Today’s post and recipe come from award-winning chef, restaurateur and cookbook author Seamus Mullen. An avid kefir fan, Chef Mullen is passionate about the idea that real food heals and is a leading authority in the conversation on food, health and wellness.
For many years, I was really unhealthy and sick; I was suffering from Rheumatoid Arthritis, a chronic inflammatory auto-immune disease. Over the past three and a half years, I’ve managed to turn my health around, reversing the disease and reclaiming my health. While there were may factors that helped me on my journey, food was and continues to be, my most valuable medicine.
Along the way I made many discoveries about how the foods I ate impacted my disease and how I felt, but perhaps the single most valuable lesson for me has been reducing the overall amount of carbs I eat and increasing healthy fats, protiens and veggies. This doesn’t mean that I don’t eat carbs at all, but simply that I’m aware of what kinds of carbs I eat and how frequently I eat them.
As a busy chef and active athlete, if I know that I’ve got a particularly big day or tough workout ahead of me, then it’s a good time to plan a morning meal with some sensible carbs and a good balance of fats and protiens. I’m always looking for ways to create quick, efficient, delicious and healthy meals and a little homemade, gluten-free granola with kefir is the perfect way to gear up for an intense day.
I came up with this granola as a great way to start the day because it’s made with healthy nuts and seeds and is low in sugar and high in healthy fats. Mix in some Whole Milk Plain Kefir, or add your own twist by trying it with your favorite flavor of Lifeway Kefir. When you combine the two, you have a great, easy and delicious power breakfast.
Seamus Mullen’s Tropical Power Granola
- 1 cup of your favorite flavor of Lifeway Kefir
- 2 cups gluten-free rolled oats, or a mixture of rolled oats, kamut flakes and spelt flakes (if not gluten-free)
- ¼ cup chia seeds
- ¼ cup raw honey
- ½ cup melted coconut oil
- ¼ cup unsweetened coconut flakes
- ½ cup raw cashews, macadamia or almonds or a mix of all three
- ½ cup ancient grains (red/black quinoa, teff, buckwheat groats or millet)
- ½ cup dried fruit (I like a mix of cranberries, pineapple, apricots or mango)
Heat the oven to 250°F and line a sheet tray with parchment paper.
In one bowl, combine the rolled oats mix, coconut flakes, chia seeds and nuts/grains. In another bowl, combine the honey and the coconut oil.
Combine the contents of the two bowls together before spreading the mixture in an even layer on the sheet tray. Use more than one tray if necessary.
Place the tray in the oven and bake, stirring frequently, until the granola is evenly golden, about 45 minutes to an hour.
Remove from the oven and let cool before mixing in dried fruit. Once completely cooled, store in an airtight container.
Find out more about Chef Seamus Mullen by visiting his website. Be sure to follow him on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for more of his recipes and tips for how to live a healthy, happy life.