oats n' notes

Food & lifestyle from the the granola factory bakery

Tag Archives: granola

Granola Croutons


by Suzanne Virgilio

I don’t know about you, but I LOVE salads. Salads are the opening number to a dinner that introduces the season to be celebrated. I suppose one reason salads are so popular is that it allows us to eat something delicious and nutritious. What could be better? When it comes to making salads, in my world, the crunchier the better! I’m a huge fan of croutons, nuts & smoky flavors; so I thought, why not develop a crouton that incorporates all my favor things? Not only delicious, but also good for you! I hope you enjoy this blog offering; even if your salad is your meal, you are eating well!

Savory & Sweet Granola Croutons

Oven 350

Bake 10-15 minutes, until golden

Makes about a dozen 2-inch croutons


  • 1 egg white
  • 1 Tbsp. honey
  • ½ cup Extra Virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup Granola Factory Honey Pecan Granola
  • ¼ cup oat flour
  • ¼ cup sunflower seeds
  • 2 Tbsp quinoa
  • 2 Tbsp. ground flax seed
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp onion powder
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
  • ½ tsp kosher salt



  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • In a liquid measuring cup combine the olive oil, egg white & honey. Combine well with a fork. Set aside
  • In a medium bowl combine the rest of the ingredients and stir to combine.
  • Give the liquid mixture a good stir again and pour over the granola mixture. Use a rubber spatula to combine.
  • Line a 9 X 13-inch baking pan with parchment paper.
  • Spread the granola mixture onto the pan using an offset spatula. Spread to an even thickness (or thinness).
  • Bake in 350 degree oven for 10 – 15 minutes until golden. Croutons will spread together and become one sheet.
  • Allow crouton to cool completely. Mixture will harden.
  • Once cooled break into crouton size pieces. Store in airtight zip lock until ready to use. Can be made 1 day in advance


When the air becomes crisp and the leave begin to change colors, I crave this delicious reflection of the season’s offerings. Combine your favorite greens and garnish with your favorite apple slices, dried cranberries & shaved Parmesan Reggiano. The following vinaigrette completes a perfect fall or winter salad.


Maple Vinaigrette

Makes approximately 1 cup

Store in refrigerator until serving

Allow to come to room temp. before serving


  • 1/4-cup pure maple syrup
  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • ½ cup Canola oil
  • 1 Tbsp coarse grain Dijon mustard
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 crushed clove of garlic


  • Combine the first 5 ingredients in a liquid measuring cup or small jar.
  • Whisk mixture with a wire whisk or fork to combine.
  • Add 1 crushed clove of garlic and allow it to macerate in vinaigrette. Remove clove of garlic before serving


Mixed Berry Crisp with Granola Crumble


by Dea Castrejon

Although I like to think of myself as a fairly healthy eater,  I love an indulgence every once in a while.  Sometimes you just need a little dessert after dinner, righhhhht?!

I know I cannot claim this granola berry crisp to be super healthy, but I will say that it is much lighter than some desserts.  And, it is perfect for a summer treat!


*makes 2 small crisps

2 cups mixed berries

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1/4 cup sugar

dash of almond extract

crumble topping

5 tablespoons unsalted butter

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup flour

1/2 Organic Honey Pecan granola

Preheat oven to 350ºF.  In a mixing bowl, whip the butter and sugar together.  Add almond extract and flour and mix in well.  Finally, add the granola and fold in.  Set aside.


Wash berries and let set to dry.  In a mixing bowl, toss washed berries together with sugar and cornstarch.


In a small baking dish, layer berries until the pan is about 3/4 full.  Grab the bowl of crumble and sprinkle it on.  Pat down slightly.


Bake in the oven for about 15 minutes or until crumble starts to turn golden brown.  Allow the granola berry crisp to cool for 10 minutes before eating.



Caramel Apple Pie Bar with Granola Crumble


by Dea Castrejon

So, if you didn’t already know, here at the Granola Factory, we make the amazing, deliciously decadent and addictive Bethlehem Bars.  Yesssss, they are simply magnificent!  It is an oat shortbread cookie, topped with chocolate chunks, roasted pecans, homemade salted caramel, and shortbread crumbled on top!

Upon thinking up new granola recipes for this blog series, I thought it would be so great to do a bar!  And I am proud of this guy!  It is a salted caramel apple pie bar topped with a Native Berry granola crumble!  Do it…make it now!



2 sticks of unsalted butter

3/4 cup granulated sugar

2 1/4 cups flour (reserve 1/2 cup for crumble)


2 Granny Smith apples, peeled and thinly sliced

1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

1 tablespoon sugar

1 1/2 tablespoons flour


1/2 cup shortbread dough reserve

3/4 cup Native Berry Granola

Salted Caramel

2 cups granulated sugar

12 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 cup heavy cream

1 tablespoon flaked sea salt

See posted link for directions on caramel: http://www.browneyedbaker.com/homemade-salted-caramel-sauce-recipe/

Preheat oven to 350ºF.  Cream together butter and sugar.  Add the flour until just incorporated.
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Reserve 1/2 cup of the dough in a separate mixing bowl.  Add the granola to this and set in the refrigerator until later.
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In a parchment lined baking dish (I used an 8×8 pan), press the shortbread dough into the bottom of the pan.  Bake for about 20-25 minutes, or until a golden tint starts to appear on the crust.


While the crust is baking, peal and slice your apples.  In a mixing bowl, combine apples, flour, sugar, and cinnamon.
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Once crust is golden brown, add apple pie layer to the crust.

Then add the crumble on top.  Finish it off with a light drizzle of salted caramel (the recipe is posted in a link above).


Place the baking dish back in the oven for another 15 minutes.  Let cool for about 15 minutes before cutting and serving.
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Enjoy with a scoop of ice cream or whipped cream and a drizzle of salted caramel!

Granola Battered French Toast



by Dea Castrejon

As I have mentioned many times, I was a picky child when it came to food growing up.  Nonetheless, my mother worked around my oddities and still managed to create my favorite dishes.

One of my favorites was her french toast.  Now, this is not your traditional, soft bread restaurant french toast.  In fact, my mother is 100% German, so we have always called it German Toast.  The biggest difference to me between traditional French toast and my mom’s German toast is the extra crunchy texture and dark color (not burnt, but dark!).  If this sounds interesting or delicious to you, then you may like todays recipe.  On account of 30 ways to granola, I have decided to take my mom’s french toast base and battered it with granola.  Let’s see how it turns out!

Granola French Toast

Sourdough bread loaf, sliced

1 cup All Natural Honey Pecan granola

1 egg

1/4-1/2 cup milk

1/2 tablespoon cinnamon

1/2 tablespoon granulated sugar

Let’s start by cracking an egg in a pie pan.  Add milk, cinnamon, and sugar into the same pan and mix together.  Place granola in another pie pan and set aside.


From here, we will dunk both sides of the bread into the cinnamon-milky-egg mixture.  Then, press the soaked bread into the granola.


Finally, heat up a pan on high with some vegetable or canola oil.  Once hot, add up to 2 slices of bread at one time.  Cook for about 3-4 minutes before flipping.  Repeat on the second side.

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Serve with butter, syrup, and maybe some strawberries for garnish!  Yummm!
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Granola Chocolate Chip Cookies


by Dea Castrejon

To me, chocolate chip cookies are an American classic!  I think it is very important to have a great chocolate chip recipe in your bag of baking tricks. I am sharing my chocolate chip recipe with you, but I am sure you can guess at this point that I have added our not so secret ingredient of granola.  Give these cookies a try…I guarantee you will want more than one!


1 1/4 cups flour

1 cup All Natural Honey Pecan Granola

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick), room temperature

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla

3/4 cup chocolate chips

Begin by preheating oven to 375ºF.  In a large mixing bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, and baking soda.  Set aside.

Next, cream together the granulated sugar and brown sugar with the butter. Add the egg and beat until smooth (about 2 minutes).

Mix together the flour and butter-sugar mixture.  Lastly, fold in the granola and the chocolate chips.




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I like to make big cookies, so grab a large chunk of dough and place on a parchment lined cookie sheet or baking stone.
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Bake for about 10-12 minutes or until the edges start to turn in color.  This will dish out firm but gooey-on-the-inside cookies!  Enjoy with a cold glass of milk!
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Protein Smoothie bowl topped with Granola, Fruit, and Nuts


by Dea Castrejon

This last weekend, my husband participated in a relay marathon with some coworkers.  He happened to be running the first leg of the race, so the plan was for me to drop him off at the start line and pick him up at the end of his running stint.  It was also planned that the group of guys would be meeting at the finish line for “high-fives,” pictures, etc.

Anyway, I knew that it would be important to properly replenish the fluids and nutrients that my husband lost during the race, so being the wonderful wife that I am (at least I hope so!), I prepared my husband a “backyard bowl.”  I stole this term from the Santa Barbara eatery, ironically known as Backyard Bowls.  These bowls are typically filled with some sort of smoothie and then topped with an array of healthy supplements, such as seeds, fruit, or nuts.  Doesn’t this sound awesome!?!

This turned out to be the perfect treat, and it took little to no time to prepare!  Here is my rendition of a backyard bowl, but go crazy and mix it up with your favorite ingredients!



*makes two large backyard bowls

1 banana

handful (about 1-2 cups) frozen strawberries

handful (about 1-2 cups) frozen mixed berries (blueberries, raspberries, blackberries)

1 orange, juiced

1 scoop protein powder (I use a plant based protein)

1/2-1 cup almond milk (or milk of choice)




1/2 cup Organic Honey Pecan granola

1 tablespoon dried cranberries

1 tablespoon raw pecans

1 tablespoon pistachios

1 teaspoon chia seeds

1 tablespoon chocolate chips

1/2 nectarine, thinly sliced

1 kiwi, sliced

Blend smoothie ingredients together and pour into 2 bowls.
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Distribute topping evenly over the smoothie.  This is about as easy as it gets!  Grab a spoon and replenish!
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Quinoa Salad with Organic Honey Pecan Granola


by Dea Castrejon

When we decided to start this blog series, “30 Ways in 30 Days,” it was much easier to come up with sweet ideas/recipes for granola.  This was expected.  The savory dishes, or recipes that didn’t revolve around baking something (although there is nothing wrong with that!), were a little more difficult or imaginative.

Well, one day when I was browsing pinterest for recipes, I came across this simple and healthy quinoa salad that caught my eye.  I couldn’t imagine that some of our Organic Honey Pecan Variety wouldn’t add the perfect salty and sweet crunch to this salad.  Besides a few additions or substitutions, this salad is a replica from the great blog, iFOODreal.

Granola, Avocado, Blueberry, Toasted Pecan, and Quinoa salad

*makes about 3 cups of cooked quinoa plus your additions

1 cup uncooked quinoa

2 cups water

1 1/2 cups Organic Honey Pecan Granola

1 cup toasted pecans

3/4 cup blueberries

1 avocado

Honey Lime Basil Dressing

1 1/2 tablespoons basil, chopped

1/2 lime, juiced

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon honey

To start, bring 2 cups of water to boil in a pot.  Add 1 cup of quinoa, and simmer until thoroughly cooked (about 15 minutes).  Pour cooked quinoa into a mixing bowl and allow to cool.





While waiting, let’s make the dressing.  In a small ramekin, combine all ingredients in no particular order and mix together.



Next, let’s preheat the oven to 350ºF to toast the pecans unless you prefer to buy them already roasted.  Place in oven for only 5-10 minutes or until they are slightly darkened.


Finally, wash blueberries and set aside.  Cut up your avocado and put aside, as well.



Once your quinoa has cooled, mix all your ingredients together in a bowl including the dressing.  How easy and delicious right?  Serve and enjoy!

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*Recipe obtained by http://ifoodreal.com/blueberry-avocado-and-toasted-pecans-quinoa-salad/.