Two in one: Crunchy honey / mango muesli

I’m going to be honest I just love anything that contains oats and not the saw dust type supermarket brands but good high quality whole grain oats that have that distinct oats smell…yum… just yum!
Here’s a really simple recipe for homemade muesli that doesn’t take much effort or time to make but tastes divine and is great for a a quick breakfast with yogurt or milk or as a snack when the 4 o’clock munchies strike at work!
I even throw in a handful of this mix into my protein shake to give it that additional crunch and flavor.

The best part is you can play around with the ingredients and give your own twist to your recipe once you get the basic muesli recipe right, cacao nibs, desiccated coconut I could go on…
This recipe is gluten free, if you want to make it vegan just swap the honey with maple syrup or date syrup.

If you don’t know where to buy rolled wholegrain oats in India just click the link on the ingredient in the recipe.

muesli

8 min prep time 15 min cook time

Ingredients

Group A –Dry Ingredients

  1. 2.5 cups whole grain rolled oats
  2. 1 cup sliced almonds (or use walnut as an alternative or a combination of both, ½ cup each)
  3. ½ cup pumpkin seeds  (or use sunflower seeds, macadamia, pecans)
  4. 1 tbsp flax seeds  
  5. 1 tbsp chia seeds (or use sesame seeds instead)
  6. ½ tsp cinnamon powder (optional)
  7. A pinch of salt

 

Group B –Wet ingredients

  1. 1 tbsp. virgin coconut oil (or ordinary sunflower oil but I like the taste of coconut oil plus the health benefits)
  2. 1-2 tbsp. honey
  3. 1 tbsp. palm sugar/cane sugar
  4. 1 tsp vanilla essence
  5. ½ tbsp. water

 

Other ingredients to be added after roasting

  1. ½ cup raisins (regular golden or black)
  2. ½ cup dried and roughly chopped cranberries (optional)

Method

  1. Mix all the ingredients from group A in a large mixing bowl (dry ingredients)
  2. In another smaller cup or bowl mix group B ingredients (wet ingredients)
  3. Mix the bowl of wet ingredients in to the large bowl of dry ingredients thoroughly until the thick sticky honey sugar mix coats the oats etc.

Handy tip: pour out the coconut oil in a measuring tablespoon first so that the thick viscous honey will easily slide off the oil coated spoon when you use it!

  1. Pre-heat your oven (I use a convection oven) to 160C -a low temperature because you want to lightly roast and not burn the muesli.
  2. Line a baking tray with baking paper and spread a thin layer of the muesli mix onto the tray

(It has to be a thin layer so the mix gets evenly roasted. If your oven is small you will probably need to divide the mix into two or three batches)

  1. Place the tray with raw muesli mix inside the oven for 15 minutes
  2. Please note it is important to keep checking on the mixture in the oven and every five minutes or so to lightly toss the mixture around so that it gets evenly roasted.
  3. The mixture is ready when it turns into a light golden brown color. The muesli will not be crispy or crunchy at this time which is perfectly fine it will crisp up when you leave it out to cool.
  4. When you lay out the muesli to cool you can toss in the raisins and chopped cranberries
  5. Once the muesli completely cools you can store this mix in an airtight container for weeks…if you don’t manage to eat it all up 🙂 

Tweak this recipe slightly to make mango flavored muesli

For the wet ingredients:

  1. Place a saucepan on low to medium heat
  2. To this add the coconut oil, honey and 1 cup pureed mango (Raspuri, Badami, Alphonso, Beganpalli varieties work well), vanilla essence and water. (no palm sugar as the mango is already sweet)
  3. Cool the mango-honey sauce completely before adding to the dry mixture

Proceed as described in the main recipe above

 

 

Almond-cranberry energy bites!

I’m sure you’ve seen aisles full of protein bars and yoga bars and similar “health bars” in supermarkets. Many of these bars are actually filled with extra sugar and fillers (inexpensive and low nutrition ingredients that form large part of the bar). Why buy them when you can make one at home in under 20 minutes!

Once you make your first batch the next time around you can play around with other ingredients like walnuts, peanut butter, dried coconut etc. If you are looking for an extra dose of protein then feel free to replace the cacao powder in this recipe with a scoop of your favorite flavor of protein supplement.

This is a super quick and simple recipe that requires little or no cooking (the roasting bit is optional but gives a nicer flavor) Its my go-to food when:
1. I need a quick energy pick-me-up between classes or meals
2. I’m craving something sweet after a meal
3. I’m on the move and I know its going to be a long gap between meals and I don’t want to starve and then binge

DIY energy barOne caveat though- this is a fairly high calorie food but packed with nutrients so its all good stuff just don’t go overboard 🙂
Some of the benefits of the main ingredients are mentioned below.
Almonds:
Almonds contain lots of healthy fats, fiber, protein, magnesium and vitamin E. The health benefits of almonds include lower blood sugar levels, reduced blood pressure and lower cholesterol levels. They can also reduce hunger and promote weight loss.

Pumpkin seeds:
A 28g (1oz) serving of pumpkin seeds contain 7 grams protein, 13 grams of fat (of which 6g are omega 6’s), magnesium, Vit K, copper, zinc, phosphorus and fiber in significant quantities. Enough said!

Chia seeds:
These little seeds are currently every health freak’s favorite super food and with good reason! Despite their tiny size, chia seeds are among the most nutritious foods on the planet. They are loaded with fiber, protein, Omega-3 fatty acids and various micro-nutrients.

Gluten free Rolled oats:
Oats are technically gluten free however most regular supermarket brands are grown and processed along side wheat and cross contamination is always a possibility and thus are not considered gluten free. Online several brans of certified gluten free oats are available they are whole grain and taste and smell much better than regular oats. My go to brand in India is from Sattvic foods However if you are not gluten sensitive I guess regular oats will also do in the recipe. here are some of the benefits of oats:
Help Lower Cholesterol, Provide Filling Fiber, Help Improve Digestion, Increase Immunity, Have a Low Glycemic Score Compared to Refined Grains,Provide Trace Minerals like Manganese and Phosphorus, Higher Source of Protein Compared to Most Grains.

Dates:
Dates are a good source of various vitamins and minerals. They are a good source of energy, sugar and fiber. Essential minerals such as calcium, iron, phosphorus, sodium, potassium, magnesium and zinc are found in dates. They also contains vitamins such as thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, folate, vitamin A and vitamin K.

Dried Cranberries:
Many of these phytonutrients offer antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-cancer health benefits. Cranberries are a very good source of vitamin C, dietary fiber, and manganese, as well as a good source of vitamin E, vitamin K, copper and pantothenic acid. However the commercial drying process reduces the amount of vitamins compared to fresh cranberries and adds sugar, so in this recipe I have used this ingredient sparingly.

Cacao powder:
Cacao can improve your memory, reduce heart disease, shed fat, boost immunity, and increase energy levels. Raw cacao contains nearly four times the antioxidant content of regular processed dark chocolate, 20 times more than blueberries, and 119 times more than bananas. Again my preferred brand is Sattvic Foods but you can buy your wherever you get it!
Cacao is not to be confused with cocoa powder! Cacao is the purest form of chocolate you can consume, which means it is raw and much less processed than cocoa powder or chocolate bars. Though cocoa may seem inferior to raw cacao, it’s actually very good for you (and less expensive) if you choose a variety without added sugars and milk fats or oils (i.e the unsweetened variety).

 

Source for information on ingredients from:
mercola.com
authoritynutrition.com
dailysuperfoodlove.net
organicfacts,net