Ever since I developed this granola recipe, I have been experimenting with it. I love the robust flavor of all-natural roasted peanut butter--the real kind of peanut butter, not the synthetic, hydrogenated peanut butter America wants you to eat. I'm so biased, I know. A good quality nut butter should only contain one ingredient, nuts. Why should a peanut butter ingredient label list five ingredients? Does the name of the product, "peanut butter", inform you of this? If processed peanut butter manufacturers were honest to their clientele, I am sure their sales would be reduced. The same principle goes for a lot of other food products. You have to be your own advocate. It's cheaper for a company to manufacture a product that is full of low-quality fluff and more expensive for a company to manufacture a product chock full of high-quality real ingredients. Buying real food does not necessarily mean buying 100% organic. It just means being informed and educated about what you purchase. How can you do this? Educate yourself about ingredients, look for sales, only buy what is in season, buy in bulk, and most of all, read food labels.
Back to my granola recipe! So what did I actually change about my previous granola recipe? I used a mixture of mashed banana, agave nectar, and peanut butter in place of the 1/2 cup liquid sweetener. To compensate for the additional wet ingredients, I upped the oats by 1/2 cup. I also added in 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg. I am very satisfied with the end product. Enjoy!
PEANUT BUTTER-BANANA GRANOLA (VEGAN)
-3 cups oats
-1/3 cup sunflower seeds
-1/3 cup ground flax seed
-1/3 cup wheat germ
-2 teaspoons cinnamon
-1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
-1 small banana, mashed
-1/4 cup agave nectar
-1/4 cup all-natural roasted peanut butter, unsalted (I used Trader Joe's ©)
Preheat oven to 300F or preheat broiler to low.
Mix oats, flax, wheat germ, sunflower seeds, cinnamon, and nutmeg together on a large metal baking sheet. In a small bowl, combine the agave nectar, mashed banana, and peanut butter. Drizzle the banana mixture over the granola, and mix well to coat. Place granola in preheated oven and bake. Be sure to stir the granola every five minutes or so to prevent burning. Your granola is ready when it is lightly browned and crispy. Remove from oven, and cool to room temperature.
Store in a Ziploc bag or an airtight container.