Mixed stone fruit granola

Happy Friday to you all! So, I actually had a different post ready for today, but I just ate a big bowl of this granola with greek yogurt for breakfast (seriously! check my twitter :) and I was so overwhelmed with love and yummyness that I had to post it today! So you will have to wait until tomorrow for Michael’s newest cocktail creation- sorry Julie but I promise it will be up tomorrow!

If you don’t already know, I LOVE granola. Serious, make a batch a week (at least!) love. We eat it on everything, with greek yogurt, on salads, frozen yogurt, on top of smoothies, as a dry snack. Sometimes I think I am keeping the Quaker Oats company in business with all my bulk purchases of dry old fashioned oats! And, if you saw this post you already know my granola secret, but more on that later.

I usually like pretty simple granola texturally and prefer to add flavor into the oats themselves so I don’t put a lot of “extras” in my granola, but this granola is different. It is silled with delicious dried stone fruits and I am reminded that change can be good :)

First step: gather your ingredients

There is my secret weapon! Egg whites! I don’t like my granola super sweet and I found (after many many batches of granola) that egg whites give you the crunch you want without having to add too much sweetener. I also just some apricot jam I stole from my visit to my grandparent’s house over the holidays. Ginny (my grandma) makes amazing jam so I always come home with a jar or two for the freezer. The apricot flavor works great here, but store bought jam would work just as well – just don’t tell Ginny! So, combine all these ingredients in a big bowl and move on to the fruit.

You can use any combo of stone fruits that you like, but these are three of my favorites. Plus, I like the subtle difference in taste that you get when using a variety of fruit. The stone fruit also works really well with the vanilla in this granola. Mmmm why did I eat my breakfast so fast?!?

Chop chop chop your dried fruit and then get ready for another secret granola trick of the trade. Toss the dried fruit in just enough olive oil to coat all the pieces (about a teaspoon depending on how much you have). A lot of recipes call for adding the dried fruit after the granola has baked but you guys have got to try it this way! Tossing the fruit in olive oil allows you to bake it all together and get awesome flavor from your fruit because the oil keeps the dried fruit moist.

So, give it all a big stir…

And pop it in the oven to bake! You will end up with granola so delicious your co-workers will look at you weird when they see you down a bowl in 2 minutes flat. Hypothetically of course. That definitely didn’t happen to me.

Enjoy!

Mixed Stone Fruit Granola

2 cups old fashioned oats

3 T ground flaxseed

2 heaping T apricot jam

2 teaspoons good vanilla extract

2 egg whites, lightly beaten

1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg

3 T agave nectar

3/4 cup dried stone fruit, chopped

olive oil for coating fruit

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine all ingredients but dried fruit in a big bowl and stir. Chop dried fruit and toss with just enough olive oil to coat. Add coated fruit to oat mixture and stir. Spread onto a baking sheet and bake for 20-25 minutes, stirring at least 3 times during cooking. Let cook completely on the baking sheet.

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