels.
Pumpkin seeds - rich in antioxidants which may help reduce inflammation and protect against disease. Also a rich source of magnesium which is important for your heart health, bone health, blood pressure and blood sugar levels. Pumpkin seeds are also a great source of fibre.
Pure maple syrup - has a lower glycemic index than cane sugar, meaning it does not raise blood sugar levels as quickly. Maple syrup contains 24 different antioxidants that can help fight inflammation and chronic disease.
Tahini - also known as sesame seed paste. Sesame seeds are rich in copper and magnesium which are important for producing red and white blood cells, energy and bone health.
Vanilla extract - an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory.