Whenever I tell people I do not drink milk I always get the same question: “But what do you eat your cereal with?” When I then continue on to say I do not eat cereal I get looked at as if I were an alien from outer space dressed up in a leprechaun outfit wearing a purple wig. I know, but cereal is so delicious and is obviously the only breakfast option right….wrong.
I did not always not eat cereal. I grew up on cereal. I had two bowls every day, every morning as a child. Sometimes I would even have another bowl later on in the day as a snack. I’m not even joking. I remember sitting at the table with my brother as we chowed down on our ever so not nutritious breakfasts. We would each have our choice of cereal and we would sit there reading the fun facts or doing the mazes on the back of the Kellogg’s boxes. My favourites were Golden Grahams, Captain Crunch, Cinnamon Toast Crunch, and Sugar Crisp. The sad fact is, even the “healthier” cereal options are truly not much better than my old favs. Take Kashi Go Lean cereals for example. There is nothing lean about them. It has 9g of sugar per cup. Not to mention the 2nd, 3rd, AND 4th ingredients listed are all forms of sugar or contain it and there a couple more added sugars further down that ingredient list. This is a concern since ingredients are always listed in descending order of predominance so the first few ingredients labeled are the ones that are making up most of what you are eating. I won’t even get into all the other not so health promoting ingredients like canola oils, soy grits, and other additives. A great rule of thumb to follow is to try and stick to ingredient labels that have 10 or less ingredients that are all real food ingredients. Labels listing 30+ ingredients (where half of them are fancy words for sugar) are not ideal. But you can’t live without cereals? You can and here’s how. Try cutting down on your favourites. Instead of having a bowl every day, have one every second day and slowly cut down until you reach a fun weekly indulgence. Or have half the amount you normally would and add fresh fruit and unsweetened coconut with some hemp hearts. Better yet, try this yummy Honey Glazed Granola recipe! You know and can control exactly what goes into it and it works wonderfully in place of cereals.
Enjoy this recipe with your choice of milk or milk alternative. Perhaps add some fresh fruit or mix it with a plain greek yogurt or any dairy free yogurts. It is even fabulous on its own as a crunchy snack. The flavours can easily be altered by switching up the varieties of nuts and seeds you use as well as the natural sweetener and spices. I made a wonderful seasonal Pumpkin Spice Granola that is in my second Clean Eats eBook. The possibilities are endless.
Honey Glazed Granola
*Makes 4 cups
- 1 and 1/2 cups of nuts and seeds of your choice (I used almonds, walnuts, pecans, pumpkin and sunflower seeds).
- 1/2 cup rolled oats (make they are certified gluten free if you need gluten free).
- 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
- 1/4 cup organic honey (try maple syrup or coconut nectar for a vegan recipe)
- 1 and 1/2 tbsp. melted coconut oil
- 1 tbsp. cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp. sea salt
- 1 tbsp. hemp hearts (optional)
- 1/4 cup dried fruit (I used cranberries)
- Pulse larger nuts in a food processor just to break them up a little bit.
- Place in a bowl and mix with all other ingredients except your hemp hearts and dried fruit.
- Place in parchment paper and bake at 325•F for 12-15 minutes.
- Once your mixture is cool, break apart to make it nice and loose and add your hemp and dried fruit.
What is your favorite breakfast go-to that is an outside of the cereal box option? For the parents out there, what do you prepare for your kids in the mornings to keep them nourished and satisfied?