Hooray for that!
I've successfully cleaned out our cupboards and fridge from all things bad for us, stocked shelves with healthier options of snacks and staples, and actually even got back into the routine of making some of our most loved unprocessed foods! Hoping to continue on this lovely path! Wheeeeeeee!
Ok so I have to tell you, though! I received a generous 32 ounce jar of Tropical Traditions delicious Gold Label Virgin Organic Coconut Oil in the mail a few weeks back. SCORE to the max! My husband and I live off of coconut oil! We love it so very very much! It is one of our main household staples. I couldn't believe Tropical Traditions wanted to offer us some actually! This was such an answer to prayer, for us. Coconut oil can be quite pricey and we had run out - so to be offered such a large quantity as a gracious gift from them, was just amazing.
Needless to say, once we received it we dove right in! We enjoyed this jar smeared on toast, used some to sauté yummy foods (has a very high smoking point so it's great for cooking), I even rubbed a little bit into the tips of my hair for a deeper conditioning on my super split ends, and used some on my wintery dry cracked hands. Coconut oil rocks. So many versatile possibilities. Seriously. Interested in just a few ways to use? Click here for inspiration!
If you've never tried coconut oil- please do. So so so good (and good for you...in moderation of course).
One thing I love to do with coconut oil is use it in place of butter or oil in baked goods. Having started back up on my healthy train, coconut oil is a huge daily food staple. My favorite recipe- granola! And boy do we Mains love us some granola. You probably knew that already though. Homemade = the best. Having run out of our unprocessed breakfast love, I knew I needed to bake a large batch of granola asap. My husband eats it by the bowlful every day!
I decided to really go with the whole coconut thing in this particular granola recipe. I also had a bag of untoasted sliced almonds- so "Coconut Almond" granola it was!
Little tip- when looking for the unsweetened coconut flakes, please get just that. Refrain from the sweetened coconut....confetti stuff. Filled with sugar, it just sort of loses it's nutritional value, which we're sort of counting on here. Coconut is very nutritious! You can find such bags at your local health food store- Whole Foods or (like I did) Sprouts.
COCONUT ALMOND GRANOLA
Makes approx 11 cups
Serving size about 3/4 cup
- 6 cups old fashioned oats
- 1 3/4 cups raw untoasted sliced almonds
- 3 tablespoons chia seeds
- 4 large egg whites (Can omit for vegan recipe. End product won't be as crunchy, but still yummy!)
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 cup raw organic honey
- 1/4 cup 100% grade A maple syrup
- 1/3 cup melted and slightly cooled Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil
- 2 1/2 teaspoons almond extract
- 2 cups organic unsweetened coconut flakes, divided
1. Preheat oven to 350*F, set a rack in the middle or upper part of your oven, and set out two standard cookie sheet pans. No need to grease or line pans- your granola won't stick.
3. Mix together your melted and slightly cooled coconut oil, honey, maple syrup, and almond extract. Combine well. Here's a great way to measure the honey and maple so that it doesn't stick to your measuring cup!
4. In a medium sized bowl whisk your egg whites and salt until your whites are frothy. This should take about 3-5 minutes of hand whisking. If you choose to do so in a stand mixer (or use a hand mixer) just beat until frothy, not soft peaks.
5. Combine the honey/maple syrup mixture into your frothy egg white and combine thoroughly. Pour your new egg mixture over your oat mixture and combine completely. There will be a tendency for dried oats to sink to the bottom- so make sure you mix very very well.
6. Once combined, divide your granola between your two cookie pans (or more if your pans are on the smaller side) and spread out so that it's a nice 1/4-1/2" layer. No need to press down really- just make sure it's spread out nice and evenly.
7. Bake 15-20 minutes on that upper rack, turning your pan half way through baking time to insure even browning and baking. Remove pans from oven, and flip and toss granola in pan breaking up any large pieces, with a spatula. Make sure to bring the sides into the middle (they will want to brown quicker than the middle) and move the middle out. Stir and mix up well. Then spread out so it's a single layer again.
8. Bake another 10 minutes or until your granola is crispy and a golden brown throughout. Again, watch the sides of bottom of granola- if it's darkening too much, simply remove pan from oven, stir up again, and add back to oven. Don't go anywhere- granola can burn quickly so continue to check pans every now and then to prevent said burning
9. Remove pans from oven and allow to cool completely. Once cooled, add granola to a large bowl and mix in your remaining 1 cup of coconut flakes. Then simply add to a large air tight container and munch away!
For printable recipe, click here.
Now for the neat-o part! Tropical Traditions has offered to give one lucky Sweet Lavender Bake Shoppe reader a 32 ounce jar of their coconut oil! I don't know if you know how much 32 ounces is....but seriously friends, it's a hefty amount! You'll be able to try ALL those coconut oil recipes and crafts you've been pinning! Coconut oil should always come in this large of an amount!
Win 1 quart of Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil!
Tropical Traditions is America’s source for coconut oil. Their Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil is hand crafted in small batches by family producers, and it is the highest quality coconut oil they offer. You can read more about how virgin coconut oil is different from other coconut oils on their website: What is Virgin Coconut Oil?
Tropical Traditions also carries other varieties of affordable high quality coconut oil. Visit their website to check on current sales, to learn about the many uses of coconut oil, and to read about all the advantages of buying coconut oil online. Since the FDA does not want us to discuss the health benefits of coconut oil on a page where it is being sold or given away, here is the best website to read about the health benefits of coconut oil.
5. Follow Tropical Traditions on Twitter and leave a separate comment on this blog saying you did so or that you already were!
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*Tropical Traditions provided me with a free sample of this product to review, and I was under no obligation to review it if I so chose. Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review or sponsor a product giveaway in return for the free product. All recipe pictures, opinions, and the recipe itself are my own.