A few years ago, a family friend gave me a cute little cookbook called Salty Sweets at our engagement party. While the pages are filled with beautiful delectable desserts and tempting treats, they are also packed with sugar, butter, heavy cream and syrups. While many of us are gorging on all of the above this time of year, I decided to flip one of these sweet and salty recipes into something healthy and guilt-free!
This chocolate cherry granola will jazz up any holiday breakfast and your guests will thank you when they’re looking for a healthier option in the morning to fight their food hangover from the night before. By swapping out the refined sugar with natural sweeteners and replacing the butter with applesauce, eating chocolate for breakfast never felt so good!
Chocolate Cherry Granola
vegetarian, gluten-free, soy-free, dairy-free, peanut-free, seed-free, shellfish-oil, fish-free, nightshade-free, bean & legume-free
Makes 7 cups
Adapted from Salty Sweets
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 1/4 cup applesauce
- 1 Tbsp honey
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 4 cups rolled oats
- 2 Tbsp + 1 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup pecans, chopped
- 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut (divided)
- 1 cup dried cherries, chopped
- 1/4 cup cacao nibs
- Preheat oven to 300*F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a small saucepan, combine maple syrup, coconut oil, molasses, applesauce, honey and vanilla. Heat on low until melted and combined.
- In a large bowl, combine oats, cocoa powder, salt, pecans and 1/2 cup coconut flakes.
- Pour wet mixture over the dry ingredients and stir to combine.
- Spread granola evenly on baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes, stirring half way through.
- Remove granola from the oven. Add dried cherries and cacao nibs.
- Turn oven down to 250*F. Return granola to oven and bake for an additional 10 minutes.
- Stir in remaining 1/2 cup shredded coconut.
- Allow granola to cool before storing in an airtight container. Granola will keep for up to 2 weeks.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I must get back to The Great Christmas Light Fight finale. Happy Holidays!