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Easy Skillet Granola | alidaskitchen.com

Easy Skillet Granola

This recipe for Easy Skillet Granola is a delicious way to start the day…and takes minutes to make!  It is also vegan and can be nut free and gluten free.

Easy Skillet Granola | alidaskitchen.com

As much as we love granola, it is not something that we buy very often.  It is challenging to find granola made without nuts, and with nut allergies at home…well it just makes sense to find something else.  I actually never realized how easy it is to make granola at home until making this Easy Skillet Granola recipe!…

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peanut butter pumpkin spice granola bars

Peanut Butter Pumpkin Spice Granola Bars

In the spirit of the Peanut Butter for Breakfast campaign, I thought it would be fun to share some breakfast recipes using peanut butter.  What better place to find inspiration than the National Peanut Board’s website.  I found so many delicious ideas, including these super healthy granola bars.  It is amazing how easy and inexpensive it is to make granola bars right at home.  And they’re good too!

These granola bars have a perfect balance of flavors and a nice texture that is not too chewy, not too crispy.  They are naturally sweetened with dried fruit and a touch of molasses.  The peanut butter is present, but subtle, and acts as a binder with the egg whites.  Add a little spice, some oats and seeds, and you have a healthy, high-protein, high-fiber granola bar that is perfect for an on-the-go breakfast, a mid-morning pick me up, or any time the mood strikes.

Peanut Butter Pumpkin Spice Granola Bars
 
Yields: 8 bars
Ingredients
  • Cooking spray
  • 2 tablespoons natural peanut butter (chunky or creamy)
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1 tablespoon molasses
  • 1½ cup rolled oats
  • ¼ cup dried fruit, such as dates, raisins, prunes, chopped (I used dates)
  • 2 tablespoon flaxseed meal
  • 2 tablespoons pepitas (green pumpkin seeds) or sunflower seeds
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 8-inch square baking pan with foil and spray foil with cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the peanut butter, egg whites and molasses until combined.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix together the oats, dried fruit, flaxseed, pepitas, sesame seeds and pumpkin pie spice.
  4. Add the oat mixture to the peanut butter mixture, and stir until combined.
  5. Pour into prepared baking dish and use a silicone spatula (or the back of a spoon sprayed with cooking spray) to spread the mixture into the pan and bake for 40 to 45 minutes. Let cool completely in the pan. Remove from pan by lifting out the foil and then cut into 8 bars.

Adapted from the National Peanut Board

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Layered Pumpkin Loaf

Layered Pumpkin Loaf is a delicious and easy recipe for pumpkin bread with a cream cheese swirl in the middle.

For the longest time, Mike and I would get ‘Pumpkin Loaf’ from everybody’s favorite coffee shop (you know, the one with the green logo).  While that bread is good, I dare say that I prefer this Layered Pumpkin Loaf.  Perhaps it’s the moist and flavorful bread, or perhaps it’s the cream cheese layer resting in the middle.  Regardless of the reason, this is just plain good.

I substituted buttermilk for the skim milk in the original recipe, and I added extra cinnamon in addition to the pumpkin pie spice.  I also added the chopped pepitas on top.  Pepitas are tasty, add some crunch, look pretty, and go perfectly with this bread.

If you will be hosting out of town guests over the holidays, or simply hosting a breakfast/brunch, Layered Pumpkin Loaf would make a lovely addition to your table.

Not sure if you noticed, but I like pumpkin just a little bit. 🙂 This bread is certainly no exception.

Layered Pumpkin Loaf
 
Yields: 9x5 loaf, approximately 16 servings
Ingredients
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
  • ½ cup packed brown sugar
  • 4 egg whites, divided
  • ½ cup low fat buttermilk
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon salt (optional)
  • 1 package (8 ounces) Neufchatel cream cheese (1/3 reduced fat), softened
  • ¼ cup pepitas, chopped (optional)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, stir pumpkin, 1 cup granulated sugar, brown sugar, 3 egg whites, buttermilk and oil, until combined.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices and salt. Add to pumpkin mixture and fold gently just until moistened.
  4. In a small bowl, beat cream cheese, remaining granulated sugar and remaining egg white until well blended.
  5. Spoon half the pumpkin batter into a 9x5-inch loaf pan sprayed with cooking spray. Spread the cream cheese mixture in a layer over that batter. Top cream cheese layer with remaining pumpkin batter (You will want to spread the top pumpkin layer a little bit with a silicone spatula, but it is ok if a little cream cheese is still visible).
  6. Sprinkle the top layer with chopped pepitas, if desired. It helps to gently pat the pepitas into the batter
  7. Bake for 1 hour to 1 hour 5 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Loosen bread from sides of pan; cool in pan for 10 minutes. Remove from pan to wire rack; cool completely.

Adapted from Kraft

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Spiced Pumpkin Molasses Muffins

I am always looking for new and different recipes for muffins.  They are an easy make ahead breakfast that Mike can take on the go, on his way to work or while traveling.  They are also easy for me to grab while I’m chasing after Adam, who then insists (very persistently) that I share with him.  Pumpkin season seems to be very popular with everybody these days, and our family is no exception.  For this muffin, I was looking for something pumpkin, healthy and with a little pizazz.  Enter Spiced Pumpkin Molasses Muffins.

These muffins fulfill all of the above requirements and then some.  The pumpkin and molasses flavors are nicely balanced, with neither one outshining the other.  I topped the muffins with a mix of chopped pepitas, oats and brown sugar, which added some nice texture and visual appeal.  The muffins would be delicious without this optional topping, but I highly recommend it.  I also highly recommend making these muffins!

Spiced Pumpkin Molasses Muffins
 
Yields: 12 muffins
Ingredients
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup white whole wheat flour
  • ¼ cup flaxseed meal
  • ¼ cup rolled oats
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1½ teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • ½ cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • ½ cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 tablespoons molasses
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ pepitas, chopped (optional for garnish)
  • 2 tablespoons rolled oats (optional for garnish)
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar (optional for garnish)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line muffin cups with liners (or sprady with cooking spray). In a small bowl, mix together chopped pepitas, oats and sugar for garnish, if using. Set aside.
  2. In a bowl, mix together the flours, flax seed meal, oats, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and pumpkin pie spice until the ingredients are thoroughly combined.
  3. In another large bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, pumpkin puree, yogurt , eggs, molasses, oil, and vanilla until well-blended.
  4. Add the pumpkin mixture to the flour mixture, folding until just combined (do not over mix).
  5. Divide the mixture into the prepared muffin tins, and sprinkle each muffin with the pepitas-oats mixture.
  6. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 15 to 20 minutes.

Adapted from All Recipes

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Mixed Green Salad with Dried Cherries

I love this salad!  It’s simple.  It’s elegant.  It’s delicious.

What’s not to love really.  Mixed greens.  Mustard and red wine vinaigrette.  Sliced red onion.  Sweet dried cherries.  Toasted pepitas.

The tangy vinaigrette is the perfect complement to the sweetness of the cherries and red onion.  And the roasted pepitas add a complexity that tops off the salad perfectly.
Mixed Green Salad with Dried Cherries
 
Ingredients
  • 3 teaspoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • Fresh ground pepper
  • 8 oz mixed greens
  • ½ cup sliced red onion
  • ½ cup dried sweet cherries
  • ¼ cup pepitas
Instructions
  1. In a 350 degree oven, toast pepitas on a pie plate for 10 minutes.
  2. In a large bowl whisk together vinegar, mustard, olive oil and ground pepper.
  3. Add mixed greens, onion, cherries and pepitas to bowl and toss to combine.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 4 servings

Adapted from Martha Stewart

Thank you for visiting Alida’s Kitchen!  Have a great weekend!