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Amaranth Granola with a Twist

Recipes

Shortly after I mentioned in my last post that I would get the recipe for amaranth granola from my sister Courtney, I heard my email program announce the arrival of a new message.

“Email!” it cried in Homestar Runner‘s voice (a relic of Peter’s and my college years when Homestar Runner was at its peak *pauses a moment to mourn*).

In my inbox waited the recipe for this granola:

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Now THAT’s an awesome sister.

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Amaranth is a protein-packed little grain rich in fiber and some essential amino acids (Edited to add: Just to be clear, amaranth is a seed that’s called a grain 🙂 ). It’s a shame amaranth isn’t used much in the U.S. – this grain is seriously tasty. You can find it online or in your local natural foods store.

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Sprinkled on top of a smoothie:

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Courtney’s recipe is adapted from this one. She made it lighter by cutting the amounts of fat and sugar, neither action of which interfered with the deliciousness of this granola. Nice job, sister!

Popped Amaranth and Coconut Granola

  Prep Time: 5 minutes

  Cook Time: 20 minutes

  Keywords: bake breakfast vegetarian amaranth

Ingredients (6 cups)

  • 1/2 cup amaranth seeds
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1/8 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup honey or maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 cup whole raw cashews or almonds, coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup unsweetened flake coconut
  • 1 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1 cup dried dried fruit, such as cranberries, cherries, or chopped apricots (optional)

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350°F. Heat a frying pan over medium heat and add amaranth. Use a lid or splatter screen to cover. Shake the pan continuously until about half of the seeds have popped, about 1 to 2 minutes. Set aside.

Combine canola oil, brown sugar, and honey/maple syrup in a small saucepan. Heat gently over medium-low heat until brown sugar has dissolved. Bring to a boil and cook until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside.

Combine sugar mixture, cashews, coconut, and oats to amaranth and stir. Spread evenly on a baking sheet. Bake until lightly browned, about 15 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes. Remove from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool completely. Stir in dried fruit if desired.

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Have a great weekend, dear reader!

Q: Have you ever tried amaranth? How did you prepare/eat it?

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14 Comments

  1. Hi Jessie! I’ve had amaranth in bread, but I love the thought of granola. And yes, your sister does sound amazing 🙂 Thank you for sharing another lovely post and delicious recipe. I’m a bit sick, but now I want to cook up a batch (and eat!) Have a wonderful weekend!

    1. Feel better, Monet! 🙁

  2. I’ve had amaranth in cereals before, but never “alone”. I’m always game for a new granola recipe so thanks for posting!

  3. Ok, so it actually has a good taste? I am going to pin this and make it at work one of these days. I’ve honestly never tried it. I thought it was a grain, but in your recipe you’re calling it a seed. Please explain 🙂 I know quinoa is a “seed” that is called a grain…is it the same idea?

    1. You got it! It’s also a seed that’s called a grain. The way I presented it is very confusing, so I’ll go change it. Besides this recipe, I’ve only ever tried amaranth in bread. This toasted treatment is really tasty, kind of nutty 🙂

  4. I think amaranth is one of the few whole grains I’ve never cooked with! This granola needs to happen in my life…soon

  5. Joyce McVay says:

    Jessie, I’m sure I’d have to order the Amaranth from the Internet. I’m curious if you can give the nutrition information and serving size for this recipe. I’m diabetic as you know, and nutrition info is important to me.

    Love you,

    Aunt Joyce

    1. Hi Aunt Joyce! I can sure do that – I’ll send you the info in the next few days and also put it here somewhere. Love, Jessie

    2. Hi Aunt Joyce! Here’s the nutrition info:

      Serving size: 1/4 cup
      Without fruit: 130 calories, 15 grams carb, 7 grams fat, 2 grams protein
      With fruit: 125 calories, 17 grams carb, 6 grams fat, 2 grams protein

      The calories and fat go up a tiny bit in the “without fruit” version because adding fruit decreases the amount of higher fat ingredients (i.e. oil and the nuts) in the same 1/4 cup serving. But, as you might expect, the carbs go down a little. 🙂

  6. I’m very curious about this granola. I’ve tried amaranth before, but it turned out to be a massive disappointment, I wonder if this could make a difference.

    1. I hope so! If you try it, let me know how it goes.

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