Okay, we get it. Now is the time of pumpkin. Since fall rolled around, pumpkin has captured all of our senses and absolutely no one has been allowed to forget that everything must involve pumpkin in some way, shape or form.
It’s been great. It’s been seasonally delicious. We’re certainly enjoying it. But it all gets a bit old, does it not? We’re definitely ready to make the leap to the mother lode of autumnal pumpkin-y sweets — pumpkin pie — but it’s not quite Thanksgiving yet. A deluge of candy binges and turkey comas awaits, but what’s a stomach to do in the meantime?
Well, there’s good news. With this pumpkin spice granola, not only can you envelop yourself and your apartment in the cozy aroma of pumpkin pie without actually laboring to make the real deal, but you can also feel good about your health — so often in direct opposition of autumn fare — in the form of this granola’s comforting crunch.
Granola is oddly therapeutic to make for several reasons; the first is that it’s so incredibly easy, but yields maximum return on investment in terms of health benefits. This recipe packs in the fiber and inflammation-reducing omega-3s of flaxseed, the antioxidants and cholesterol-reducing powers of pecans and oats, the vitamins and minerals of pumpkin seeds, energy-filled raisins and protein-packed quinoa to keep you full — not to mention, it’s sweetened entirely naturally with maple syrup and healthy coconut oil. It all comes together to form a sweet, addictive snack that you can feel good about gobbling, unlike the sugar-laden, store-bought, candy-in-disguise stuff.
Granola is also generally a cinch to make; with confidence in the basic formula, you can throw in just about whatever’s taking up space in your pantry. And then there’s the crazy good aroma that will have you baking up a batch over and over just to keep your apartment in a perpetual state of pumpkin, oat-y aromatic bliss.
We recommend gifting some of this granola to a friend (otherwise you’ll definitely scarf it all down in a couple of days — it’s that good), serving with almond milk and diced apples for a comforting yet energizing morning treat, or munching by the handful warm out of the oven.
Healthy Pumpkin Spice Granola
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
¼ cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed well and patted dry with paper towel
1 ½ cups rolled gluten-free oats
¼ cup ground flaxseed
¼ cup pepitas/pumpkin seeds (or other seed)
¼ cup pecans, chopped
½ cup raisins
¼ cup real maple syrup
¼ cup canned pumpkin purée
1 teaspoon coconut oil (or vegetable oil, like olive)
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (or more to taste)
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
Pinch of salt
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
1. Preheat oven to 325°F.
2. Spread oats and quinoa evenly on a baking pan. Toast in oven for 10 minutes, stirring halfway through. Meanwhile, chop your pecans.
3. In a large bowl, combine toasted oats and quinoa, ground flaxseed, pepitas, pecans and raisins.
4. Reduce oven to 300° F.
5. In a medium bowl, combine maple syrup, pumpkin purée, oil, pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, salt and vanilla.
6. Pour mixture over oats and stir until combined.
7. Spread mixture on baking sheet and bake for an additional 20 minutes, or until golden brown.
8. Enjoy plain, or serve with diced apples and a splash of almond milk for a filling, healthy breakfast or snack.