Bourbon Spice Granola

Growing up, the standard breakfast was cereal and milk.  My mom never bought us anything that was neon colored - which I thank her for now - so we usually had the boring cereals like Chex, Cracklin' Oat Bran, and SOMETIMES Frosted Shredded Wheat.

As I grew older, I learned about the empty calories in cereal.  You can eat the bowl of Cheerios, but it's not going to fill you up and give you fuel for your day.

This granola recipe is a variation on Lisa Leake's granola recipe on her blog.  It's a wonderful resource if you're trying to incorporate more whole foods into your life.  You can really add whatever nuts and seeds you want to this mix!  Don't be scared of the calories in the nuts; they are whole foods and filled with good fats.  The usual serving size is anywhere from one-third to a half cup; it will fill you up more than you think!  I'll have this granola with a splash of almond milk and a whole banana for breakfast.  Deelish!

You can get most of these ingredients at Aldi or Trader Joe's.  This keeps the cost down!

Ingredients:
Adapted from 100 Days of Real Food

3 1/2 c. whole oats
1 c. almond slices
1 c. raw cashew pieces (or walnuts)
1 c. unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 c. pepitas (or sunflower seeds)
1/2 c. chia seeds
1 T. cinnamon
2 tsp. ginger
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. sea salt
6 T. coconut oil
1/2 c. pure maple syrup
2-3 T. vanilla-infused bourbon (learn more about infusing your own liquors!)

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 250°. Line a baking tray with parchment paper.

Mix all of the dry ingredients together.

In a microwave-safe container, melt the coconut oil and maple syrup.  Stir this mixture, as well as the bourbon, into the dry ingredients.  Stir well!  It should be a little sticky!

Scrape the granola mixture onto the prepared tray and spread it out evenly and as flat as possible.

Bake the granola for 75 - 90 minutes.  

YOUR HOUSE WILL SMELLING AMAZING.

The granola should come out golden brown and amazing.  Keep it sealed tight in a container for the freshest cereal.  Enjoy this granola and a great way to start next week!

Cheers,
-Aileen