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Cinnamon Apple Granola

Low fat and sugar free, this extra crunchy granola is a great way to get in a serving of complex carbs; sprinkle over low glycemic fruit like berries with yogurt or just eat as a snack, you’ll never, ever, guess this actually good for you.

Ingredients:

8 cups old fashioned oats
1 1/2 cup brown sugar no calorie baking substitute (Ideal brand sweetner or Xyletol – Ralphs sells a ‘no calorie baking sweetner’ in a purple plastic pouch that works AMAZING… make sure to use the brown sugar version)
1/4 cup water
3 single serving tubs of all natural, no sugar added apple sauce
5 tsp very good quality vanilla extract
4 tsp top quality cinnamon… Saigon or Ceylon cinnamon is the best if you can find it (Sprouts, Mothers etc. all carry, its ‘true’ cinnamon, and has a spectacular flavor)
2 tsp ground ginger
2 tsp salt

Method:

Heat oven to 300.

Spray 2 large baking trays with non-stick cooking spray.

Place sugar substitute and water in large bowl. Microwave for approx 3-4 minutes until sugar is dissolved. Let cool slightly and add vanilla extract. Set aside.

In large mixing bowl combine oats, salt, cinnamon, ginger and apple sauce. Mix in slightly cooled sugar mixture… use your clean hands to fold mixture together; mixture will be wet, asyou want a few nice clumps to form when you spread it out to bake.

Spread evenly on two large baking sheets and bake for 90 minutes or until nicely toasted and browned, tossing mixture, and rotating pans in oven once or twice (depending on your oven, it could take up to two hours to fully cook). Cool. Granola will still be somewhat soft until it cools, at which time, it will harden up.

Keept in sealed container, granola stays crispy and good for at least a week.

Variations:

• use a mix of flavorings (3 tsp Vanilla Extract, and 2 tsp Almond Extract) for a more nutty flavor
• add in natural shredded coconut flakes*
• add in a mix of dried fruits and or nuts… slivered almonds, finely diced dried apples or cherries*

* Pending your specific nutritional requirements.