Sunday, October 2, 2011
Paleo Breakfast Cereal
Can there really be such a thing as a Paleo breakfast cereal or is this an oxymoron?
I was a breakfast cereal addict. A year ago I could not imagine starting my day without a bowl of cereal with cold milk and a handful of berries. When I decided to go grain free I thought that someone must make a cereal or granola that fits the Paleo lifestyle, but I was wrong. After searching the aisles of 20+ Whole Foods stores in 8 states (my healthy OCD) I came to the conclusion that if I wanted cereal for breakfast I would have to make it myself. There were plenty of excellent products, but most used sudo grains, buckwheat, quinoa, etc. and most of them had added sweeteners.
My criteria for a Paleo breakfast cereal is quite simple. It must be grain free, contain no added sweeteners and use raw organic ingredients if possible. Through much trial and error I have found a winning combination . Unfortunately, the only way to get the texture right is to bake the final product, which defeats the purpose of using raw ingredients. I am going to try dehydrating a batch instead of baking, but I am doubtful that it will be crunchy enough.
2 Cups Sunflower Seeds
2 Cups Pumpkin Seeds
2 Cups Coconut Flakes
1 Cup Walnuts coarsely chopped
1 Cup Goji Berries
¼ Cup Cacao Nibs
2 Tablespoons Cocoa Powder
4 Teaspoons Cinnamon
2 Teaspoons Ginger
½ Cup Almond Butter
3 Tablespoons Vanilla
In a large bowl mix together the sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, coconut flakes, walnuts and goji berries. Add the cacao nibs, cocoa powder, cinnamon and ginger and mix thoroughly. Add the almond butter and vanilla. Knead the almond butter into the other ingredients until everything is thoroughly coated. Spread the mixture evenly onto a baking sheet and bake at 300 degrees for 30 minutes stirring every 10 minutes.
I use Go Raw brand sunflower and pumpkin seeds. I have tried un-sprouted seeds and I have also sprouted my own, but the Go Raw seeds have a unique texture that is much more tender. I also prefer soaked and dehydrated walnuts that again are much more tender.
Kneading all the ingredients together is very important in this recipe. This is the only way that I have found to stick all the ingredients together with the almond butter. Kind of like making a meat loaf, you just have to get your hands in there and squish it together.
Through trial and error I have found that the drier the almond butter the better. I prefer Artisana raw organic for this recipe. It is typically much drier than other brands.
A one-cup serving is approximately 662 calories, 52 grams of fat, 24 grams of carbohydrates, 25 grams of protein and 12 grams of fiber. The downside of this recipe is the high omega-6 count from the nuts and seeds. When I perfected this recipe I was eating a bowl every morning and my omega-6 levels were noticeably higher. Now I limit myself to a few bowls a week. Here is a good article by Chris Kressler L.Ac about limiting your intake of nuts. Enjoy!