School is back in session this week and I’ve got our morning meals ready to go with a new yummy homemade granola! Love having something quick and easy to serve the kiddos in the morning that will fuel their growing bodies and expanding minds. Cereal used to be my go-to but I have a love/hate relationship with cereal as a mom. I love that it provides a quick, objection-less meal for kids in the morning but I don’t love the sugar content and nutritionally low quality of the ingredients that you find in your typical cereal. Despite its limiting qualities, I do have to say that I really LOVE cereal. I’m an honest recovering cereal addict. I could eat a bowl (or two) for three meals a day, every day and be sooo happy! I just LOVE the stuff!! This is where knowledge gets in the way, but knowing what I do about nutrition and what growing young bodies need, I had to cut off our family’s relationship with packaged cereal for breakfast.
For years cereal was not only a meal, but also a comfort food. I would mindlessly eat cereal when I wanted to put off something that needed to be done or have a conversation that needed to be had. As a grown up I stopped buying cereal for this reason but once I had kids I started buying simple cereals like Cheerios (or Trader Joe’s version) because that’s what kids eat. This cereal became a staple in our house as a breakfast or a snack. It was convenient and easy, which for busy working parents is golden but I was struck by how often the girls would finish a bowl and still need something else because they were never satisfied. A gentle reminder to me!
Now there is something soothing and satisfying for me to have a bowl of something in the mornings. My bowl typically contains a green smoothie which the girls were not down with and after a few weeks of oatmeal they need something different. Enter the Granola train! I love making homemade granola because you can make so many varieties of granola using different grains, nuts or seeds and superfoods. Homemade granola is also great because you can control the added sugar and use lower glycemic options like coconut nectar or less processed sweeteners like honey or maple syrup. What I love about this granola is that the kids love it and only need a relatively smaller bowl to feel full. Granola is satisfying, nutritious and the perfect fuel to start your day. Having a good granola on hand is also key not just for the morning rush but to throw on snacks or desserts like coconut yogurt parfaits, “nice” cream, fruit crumbles or Mama’s green smoothies.
The granola recipe below is fun because I mix in a few different types of gluten-free grains, it’s low in sugar, high in fiber and protein. If you prefer a grain-free option, check out my Nuts About You Granola post. Turn on your oven and get out your gluten-free grains to make this delicious crunchy Millet Granola Crunch.