Chocolate Nutella Granola

Is granola still healthy if you add Nutella and chocolate chips? All the healthy elements are still there so let’s say yes! We love to eat it by the handful, yesterday we had it with vanilla yogurt and berries, and today I added banana and vanilla almond milk and had the most delicious lunch.

Chocolate Nutella Granola

Chocolate Nutella Granola 2

5 cups crispy rice cereal
4 cups rolled oats
1 cup wheat germ
1 cup sliced almonds
1 cup rough chopped pecans
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
2 cups raisins
1 cup coconut
1 cup chopped dates
1 cup dried cranberries
2 Tbl cinnamon
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup Nutella
1 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup pure maple syrup
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla
1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 325°. In large bowl, mix together crispy rice cereal, oats, wheat germ, almonds, pecans, sunflower seeds, raisins, coconut, dates, dried cranberries, and cinnamon. In saucepan, melt butter, Nutella, and brown sugar together. Add maple syrup, salt, and vanilla. Pour over dry ingredients and stir gently until thoroughly combined. Stir in chocolate chips. Spread out evenly on two cookie sheets that have been sprayed with nonstick spray. Bake for 8 minutes, remove and gently stir and spread out again. Bake another 8 minutes, remove, gently stir and spread out again. Bake 8 minutes more. Remove from oven and cool completely. Store in airtight container. Eat as a snack, in a bowl with milk or on top of ice cream, yogurt, you decide.

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Date Chocolate Chip Cake Squares

This is a favorite treat I have been making for years when my husband is eating sugar free. I know, you are probably thinking…sugar free in that house??? Well, my husband has amazing self control and when he decides to eat sugar free, he can do it for years. The only indulgence is Christmas and birthdays. Every once in a while I will make this cake for something a little sweet tasting. The dates, prunes, and raisins make this sweet and moist, try it!

Date Chocolate Chip Cake Squares

1 cup chopped dates
3/4 cup chopped pitted prunes
1/2 cup raisins
1¼ cups water
1/2 cup butter
2 eggs
1½ tsp vanilla
1 cup flour
3/4 cup Equal sweetner
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp cloves
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup chopped walnuts
3/4 cup fruit juice sweetened chocolate chips*

Combine dates, prunes, raisins, and water in medium saucepan; heat to boiling. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, until fruit is tender and water is absorbed, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and add butter, stirring until melted; cool.

Preheat oven to 350°. Mix eggs and vanilla into fruit mixture. Mix in flour, Equal, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and salt. Fold in walnuts and chips. Spread into sprayed 11″x7″ or 9″x9″ baking pan. Bake 25-30 minutes or until pick inserted in center comes out clean.

*I find fruit sweetened chocolate chips in the bulk foods section at my grocery store.

Original recipe from NutraSweet Company, makers of Equal®. I made some changes to the original recipe.

One Year Ago Today: Milk Chocolate Chip Butterfinger Brownies Milk Chocolate Chip Butterfinger Brownies

Two Years Ago Today: Danish Pastry Danish Pastry Slice

If you are interested in Demarle bakeware and kitchen tools please visit mydemarleathome.com/kristenparker or simply click on the Demarle at Home logo below.

Pumpkin Pie Granola

I love granola, when I make it I eat way too much of it.  I guess there are some health benefits in there somewhere.  This recipe is inspired by a picture I saw on Pinterest, thanks to dashingdish.com for a great idea.  This is my version of Pumpkin Pie Granola.

6 cups old fashioned oats
3 cups crispy rice cereal (Rice Krispies)
½ cup chopped dates
¾ cup chopped walnuts
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
½ tsp salt
½ cup butter
1 cup canned pumpkin
1 ¼ cups pure maple syrup
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup vanilla chips
1 cup graham cracker pieces

Preheat oven to 325°.  In large bowl, mix together oats, crispy rice cereal, dates, walnuts, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, and salt.  In microwave safe bowl, warm the butter, pumpkin, maple syrup , and brown sugar until melted together.  Add vanilla.  Pour over dry ingredients and stir gently until thoroughly combined.  Spread out evenly on two Silpat lined sheets or sprayed cookie sheets.  Bake for 30-40 minutes, gently stirring a couple times and spread out again during baking (keeping track of baking time).  Remove and cool completely (granola does set up and stay in clumps as it cools).  Stir in vanilla chips and graham cracker pieces.  Eat as a snack, in a bowl with milk or on top of ice cream, yogurt, you decide.  Store in airtight container.

One Year Ago:  Oreo Truffles 

If you are interested in Demarle bakeware and kitchen tools such as the Silpat & Perforated Baking Sheet please visit mydemarleathome.com/kristenparker or simply click on the Demarle at Home logo below.

Chocolate Chip Coconut Date Nut Bars

These were are hit at our family reunion this week.  A chewy sweet blonde bar, easy to make, bake, and take!

2 cups flour
1½ cups sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 Tbl baking powder
1/2 cup non-fat dry milk
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup butter, melted
2 eggs
1 cup chopped dates
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 cup shredded coconut
1/2-3/4 cup mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350°.  In large bowl, combine flour, sugar, brown sugar, baking powder, dry milk, and salt.  Add butter and eggs, beat with electric mixer on low speed for 30 seconds.  Beat on medium for 2 minutes.  Mix in dates, walnuts, coconut, and chocolate chips.  Spread in sprayed 13″x 9″ baking pan.  Bake 35-45 minutes or until edges are golden brown, and set in center.  Cool completely before cutting.

One Year Ago Today:  Sub Sandwiches on Homemade Bread

If you are interested in Demarle bakeware & kitchen tools please visit mydemarleathome.com/kristenparker or simply click on the Demarle at Home logo below.

 

Dark Chocolate Peanut Granola

At this time each year I make granola, usually in preparation for our family vacation.  This year inspired by a recipe on ohsheglows.com, I am adding dark chocolate, it’s supposed to be good for you, right?  I am willing to believe it.  Here is my version of granola with dark chocolate.

4½ cups old fashioned oats
2½ cups crispy rice cereal (Rice Krispies)
1/2 cup dried cranberries (Craisins)
1/2 cup chopped dates
1 cup honey roasted peanuts
1 cup pure maple syrup
1/2 cup peanut butter
4 Tbl butter
1 tsp pure vanilla
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups dark chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 325°.  In large bowl, mix together oats, crispy rice cereal, craisins, dates, and peanuts.  In microwave safe bowl, warm maple syrup, peanut butter, and butter until melted together.  Add vanilla and salt.  Pour over dry ingredients and stir gently until thoroughly combined.  Stir in dark chocolate chips.  Spread out evenly on two Silpat lined sheets or sprayed cookie sheets.  Bake for 25-30 minutes, gently stirring a couple times and spread out again during baking (keeping track of baking time).  Remove and cool completely (granola does set up and stay in clumps as it cools).  Store in airtight container.  Eat as a snack, in a bowl with milk or on top of ice cream, yogurt, you decide.  We think it’s yummy!

One Year Ago Today:  Chocolate Oat Squares

If you are interested in Demarle bakeware and kitchen tools such as the Silpat & Perforated Baking Sheet please visit mydemarleathome.com/kristenparker or simply click on the Demarle at Home logo below.

Date Nut Snack Bars

A few years ago, we went to Palm Springs, CA for my husband’s work.  Palm Springs is the “Date capital of the world”, I learned to love dates.  Dates stuffed with walnuts, dates covered in coconut, dates covered in chocolate!  They are naturally sweet, fat free, high in potassium, high in fiber, a good source of vitamin A, and contain antioxidants.  So, eat dates!  Maybe all that goodness is negated when you put them in these bars with sugar and mini chocolate chips, oh well.  These bars are a cakey, chewy, good experience.

1/4 cup butter, melted and cooled
1/4 cup sour cream
4 eggs, beaten
2 tsp vanilla
2 cups flour
2 cups sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup chopped dates
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 cup sweetened flaked coconut
3/4 cup mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350°.  In medium bowl, mix melted butter, sour cream, eggs, and vanilla.  In large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, dates, walnuts, coconut, and mini chocolate chips.  Add egg mixture to dry ingredients and stir just until combined (batter will be thick).  Spread in sprayed 15″ x 10″ x 1″ baking pan.  Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden and set.  Cool bars before cutting.

One Year Ago Today:  Chocolate Chocolate Chip Muffins

If you are interested in Demarle bakeware & kitchen tools please visit mydemarleathome.com/kristenparker or simply click on the Demarle at Home logo below.

 

Date Nut Pinwheel Cookies

I love my brother, I would do anything for him.  He recently had surgery and I heard him say something about “those good cookies Aunt Lorraine used to make”.  I went right home and got out Aunt Lorraine’s recipe for Date Nut Pinwheels and made them to take to him.  I remember as a child every time we got together for a big family dinner, sweet Aunt Lorraine would bring these cookies. Good memories.

Date Nut Pinwheel Cookies

Cookie Dough:
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
4 tsp vanilla
3½ cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt

Cream butter and sugars.  Add eggs and vanilla.  Mix in flour, soda, and salt.  Wrap and chill while making filling.

Filling:
1 (8 oz) bag chopped dates
2/3 cup water
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup finely chopped walnuts
1 tsp vanilla

Chop dates very fine or process in food processor.  Stir together dates, water, and sugar in saucepan and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes or until thick.  Remove from heat and add walnuts and vanilla.  Cool.

Take dough from refrigerator, divide into thirds.  Roll one third on floured surface to a 6×12 rectangle.  Gently spread one third of filling evenly over dough.  Roll up, starting at one long side, making a log, wrap in wax paper and put in fridge.  Repeat with other two pieces of dough.  Refrigerate until firm, at least 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 350°.  Slice about 1/4″ slices and put on greased cookie sheet.  Bake 10  minutes or until barely golden brown.

If you are interested in Demarle bakeware and kitchen tools such as the Silpat & Perforated Baking Sheet please visit mydemarleathome.com/kristenparker or simply click on the Demarle at Home logo below.

 

Lemon Date Nut Bread

Looking for ways to use the candied lemon peel in my pantry, plus my love of dates and quick breads…this is what you get!

1 cups chopped dates
1/4 cup chopped candied lemon peel
1 cup boiling water
2 cups flour
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts
1½ tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt

Pour the boiling water over the chopped dates and lemon peel. Let the dates and lemon soak for about 1/2 hour. Preheat oven to 350°. Cream butter, sugar, and vanilla. Combine flour, baking soda, and salt. Add flour mixture to creamed mixture, mix slightly and add date, lemon mixture. Add the nuts. Mix until the dates and nuts are distributed evenly and the dry ingredients are completely moistened. Pour batter into a sprayed loaf pan or three sprayed small loaf pans. Bake for 50-60 minutes (large loaf) 35-40 minutes (small loaves) or until a pick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Homemade Granola

I think it’s fun to combine different elements from different recipes, tweak and fine-tune and come up with something that feels all your own.  It became a tradition at the end of every school year to make homemade granola to take with us on our family vacation.  So, whether we have a vacation planned or not, this time of year I feel the need to make my granola.

5 cups rice krispies
4 cups rolled oats
1 cup wheat germ
1 cup sliced almonds
1 cup rough chopped pecans
2 cups raisins
1 cup coconut
1 cup chopped dates
1 cup craisins
1 cup chopped dried apple
2 Tbl cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup pure maple syrup
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 350°.  In large bowl, mix together rice krispies, oats, wheat germ, almonds, pecans, raisins, coconut, dates, craisins, apple, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  In saucepan, melt butter and brown sugar together.  Add maple syrup, salt, and vanilla.  Pour over dry ingredients and stir gently until thoroughly combined.  Spread out evenly on two cookie sheets that have been sprayed with nonstick spray.  Bake for 8 minutes, remove and gently stir and spread out again.  Bake another 8 minutes, remove, gently stir and spread out again.  Bake 8 minutes more.  Remove and cool completely.  Store in airtight container.  Eat as a snack, in a bowl with milk or on top of ice cream, yogurt, you decide.  We think it’s yummy!

Maple Oatmeal Muffins with Raisins, Dates, and Walnuts

My family likes a portable breakfast.  These muffins are great right out of the oven or later, warmed in the microwave for about 10 to 15 seconds.  It’s a filling muffin that sticks with you and keeps you going.

1½ cups oatmeal
1½ cups white flour
1/2 cup wheat flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup butter, softened
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup chopped dates
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 400°.  In large bowl, stir together oatmeal, white flour, wheat flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.  In another bowl, whip together butter, eggs, maple syrup, and buttermilk.  Add all at once to dry ingredients and mix by hand just until combined.  Fold in raisins, dates, and nuts.  Makes 12 large muffins, fill to top of muffin cup.  Bake for 18-20 minutes.