Banana Butternut Granola Chomp

IMG_4135Chomp Chomp Chomp… The sound I make as I eat this freaking fantastic crunchy granola. You know it's good when the person sitting next to you is annoyed by the sound of you face while eating.  I eat a lot of crunchy stuff. And I am pretty sure I annoy the mister a lot. 

Oh well, he will live, and he eats his fair share of annoying stuff too so we can just call it even.

So granola. I love it. I make a batch every few weeks or so, and I usually make it just for me. (I almost never make things just for me) I like to keep it simple but flavorful. A tad sweet, but not really, and crunchy, without the oily fried taste. I also like a variety of sizes, some big clusters and some small pieces. 

This granola fits the bill perfectly. Made with 5 ingredients, no oil, and the perfect sweetness level.  It's one of my favorite flavors yet. And I know I said I made it just for me, but the mister really liked it too. (I can't help sharing)

IMG_4065The simplest of stuff. 1 smashed banana, a cup of pureed butternut squash, Vietnamese cinnamon*, honey, and old fashion oats. (and a dash of salt, not shown)

*Note. I only ever use Vietnamese cinnamon because once I start using it, regular old cinnamon just won't  cut it anymore. It is a bit sweeter and a lot more spicy. If you don't have it or don't want to use it, use regular cinnamon and add in 1/2 a teaspoon of all spice.IMG_4081Toss the cinnamon and salt with the oats. Mix together the banana, squash and the sweetener and combine with the oats until full incorporated. 

Another note. Because I made this granola for me and no body else, I actually omitted the honey (I think that banana abs squash make it sweet enough) But if I was making this for lets say, the mister, or a friend, I would use add a bit. The sweetness level and sweetener of choice is up to you, but 2-3 teaspoons of honey or maple syrup is usually sweet enough for  people.

IMG_4104Dump the mixture on a parchment lined baking sheet and give it a little pat, you know, to settle all the bit and pieces together, all cozy and evenly spread out. Now stick into a preheated oven and after about 20 minutes, take out of oven and give the granola a toss, breaking apart any super big chunks or overly wet pieces. Put back into oven for another 20 minutes. (I like my granola super crispy crunchy so I cook it a little longer, like 30 more minutes)IMG_4128And when you are happy with the crunchiness of you granola, remove from oven and let cool, trying not to eat all of it while it sit's on the counter looking all pretty and smelling like happiness. 

Grab a bowl, stick the rest into a jar with a lid, hide it from others, and chomp chomp chomp away!


Banana Butternut Granola

  • 3 cups old fashion oats (use gluten free oats if needed)
  • 1 ripe banana, mashed 
  • 1 cup butternut squash puree (can use canned)
  • 2 tablespoons Vietnamese cinnamon (or 2 tablespoons regular cinnamon and 1/2 teaspoon of allspice)
  • 1-3 tablespoon honey or sweetener of choice (use greater amount for sweeter)
  • dash of salt

Preheat oven to 375

In a large bowl, mix together oats, cinnamon and salt. Mix the mashed banana, squash, and sweetener of choice together and combine with the oats. If the mixture seems really dry, add in a very small splash of water to loosen just enough to mix.

Dump mixture onto a parchment lined baking sheet and evenly disperse the mixture. Give it a kind of smoosh to compact the oats and to make sure all its all the same thickness on the pan.

Stick into oven for 20 minutes. Remove and give granola a little toss, maybe breaking apart any really big chunks (unless you like really big chunks) and put back into oven for another 20 minutes. (30 for a crunchier granola) Remove from oven and let cool on  baking sheet before storing in an air tight container. If you find that it is not as crunchy as you would like or is a few days old and lost some of its crunchiness, just stick it back into the oven for a few minutes to re crunch.

Eat as is, as a cold cereal,  dip in peanut butter, add to popcorn or whatever way you want to eat it. No utensil required.

Oatmeal Fresh Cranberry Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies


It hasn't stopped snowing, the temperature is dropping fast (it's getting to the point the dog doesn't even want to be outside) and the mister is busy hand shoveling three long driveways. So I figured that in between all the laundry folding, plant watering , and all around sitting on my butt  that I am doing  INSIDE, that  I would be so super nice and crank the stove up and make my love some cookies.I love making cookies, especially when I have chores to do. I think part of it is that cookies are baked in batches which breaks up the chores and gives a sort of rhythm to things. Plus everything is nice when the house smells like cookies.  I was going to make chocolate chocolate chocolate cookies, but realized that I didn't have cocoa powder, so I went with fresh cranberries (I just scored a pound of organic cranberries for 89 cents!) coconut flakes and chocolate chips. Plus I wanted to make them oatmeal because the mister likes oatmeal and oatmeal makes the cookies a little more hardy. (We need hardy when the temperature dips below zero)The verdict….. chewy, soft, slightly sweet oatmeal, bittersweet chocolate, nutty floral coconut, and the zing and pop of the fresh cranberries. He told me to hide them… hide so he will stop eating them….. because they be amazing!


The base of this cookie….We are using regular old fashion oats and flour.  Salt, baking soda and baking powder.  Vanilla, chia seeds in hot water, coconut oil  white and brown sugar…. You know, all the cookie stuff.  Then all the goodness.. Chocolate chips, coconut flakes, and fresh cranberries. Goodness.Oh yeah, and they are vegan…if that matters to you.Warm the coconut oil and mix with the white and brown sugars. Then add the chia seeds soaked in hot water.  Stir until nice and silky smooth.In goes some more stuff.  I just dumped all the dry right on in that bowl and mixed it up nice and nice.Chopped the fresh cranberries into chunks… One at a time……Just kidding, I actually laid a cutting board on top of the cranberries, applied a little pressure and sliced through the cranberries.. Does that make sense? I hope so, because its is much easier and faster and the cranberries don't all roll away.The chopped cranberries, coconut flakes and the chocolate chips go in to be mix all up. I used my hands to form the balls and gave each mound a little smoosh, but not completely flat.  Then into a preheated 375 degree oven for about 13-15 minutes or until a nice golden brown.A cup of hot coffee and a plate of warm cookies… I am the nicest, right! (After his nice cookie rest I proceeded  to do a little nagging, so the day evened out)So today is probably a great day for everyone to make cookies. It's freezing out,  its saturday and well, just cause. You might even be looking for a great recipe to make for that big party your going to.You should make these cookies. Have a Fantastic Weekend!!!-C

Oatmeal Fresh Cranberry Coconut Chocolate Chip Coookies


  • 1 cup old fashion oats
  • 1 1/4cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon chia
  •  4-6 tablespoons hot water
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup fresh chopped cranberries
  • 1/2 cup coconut flakes

Preheat oven to 375To start, take the chia seed and soak them in the 4 tablespoon hot water for a few minutes. Then in a large bowl, mix together the white and brown sugar with warmed coconut oil. Add in the gelled chia seeds and vanilla and stir until silky and combined. (the warm chia seeds will help everything mix together nicely) Now mix in all the dry. I start with the oats, dump on flour, toss in the baking powder and soda and salt. Mix until fully combines. If the dough seems to dry, add in another tablespoon or two of hot water. Chop the fresh cranberries into halves or smaller and dump them, the coconut and chocolate chips into the bowl of dough and mix.Using a scoop, spoons, or your hands, make little balls and place on a cookie sheet, giving each ball a little smoosh. Into the oven for 13-15 minutes or until golden brown.Remove and cool on rack.Eat a few and hide the rest for later.