When I'm traveling, I'm all about nutritious, protein-rich snacks to keep my tummy full. For my most recent trip, I whipped up a batch of granola for quick munching. Since I knew I’d mostly be eating this by the handful (not in soy yogurt or with plant milk), I needed to make sure this granola had lots and lots of big ole’ clumps. I’ve seen oil-free granola recipes that use applesauce for moisture and they usually have nice clumps, so I decided to try something similar. But I wanted to experiment with a different, bolder puréed fruit, one that would add flavor as well as moisture. Strawberries seemed like the perfect choice, and they worked wonderfully, especially when paired with coconut. Mmm.

Strawberry Coconut Granola [Vegan, Gluten-Free]

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup fresh or frozen strawberries
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup ground flax seed
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup mix-ins of choice (I used chopped almonds and chocolate chips.)
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Preparation

  1. Preheat oven to 350˚ F, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or spread liberally with coconut oil.
  2. In a food processor, blend the strawberries until they’re nearly puréed . (If you’re using frozen strawberries, they should be the texture of a slushie.) Set aside.
  3. In a small saucepan, add the coconut oil, maple syrup, and vanilla extract. Stir to combine, heating over low so that the oil melts. Once all three ingredients are well mixed, stir in the dried coconut. Let sit for a minute, then turn off the heat. Add the puréed strawberries and stir to combine, then set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, mix the oats, ground flax, and salt together, then pour in the wet ingredients. Stir to combine, then fold in any mix-ins you’re using.
  5. Pour the granola onto the prepared baking sheet and spread into a very thin layer. Bake for 35-40 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes or so, then remove from oven and let cool completely before eating.

Notes

To ensure that this recipe is gluten-free, be sure to use certified gluten-free oats.

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