Being :: Clean Living and Grain-Free Granola

August 27, 2012

Being: Conscious, mortal existence; life.

Every month we welcome two families, two people, two voices to share their stories in whatever way they chose. We hope that you find joy in their daily lives, and their simple habit of just being.


Last year, when I moved to the Deep South from Boulder, Co I was shocked by the low quality of groceries that I had access to. We had found ourselves waist-deep in a land of fried chicken wings and smashed potatoes. Unlike our previous habitat, Georgia didn’t have a health food store on every corner. Organic foods were hard to come by, and terribly expensive.

For the first year in Georgia, we ate too much fast food. Too many fried chicken wings, hamburgers, and the like. After months of processed, disgusting food, my love and I readjusted our budget, and committed to going to our local farmer’s market each week, and ‘clean’ up our year of ‘dirty living.

We have gone ‘kind of Paleo’, with a focus on whole foods (we refused to take our legumes). We’ve ditched the dairy¬–except for goat’s milk and cultured dairy. We’ve stopped eating processed foods, cut out nearly all types of flour and grains, sugar (except for a smidgen of honey here and there), and trashed anything that isn’t ‘au natural’ from out pantry.

The reality of a eating a paleo-esque diet is that defaulting to fast food is impossible, grocery shopping at the commissary on base is difficult due to our lack of organic options and cooking becomes key. What I have found most important in this process is cooking, and the rhythm that is regular cooking, sitting at mealtimes, engaging with each other instead of the television.

One of the hardest meals to adjust to was breakfast. Both my love and I have been diehard cereal fans, and cutting store bought cereals out has been an honest struggle (Oh Maple Life we miss you). We find ourselves craving cold breakfasts, especially in the drippy Georgian heat of summer. As such, I found a Paleo way of cooking granola. It is easy, everyone loves it, people constantly ask for the recipe, and I have to say it is divinely delicious. Without further adieu:

Paleo-ish Granola

3 cups of various Nuts and Seeds (I’m partial to Pecans, Almonds, and Walnuts)

½ cup Flaxseeds

½ cup Unsweetened Shredded Coconut

1 teaspoon Nutmeg

2 teaspoons Cinnamon

1/3 cup Coconut Oil, Melted

¼ cup Maple Syrup, Honey, and/or Agave Nectar (or a mix of the three!)

1. Pre-heat oven to 275.

2. Combine various nuts, flax seeds, and unsweetened coconut in a bowl.

3. Add nutmeg, cinnamon, and kosher salt. Stir well.

4. Add Coconut Oil, and sweetener of choice. Mix well.

5. Spread onto cooking sheet and put in the pre-heated oven. Cook for about an hour. Be sure to stir every 10-15 minutes to avoid burning. You’ll know it is done when the nuts and coconut are golden, but not charred!

6. Cool, add coconut or almond milk or yogurt and enjoy!!!!

Note: A lot of these types of recipes call for dried fruit, which you are welcome to add towards the end of cooking. In our household we don’t, simply because we have trouble finding non-sweetened dried fruit in our area. Also! If it gets too brown, or you prefer a less ‘toasted’ flavor, take it out early! It won’t make a bit of difference.


September is only days away, and so, this is Makenna’s final post for us here in the Being series.  A sincere thanks to Makenna for sharing her thoughts with us here each week!  You can continue to check up on her at her personal blog, CALL SIGN: Wife.


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Liz Sniegocki August 28, 2012 at 8:16 am

Hmmm, looks yummy… Thanks for the recipe!

Makenna August 28, 2012 at 7:01 pm

But of course! It is a cinch too. Just watch for burning! (I am the queen of burning perfectly delicious granola)

Stephinie (GypsyMama) August 28, 2012 at 1:37 pm

This looks delicious!! I do use some oats in our granola…. but mostly nuts & seeds. Makes for a breakfast that lasts until lunch for sure! I’m a southern transplant too. I made my way from Duluth, MN to the sweltering heat of south Louisiana! I know just what you mean about finding whole foods :) Take care~

Makenna August 28, 2012 at 7:03 pm

It is such a struggle. has been my saving grace. I buy almost all of my dried whole foods on it now. It is brilliant! And I can put them on auto-refresh. Saves me the trouble of remembering ‘hmmm…where did I find lentils last time?’

Stephinie (GypsyMama) August 28, 2012 at 7:59 pm

That’s what we do to. Have you tried sprouted lentils? They are awesome!

Makenna August 30, 2012 at 8:19 pm

I have not! I’ll have to put it on my list of things to try out.

KC August 29, 2012 at 12:26 am

Thanks so much for this recipe! I’m always looking for new granola recipes.

Makenna September 4, 2012 at 6:27 am

You are so welcome KC!

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