I have a craving for some healthy granola. So thanks to oats and leftover sourdough starter, melon seeds and pumpkin seeds, I now have a sugar free granola recipe. And lucky for me, this recipe was almost free by using ingredients most would normally throw away.
But I’m creative. And I’m also not one to throw food away if I don’t have to.
It’s pumpkin season
It’s the beginning of October and fall has finally arrived.
Actually, fall has been around for a few weeks now in San Francisco.
Not in terms of the weather, oh no. In fact, September was quite pleasant in San Francisco. We rarely saw a warm, sunny day from May through August. But September hosted a couple of warm weekends. It also welcomed in the ubiquitous fall fruit: pumpkin.
Even though it’s just the beginning of October, Rob and I’ve been eating pumpkins for weeks. The fall produce is here and I’m loving it.
I admit I wish I could have eaten more peaches, plums, apricots and mangoes this summer. Yet I can’t be disappointed that apples, pears, pumpkins, persimmons and pomegranates are popping up at our local farmer’s market.
This is our third or fourth pumpkin of the year and I’ve finally made a recipe out of it: granola.
This recipe is a little odd because it contains fruit from two different seasons. On one hand, I have seeds from various melons— summer fruit. On the other hand, we have the pumpkin: the most fallish fruit there is. My fermented sugar free granola recipe serves as a transition between between the end of summer and beginning of fall.
Goodbye, summer. I’ll see you next year.
Hello, fall! And hello pumpkin season!
Sugar free granola?
You caught me. This isn’t actually sugar free granola. But it’s pretty close.
This recipe is 100% free from refined or added sugar. And when I say that, I promise there aren’t any of the “natural” or artificial sweeteners either. No honey, agave, coconut sugar, brown rice syrup or even Splenda.
Technically, it’s “no sugar added” granola. Or low sugar granola.
I didn’t use any fruit, either. The only sugar in this recipe comes from the juice and pulp left on the seeds. Because of this, the granola doesn’t taste sweet. Don’t worry; it’s still full of crunch and taste.
If you want your granola to be on the sweeter side, you can add some dried fruit to the recipe. I recommend dates or raisins as they’re the unlikely to have added oil or sugar.
Now: get ready to fall in love with this sugar free granola recipe. It’s the perfect way to healthfully welcome fall in your kitchen.
Say goodbye to summer and hello to fall with this easy, sugar free granola recipe. It’s simple to make with leftover melon, squash and/or pumpkin seeds. My favorite aspects? It’s fermented and uses ingredients you would normally throw away.
Vegan and free of added salt, sugar, oil and soy. Nut-free and/or seed free at your discretion.
Reasons to love this recipe: Uses leftover ingredients; seasonal recipe; 10 ingredients or less; easy to make
Yields around 4 cups of granola
- 2 cups fresh nuts or seeds, with pulp (I used a combination of melon seeds and pumpkin seeds)
- 150 grams 100% hydration sourdough starter**
- 2 cups rolled oats
- Cinnamon, to taste
- Ginger, to taste
- Cloves, to taste
- Nutmeg, to taste
In a saucepan, heat your nuts/seeds on high to break down the pulp attached. Don’t bring it to a boil, but stir it constantly while you warm them up. Once the seeds are free of the pulp and there are no large chunks left, transfer the seeds and pulp to a mixing bowl. Allow the seeds to cool slightly before proceeding (around 5 minutes).
When the seed mixtures has cooled enough to touch, add the oats and mix thoroughly. Next add the sourdough starter and mix again. Transfer the wet granola to a sealable container. Plastic or glass is best. Set this mixture aside and allow it to ferment between 18-24 hours.
After the granola has fermented, break the wet mixture apart into chunks with your hands . Spread across a large baking sheet. Generously sprinkle the granola chunks with cinnamon and ginger to your taste. Very lightly sprinkle with cloves and nutmeg.
Bake the granola for 1 to 1 ½ hours (mine took 1 hour 20 minutes) at 400 F. Mix the granola every 20 minutes to break the chunks into smaller pieces and allow the granola to evenly dry out. In the end, you want the mixture to be dry yet unburnt.
Allow the granola to thoroughly cool before you transfer to an airtight storage space.
Enjoy your homemade granola as a trail mix, muesli or on top of your favorite plant-based yogurt.
*No sourdough starter? Divide the weight of the starter in the recipe by two. Use that number to mix equal parts whole wheat flour with water. Allow to ferment or sit at room temperature for a day, if possible.