Chocolate Pecan Granola 

I’m one of those people that take a few minutes (at least) to fully wake up in the morning. While I don’t mind making a bigger effort on a weekend brunch-type meal, most mornings I just want something fast, filling, and healthy—that’s where this granola comes in! I make a big batch of it and then I just pour it into a bowl like cereal in the morning. It’s really easy to make and the cacao nibs add a nice touch of chocolate to the granola (and who isn’t up for a little chocolate in the morning?).Chocolate Pecan Granola, makes 8 cups
Recipe adapted from Apple Pie Granola in The China Study Quick and Easy Cookbook

8 cups rolled oats
1 cup pitted dates
1 cup water
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 cup cacao nibs
1/2 chopped pecans

Take your pitted dates and water and add them to a blender. Blend until a smooth paste forms. Cook your date puree in a large pot over medium heat just until the mixture starts to boil. Add in your salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg and stir to combine.Add your oats to the pot and stir so they are evenly coated with the date mixture. Allow the oats to cook another 5 minutes while stirring periodically to keep from burning. Mix in your chopped pecans and pour the granola onto two baking sheets. Bake at 325° for 20 min with one sheet on the middle rack and one on the rack below. After 20 minutes, give each sheet a stir with a spatula, switch the rack placement, and bake for another 15-20 minutes. Allow the granola to cool, mix in your cacao nibs and store in an airtight container.  I like to top my granola with bananas and eat it with almond milk, but you can eat this over yogurt, in a smoothie bowl, or even plain! This makes a good amount of granola so I can get at least a week of breakfasts out of it before having to make another batch, so that’s another plus for me too. If you wanted to up the chocolate factor, you could add some cacao powder into the date puree as well to make it a little more decadent. But I love how the cacao nibs interact with the pecan flavor, so it’s the perfect amount of chocolate for breakfast, if you ask me … enjoy! xo. Laura

Credits // Author and Photography: Laura Gummerman. Photos edited with A Color Story Desktop.