The first time I remember grandma making us buckwheat muffins, I announced that they tasted like gritty birdseed. I had come into her kitchen expecting a standard blueberry muffin, only to be handed something grey-ish in hue and full of seeds/nuts. It looked more like bird food than people food. Hence, birdseed muffins. After that run-in with buckwheat, I always checked with grandma on what type of flour she was using in her baked goods…I was an all purpose flour child back then who was occasionally tricked by something called “white whole wheat flour” but would never go for treats baked with buckwheat or, dare I even say it, tapioca flour.
Little did I know how “hip” Grandma was with her gluten free flours and grains way before they went “mainstream”. I’m honestly not sure where she found something as foreign as buckwheat float in our small town in Upstate New York. Now, I’m pretty sure you can find buckwheat in most grocery stores that have a full baking or bulk foods section.
While I’m still not particularly fond of baking with buckwheat flour (I prefer oat, almond or 1 to 1 GF), I do like buckwheat groats. They’re a great source of essential amino acids (aka protein), which is something I try to add more of to my breakfasts.
As the weather warms up, I find myself transitioning my breakfast routine from my gold standard bowl of oatmeal into a more “summertime” appropriate bowl of yogurt topped with granola and fresh fruit. This granola recipe is my all time favorite and is made with (surprise, surprise) hearty, protein rich buckwheat groats. It’s naturally sweetened with maple syrup and crisps up with the help of olive oil. With the addition of chopped nuts, it’s a tasty way to pack in more protein at breakfast.
So thanks Grandma, for pushing those birdseed muffins. I eventually came around.Print
A recipe for healthy granola – naturally sweetened with maple syrup and made with hearty buckwheat groats for added protein.
- 5 cups old fashion oats
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup buckwheat groats
- 1 cup chopped nuts (I like a mix of almonds and pecans)
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon almond extract (optional)
- 1/3 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
Preheat oven to 350°. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
In a large mixing bowl, mix together the oats, buckwheat groats, cinnamon, salt and nuts. Then stir in olive oil, maple syrup and almond extract until all the dry ingredients are coated evenly. Spread evenly in prepared baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes, then remove from oven to stir, sprinkle coconut flakes on top and then bake for another 10. Don’t worry if the granola doesn’t look especially crispy yet – it’ll crisp up as it cools. Let granola cool on pan without stirring – this helps create more big, tasty oat clusters.
Store in airtight container. Enjoy with yogurt, milk, as a smoothie topping or with warm applesauce for a healthy apple crisp alternative.
Do not stir in the coconut flakes at the beginning with the other dry ingredients – if they bake for the full 25 minutes, they’ll burn.
Buckwheat Groats: You can find them in most bulk food sections, but I like to use Bob’s Red Mill Buckwheat Groats.
Keywords: granola, naturally sweetened, cereal, breakfast, healthy granola, gluten free, buckwheat groats