oatmeal cookie granola

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i cannot get enough of this oatmeal cookie granola. i first made it last year and have many dozens upon dozens of batches since then – i think i may actually have the recipe memorized already. haha.

granola makes the perfect gift. i made a whole bunch for christmas last year and packed them in cute mason jars. it’s great because you can easily make a double batch and it keeps well for a while, so the receiver doesn’t have to feel pressured to eat it right away with all of the other holiday sweets. everyone LOVED it and often request it again and again.

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chris and i also eat it all the time for for breakfast all the time. it’s delicious with some plain greek yogurt and sliced bananas. but chris doesn’t like coconut, so i just substitute a bit of extra oats and pecans (1/2 cup of each) whenever i make some for him.

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in fact, yesterday i made a batch for us to have for breakfast this week. i can’t wait! this oatmeal cookie granola is the perfect way to enjoy all of the flavors you love in an oatmeal cookie, but in a slightly healthier form.

first, combine the oats, pecans, flaxseed, coconut, cinnamon, nutmeg, brown sugar and salt in a medium/large bowl.

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browned butter blueberry muffins

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i finally found it!  the absolute best blueberry muffin recipe in the world.  i’ve tried a couple blueberry muffins recipes before – this one and this lemon one.  but they didn’t quite cut it.

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joy the baker came up with this glorious recipe and put it in her first cookbook.  i bought it several months ago but for some strange reason failed to make anything from it.  then one day as i was perusing my cookbook collection,  i came across this recipe.  i just love browned butter, so i figured browned butter blueberry muffins had to be good.

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and they absolutely were.  it’s a tender, buttery muffin studded with juicy blueberries topped with a to-die-for crumb topping.  just amazing.  i implore you to make these next time you have some fresh (or frozen) blueberries.  you’ll be so glad you did!

start by browning the butter in small saucepan.  just melt the butter over medium heat.

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it’ll take a little while but you’ll start to hear it crackling.  watch it carefully because once it starts to brown it can burn really quickly.  you’ll see little brown bits and the liquid will become tan.  you’ll also start to smell the sweet, toasted, caramely scent of browned butter – one of my most favorite smells ever.  once the butter is browned, transfer it to a small bowl.  if you keep it in the pan, it will likely burn from the residual heat.

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pumpkin doughnut muffins

one of troubles of not writing blog posts as i bake, is that i have recipes to share that are very seasonal.  you know most people like pumpkin flavored treats during the fall time, fruit desserts in the spring and summer, and so on.  but i didn’t want to wait until the fall to post these pumpkin doughtnut muffins because they are too good to keep to myself.

plus what is nice about this recipe is that it uses canned pumpkin, which you can find at the grocery store year around.  so no need to wait until the fall to whip up a batch of these pumpkin doughnut muffins.  i love that this recipe elevates a standard pumpkin muffin to new heights with the addition of a vanilla glaze, just like the one used on doughnuts.

they have the perfect amount of spice and pumpkin flavor and i love the crunch and crackling of the glaze.  they are definitely best the day you make them, but i made them the night before i served them and they were just fine.  oh and they aren’t all that difficult to make either – though you do end up using quite a few bowls for just 12-15 muffins.  oh well, it’s a small sacrifice for these bad boys.

start by combining the dry ingredients – flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl.

then in a medium bowl, mix together the pumpkin puree and greek yogurt.

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whole wheat chocolate chip waffles

i actually wasn’t planning on posting this recipe anytime soon.  as you know, i have a lot of other recipes that i need to catch up on.  but these whole wheat chocolate chip waffles were just so good that i couldn’t wait.

chris and i have been on a waffle kick.  i guess this goes in fazes because last time i posted a bunch of waffle recipes, we are on a waffle kick too.  i made these cinnamon chip waffles last weekend and this weekend i made whole wheat chocolate chip waffles.

the recipe is based off the basic waffle recipe i made previously.  but i wanted to make it just a little bit healthier.  so i made a couple easy swaps.  i used white whole wheat flour instead of all purpose and coconut oil instead of vegetable oil. of course everyone knows that whole wheat is better than regular white flour, but did you know about all of the health benefits of coconut oil?  it can help lower cholesterol and blood pressure, it may help with thyroid health, and it can help boost metabolism.  awesome right!  read this article for more information on the wonderfulness that is coconut oil.

oh back to the white whole wheat flour.  this is awesome stuff.  it makes it so much easier to substitute whole wheat flour for all purpose.  white whole white flour is made from white wheat while regular whole wheat flour is made from red wheat.  white whole wheat flour has all of the same health benefits and nutrients found in regular whole wheat flour, but the flavor is a bit milder than regular whole wheat flour and the texture is a bit lighter.  for more information on white whole wheat flour, check out this article.

now for the waffles!

combine the white whole wheat flour,

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cinnamon chip waffles

remember those waffles i made a while ago?  no not the pumpkin ones, but the plain, regular ones?  well that’s actually not fair to call them plain because they were delicious.  but chris and i definitely prefer waffles that we can just pull out of the freezer, toast, and then eat right up.  no need to worry about a plate, fork, sticky syrup, etc.   just a napkin and you’re good to go.

so i decided to adapt the waffle recipe to make it a bit more exciting and tasty.   i love cinnamon chips and i remembered that they were great in scones and brownies so why not put them in waffles.  and you know what?  they were amazing in waffles.  yay, go me!  the bursts of cinnamon flavor was absolutely delicious.  i also added some cinnamon to bump up the cinnamon flavor and upped the sugar just a smidgen since we wouldn’t be eating these waffles with syrup.

this time i wrapped up the waffles individually thinking that it would make it easier on busy mornings to pull out 1 serving.  i wrapped 2 waffles at a time in plastic wrap.

ta da!  a big old stack of waffles ready for the freezer.

but i will say that i’ve made and froze more waffles since making these and i decided not to wrap them.  it just seemed like a waste of plastic wrap since it was easy enough to take out 2 at a time when storing the waffles in a large ziplock.  so i guess just figure out what works best for you and your family – either way you can’t go wrong because these waffles are the bombdigity.

the first step is to combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl – flour, cornstarch, sugar, salt, baking powder, baking soda and cinnamon.

then add the buttermilk, oil, egg, and vanilla.  whisk to combine making sure not to over mix.

time for the cinnamon chips!

chop them up just a little bit so they can be evenly disbursed through the waffles.

fold the cinnamon chip bits into the waffle batter and allow the batter to rest for 30 minutes.

bake the waffles according to your waffle maker’s instructions.  for mine, i need to pour 1 cup of batter on to the waffle iron,

and bake for 5 minutes.

then allow the waffles to cool on a wire rack.  do not cool your waffles on a plate or straight on the baking sheet or else they will get soggy and yucky.

i like to use kitchen shears to cut the waffles up.  it makes the process super quick and easy.

yay!  waffles galore!

oh i’ve also made chocolate chip waffles using this recipe.  just switch out the cinnamon chips for mini chocolate chips (no need to chop them up since they’re already small)  and omit the cinnamon.  delish!  i think they may be chris’ favorite.

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