Friday, May 19, 2017

Puffed quinoa & rice, dried fruits & nuts granola with peanut butter & grape molasses

Granola or muesli is what I eat nine out of ten times for breakfast during the weekdays, with milk or yoghurt and some fresh, seasonal fruits. I get bored quite easily when I eat the same thing over and over again so I try to find ways to change my granola and muesli up with different flavor combinations, different grains, nuts and seeds, dried fruits etc.

Lately, I’ve been on a puffed rice/quinoa thing. About a year ago, I discovered them at my health food store and I’ve become a bit obsessed with them and add them to bars and various desserts for texture.

I have incorporated them in my granola and they have transformed it into something lighter and more filling at the same time. Apart from the puffed quinoa and puffed rice, they have walnuts and almonds, dried figs, apricots and raisins, sweetened by a syrup made with petimezi (grape molasses) and soft dark brown sugar. There’s butter in there as well as peanut butter to hold everything together and some ginger and cinnamon that gives the granola aroma and a hint of spice.

You bake it in the oven until it takes on a golden color, no more than ten minutes, and then you can either break it up into large chunks or smaller pieces. I prefer the large, crunchy chunks myself. They’re the best.

It’s a light granola that’s sweet yet not overly so and it’s full of nutty flavors. It’s crunchy with sticky textures from the dried fruits and crispy from the puffed quinoa and rice, and it’s going to make your breakfast by far brighter and tastier.

Puffed quinoa & rice, dried fruits & nuts granola with peanut butter & petimezi (grape molasses)
Adapted from Honey & Co. The baking book

You can use a mix of puffed quinoa and puffed rice, as I did, or you can use one or the other. You can use date molasses if you can’t find grape molasses.

Yield: 3 large jars

100 g puffed quinoa
75 g puffed rice
70 g walnuts, roughly chopped
70 g blanched almonds, roughly chopped
70 g golden raisins
70 g dried figs, diced
70 g dried apricots, diced
1½ tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
125 g unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
100 g petimezi (grape molasses)
100 g soft light brown sugar
Pinch of salt
100 g natural peanut butter (I used homemade)

Yoghurt, fresh fruits and extra nuts (in this case I used banana and sprinkled with ground pistachios), for serving

Special equipment: 2 medium-sized rimmed baking sheets (about 30x20 cm), baking paper

Line the 2 rimmed baking sheets with baking paper.
Preheat your oven to 190°C.

In a large bowl, add the puffed quinoa and puffed rice, the nuts, the dried fruits, the ginger and the cinnamon and mix well with a large spoon.

In a small pan, add the butter, the grape molasses, the sugar and the salt and place over a high heat. Stir until the butter melts and when it comes to the boil, add the peanut butter and stir to dissolve. Take off the heat and pour it over the bowl with the quinoa and nuts. Immediately, mix well, making sure to coat all the nuts and puffed quinoa and rice with the peanut butter syrup.

Divide the mixture between the two baking sheets and spread evenly, flattening out the mixture with the back of a spoon or a spatula.

Place on the middle rack of the preheated oven and bake for 10 minutes. If your oven is small like mine, bake first the one tray and then the other. The granola should be golden on top when done.

Remove from the oven and allow the granola to cool on the trays completely. Then break it into large or smaller clusters depending on how you prefer it. I love the large clusters.

Transfer the granola to jars or airtight containers and enjoy!
It keeps for a couple of weeks at room temperature.


  1. When you mention puffed quinoa, what exactly do you mean? I can find
    packets of quinoa seeds, but not puffed quinoa, what can I
    substitute this with, thanks

    1. Puffed quinoa is puffed quinoa, I buy it already puffed (like popcorn but without any additives, it's just quinoa). Look it up on the internet in case you could make your own. I guess you can. You can substitute with puffed rice.