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Sunday, September 6, 2015

Pumpkin Granola

The state of Illinois where I live has named the pumpkin pie the official pie of Illinois. The reason behind this may be the fact that the state may be the leading seller of pumpkins. Yes, that's right Illinois where the  green grass grows, the place that our current president held office and the Land of Lincoln. So when we are talking about nutritional wise food we can not leave out the pumpkin

Pumpkin is a super food that will be coming into harvest very soon here in Illinois.
Nutritional facts about pumpkins includes:
15 calories per 1/2 cup
pumpkin is full of iron, zinc, fiber as well as vitamin c and beta carotene.
Pumpkins are high in substances lutein and zeaxanthin that help prevent cataracts from forming and helps reduce the risk of macular degeneration.
while canned pumpkin may have slightly less fiber than fresh it does have more beta carotene because of the heat of process of canning.
Pumpkin seeds are good source of protein and fiber, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, copper and manganese.

3/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup pumpkin puree (not pie filling)
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup Nutella
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves or nutmeg
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
4 cups old-fashioned oats
1 cup Rice Krispies cereal
1/4 cup sunflower or pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup raisins
1/4 teaspoon salt
Grease the slow cooker with a non stick baking spray or canola or vegetable oil. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together maple syrup, pumpkin puree, vanilla, oil and Nutella.
In a large mixing bowl, stir together oats, rice cereal, seeds, cinnamon, ginger and cloves.
Pour the wet ingredients over the cereal and toss together to coat. 
Place the granola in the slow cooker. Set on high for 2 and 1/2 hrs. Stir every half an hour.
Place the granola on a aluminum foil or parchment paper lined baking sheet until dry.
Store in an air-tight container on the counter or in the fridge. In room temperature the granola will keep for about a week. In the fridge, it will keep longer.

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