Almond Granola aka Crack

I am out of my Nature Valley protein bars, so when I woke up yesterday morning I knew I had time to knock out a batch of granola as a pre/post workout snack.  I was going to follow my lemon poppy seed granola recipe, but turns out I was out of poppy seeds, I didn’t have applesauce or agave nectar. 

But the great thing about granola is that you can just throw in whatever you have.  I loved, loved how this one turned out.  It’s sweeter than any other granola I’ve made, but not overly sweet.  And I baked the granola with the craisins and it worked out just fine.  I always hated adding them in after the fact because they never felt incorporated, just kind of loose.

I will say that once I decided to just bake the granola like a sheet, and cool completely, I’ve finally got the granola clusters I was looking for – don’t stir your granola is my motto if you want clusters.  I haven’t figured out the calories for this just yet, but for tracking purposes yesterday, just went with the calories for 1/2 a cup of homemade granola. 

Almond Granola

  • 3 cups oats (I use quick but either is fine)
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup of brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1/2 cup of honey
  • 1/2 cup of unsweetened soy milk
  • 1/2 cup craisins
  • 1/2 cup of sunflower seeds
  • 3/4 cup of whole almonds

Heat oven to 325.  In a bowl, mix all the ingredients together, making sure that all of the oats and stuff are wet – this is a wet granola to start out with – no worries!  Press down on a baking sheet in one layer.  Bake for 30-35 minutes.  The trick is to let the granola cool COMPLETELY before trying to get your clusters.  If you want chewy granola, only let it cool 30 minutes.  I prefer crunchy granola, so after it was almost cool at home, I didn’t think it was cool enough, so I put it in the back seat of my car for the 30 minute ride to work. Open-mouthed smile

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So good.  I ended up having a half a cup on the way to work (see the corner missing!) and it was delicious.

My actual breakfast was delicious too though – I made an egg white/egg beater spinach and cheese omelet – it was so filling!  In a small skillet I put 1 cup of baby spinach.   I let that cook over medium low heat for about 3-4 minutes, just until it started to wilt, then added 1/2 cup egg beaters, 1/2 cup of egg whites and 1/2 an ounce of cheese, put a lid on it and let it cook until almost cooked through.  Then folded it over, added the other 1/2 ounce of cheese and at work I reheated it and added a touch of hot sauce.

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If someone would have told me that I’d eat a spinach omelet 10 years ago I would have thought they were crazy – now I kind of freak out when I run out! Open-mouthed smile

So I talked about going down the slide at the pool in yesterdays post.  The weather was hot, but beautiful!

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I was afraid to take my flip flops off the ground was so hot! (hello mismatched feet!)

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I did my 30 minute swim – the kids were very cooperative of the lap lane which I appreciated.  At the end I just asked a life guard “can adults go down the slide?”  Up to that point I had never seen anyone other than kids go down the slide.

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And . . . I did it!  It was so much fun.  I just laid back and let the water take me to the bottom – I truly did feel like a kid again and think I’ll end every swim with a slide. Open-mouthed smile

When I got back to work I was really hungry.  I ended up making a boboli crust pizza – I was only going to make half of one because half of the crust alone was 190 calories, but I decided I could afford the calories knowing that I was doing an extra hard Insanity last night.

My pizza:  boboli crust, 1/2 cup of my homemade sauce, an ounce of leftover grilled chicken, 1 roasted red pepper chopped, baby spinach and mozzarella cheese – the whole thing comes in at 532 calories.

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Our gas grill sits off of our deck off our living room that gets all the sun around dinner time.  I would have sweated my balls off if I tried to light the grill, so I let my indoor cast iron grill step in.  Simple sirloin steak – I roasted a bunch of red potatoes over the weekend, so sliced them, added a bit of cheese and put them under the broiler in the toaster oven, and for me I diced up a zucchini and sautéed it for a few minutes.

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So last night was not only Max Cardio Conditioning, but also Cardio Abs – 60 minutes in total.  I have to say that while I have to modify 10% of the moves, I was able to kick ass on the other 90% – I just kept telling myself stopping was not an option.  And I like when I am able to continue on and some of the people on the screen have to stop and catch their breath. Open-mouthed smile

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That was my Instagram picture last night (find me!  biz319).  Day 47 is in the books!  I recovered with a grape Gatorade G2 low calorie drink and some farmers market string cheese. Open-mouthed smile

Stats for the Day:

  • 1428 calories, 41 fat, 150 carbs, 10 fiber, 107 protein
  • 42% of calories from carbs, 26% from fat and 32% from protein
  • 30 minute swim at lunch – and a trip down the slide!
  • 60 minute Insanity Max Cardio Conditioning and Cardio Abs

When I got home from work yesterday, Lyle the Squirrel stopped by to say hi!  I knew he was just stopping by to hit me up for some of my fantastic granola.  He was sitting on our table and I just threw the granola on the table and he ran right after it.  He knows a good thing!

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And here are a few more pictures from my Lake vacation in Virginia.  This one was a dragon fly caught in a spiders web by the dock.

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This one a fly was drinking the rain drops off of the flower.

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My brother – I like to call this WARRIOR POSE!

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And the women at the Lake (except my SIL Laura and Rachel who came the next day).  I always like to be front and center – ha! Open-mouthed smile

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And everyone (except my cousins wife Lori, who had already left)!

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Alright, its time to get this show on the road.  Turns out I actually have a day job to get to! Open-mouthed smile  I still have time though to put together Jacky’s Oatmeal Lemon Ricotta pancakes for breakfast.  Although I am subbing in cottage cheese for the ricotta and I am adding blueberries.  Hers look delicious so I have no doubt these will be great!

Make it a great day – and if you have an opportunity to go down a slide – go for it!!

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47 thoughts on “Almond Granola aka Crack

  1. I could never keep granola in the house but yours looks delicious. I love your smile and your family pictures are awesome. You look like a fun group! Lyle is pretty awesome too. 🙂

    • I agree Caron, it is hard to portion control, but when I call it a pre/post workout snack, I am not tempted to eat it other than at those times. 😀

      We still think our dog Ed is reincarnated in Lyle – he showed up right after we put our dog down!

  2. Wow I can’t believe you are on day 47! Kicking ass and taking names, that’s what I say! Woop!!!! I’m hoping to get out in the sun after work today if its not too fiery hot out….one of the local aquatic centers is about 3 blocks away, so I really have no excuse! That omlette looks awesome. yum yum! I love that you did the slide! Isn’t great to act like a kid sometimes? Keeps the spirit young! Have a great day biz and keep on slidin!

  3. You have less than 2 weeks left to finish Insanity!!! You are going to crush the nest Fit Test!!
    And so cool that you did the slide – maybe the lifeguard will video it for you next time and we can all watch the joy!!

  4. Love that you went down the slide!

  5. I’m so glad you went down the slide- just awesome!!! The granola looks totally delicious. I have plans to make more granola this weekend. Mmm mini pizza- what a perfect lunch. I can’t believe Lyle is still around. What a funny little guy. Happy Thursday

  6. I’m glad you had fun in Virginia…We Virginians do promise our guests a great time! I love that you went down the slide….love feeling like a kid again!

  7. Way to take the plunge on the slide!!

  8. That crack looks good! And it sounds like I currently have all of the ingredients to make it. (except for soy milk – i’ll just use almond.)

  9. Wait. You have balls? That explains *so* much Biz ::giggle:: [You wrote that sentence JUST for me, didn’t you? hee]

    And going down the slide – Most Awesomest Thing EVER!

    You rock! Now pass me that spinach cheese omelet with a side a granola, would ya? Girl’s hungry.

    XO JG

  10. That granola looks delicious! I love that you put the pan in the car to let it cool longer 😀 Also, I just followed you on instagram!

  11. Jenn@Cooking Aweigh the LBs

    I’m so happy you went down the slide! Go you!!!

  12. You faced your fear of sliding down the slide…..good for you!!! I am liking your spinach cheese omelet. When I finish here, going to go make one 🙂 Steak dinner and pizza look good too!! Looking for meals that are cool to make in the hot weather…used the Foreman grill for burgers, must try a steak sometime. Have a great day and keep cool!!!

  13. Weighting For 50

    YAY for day 47!! You are insanely FIERCE!!! I didn’t realize Lyle had a white stomach. Aww. LOVE the vacation shots too!!! Have a wonderful Thursday Vat!

  14. Yayyy! I was hoping you’d go down that slide. 🙂 Good job on 47 days of Insanity!

  15. Yay for you for going down the slide. You are inspiring me to swim – I need some lessons. I just may do it! Great – now I want pizza! (That’s something my husband and I always say whenever we see a pizza or hear the word….my brain is very suggestible for pizza)Anyway, have you shared your ‘homemade pizza sauce’ with us? I didn’t see it on the list – i”ve tried a few different recipes and am always up for a new one 🙂

  16. I am stoked you went down the slide, that is awesome 🙂 I always have to chuckle a little in the summer when the east coast gets their few days of really hot weather and everyone is complaining. Come to AZ for a week in June or July!

    Great job on keeping up the insanity, you are kicking butt.

  17. Oh granola is one of those things I can’t have around either. Very, very addictive that homemade stuff! 🙂 Awe…I’m loving the heat wave!!

  18. YAY! You went down the slide. I would totally finish each swim with a quick ride; what fun! B got within 6 inches of the diving board this morning; baby steps!

    • So close! Erin, I thought of your son today because they had a line of kids waiting to go off the diving board – one kid was a bit reluctant, but the kids behind him were cheering him on, he finally did it and he had the hugest smile on his face when he popped out of the water!

  19. Biz, you are my hero. I love, love, love that you went down the slide. How freaking fun! The granola looks so good, I should make some for my hubby. He doesn’t like craisins though, so I would need to leave those out. Your family looks so happy.

  20. I love homemade granola but it can be tough to stay with a small portion! It amazes me how much cooking you do each day – even lunch at your work place. Do you ever get tired of cooking? I ask because although I love to cook I do have phases where I just don’t want to cook and can’t think of anything new to make. 🙂

  21. I am so glad you went down the slide. We all need those kid moments more often to keep the rush going. You look so happy, Biz.

  22. Almond Granola is my FAVE!! I’ve just been buying “Bare Naked” vanilla almond granola. And I’ve never attempted to make the crunchy stuff before, so I’ll definitely be trying your recipe. Thanks for posting it! And feelin’ like a kid again on the slide – that’s what I’m talkin’ about – YES!!! So, did the life guard look at you funny when you asked? Or was he/she all cool about it? Maybe you’ll start a new trend!

  23. Reading about you going down the slide brought back childhood memories. I began to think that I need to get to the pool again, because the more active we can be and the more free that we feel in our activities, the more joy we experience in our lives. You are doing such good things for yourself and your family! BTW, your granola looks yummy, as does all of your food.

    • Even though I am not the best swimmer, it is a lot of fun – just to be outside away from my desk every day is such a great break! Happy Friday!

  24. I’m sure Tyler and Becky enjoyed your crack granola and I am SO glad you went down that slide, so fun!

    • Thanks Courtney! I’ve got blueberry lemon struessel muffins in the oven right now – we are finally celebrating Tyler and another attorneys birthdays today!

  25. findingradiance

    Yay for the slide – you should start and end each swim with the slide 😀

  26. I’m so proud of you for going down that slide!

    I can’t believe I eat spinach either. We go through the gigantic Costco bag in a week sometimes. If it shows signs of getting soggy I freeze it for smoothies. I put spinach in everything!

    I have said it before but I cannot keep crackola in my house. I just have no self-control around it.

    Those are such nice family photos . Looks like such a fun trip. I wish my family did more things together even if only once or twice a year.

  27. Made the Almond Granola – it is most excellent. Even the picky eater loves it – WHAT?!??! Thanks so much for posting the recipe!

  28. […] wanted to get rid of the taste like ass granola so I didn’t have to see it again.  I have a new batch in the oven right now, so fingers crossed that one turns out.  No more fruit purees in […]

  29. […] made another batch of crack granola, if for no other reason than to redeem myself from my last batch.  This one turned out […]

  30. […] – off to make Hannah some crack granola, make some salsa and fry up some more […]

  31. […] so far.  I liked the granola as a topping, but it’s not the kind of snacking granola like my crack granola.  But I do like how low in sugar this batch was.  I had two scrambled eggs on the side […]

  32. […] It has banana and peanut butter in it – how bad could that be?!  I used the base of my Almond Granola Crack recipe and added some more good […]

  33. […] thing was, I didn’t have all the normal ingredients on hand to make my crack granola.   So I kind of kept throwing things together and this is what I came up […]

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