Yum!  Granola.  It even sounds good.  To the left you'll find a perfectly, non- professional photo of granola taken by yours truly, but please don't judge!  The contents inside are incredible compared to the picture itself.  
    Granola is an easy, delicious and nutritious option for breakfast, snack, or even as a topping to the beloved peach and blueberry crumble.  Granola has an abundance of both soluble and insoluble fiber thanks to the oats.  This fiber is responsible for keeping you full, maintaining heart health, stabilizing blood sugar, and contributing to a healthy colon.  
    Granola is simple to make on your own at home.  Aside from getting your creative juices flowing with the concocting of this beneficial creation, you are able to control the sugar content.  Store bought granolas tend to be chock full of sugars.  So remember, you are sweet enough!  Do your body a favor by choosing natural sweeteners such as honey, maple syrup, stevia, or, better yet, pass on all of the above mentioned ingredients and satisfy your sweet tooth by adding some dried fruit to the mix.  Regardless, enjoy!  I have posted a recipe (see below), but please cater to YOU and put your own spin on things.  Keep calm and granola on! 
                                                                                                                                         Wishing you lots of health & happiness,
                                                                                                                                                                                       Stacy xoxo 

Maple Pecan Granola
by Matthew Kadey, MSc, RD
  Mixed with yogurt and berries, this homemade, maple-infused granola makes
  for a knockout breakfast.

2 cups (500 mL) old-fashioned rolled oats
1/2 cup (125 mL) pecans, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup (125 mL) dried cranberries
1/2 cup (125 mL) raisins
1/3 cup (80 mL) sunflower seeds
1/4 cup (60 mL) cocoa nibs 
1 tsp (5 mL) cinnamon
1/2 tsp (2 mL) nutmeg
1/4 tsp (1 mL) salt
1/2 cup (125 mL) maple syrup
1 tsp (5 mL) fresh ginger, grated
1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 275 F (135 C).
   In large bowl, combine oats, pecans, cranberries, raisins, sunflower seeds, cocoa nibs, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt.         
In separate small bowl, combine maple syrup, ginger, and vanilla.
Add maple syrup mixture to oat mixture and mix until everything is moist.
Spread out on baking sheet and cook for 1 hour, stirring every 20 minutes to prevent burning. Cool completely and store for up to a week in an airtight container.
Serves 6.

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