Pumpkin Granola

I found this recipe online when I was searching for something to do with some leftover pumpkin puree that had been sitting in my fridge.  I played with the recipe I found at Two Peas and Their Pod and switched a couple amounts and ingredients around based on what I had on-hand at the time.  This was some of the best granola I’ve ever had–tasty enough to eat with plain yogurt!

Here’s what I did:


5 C rolled oats

1 tsp pumpkin pie spice

1 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp nutmeg

3/4 tsp salt

3/4 C brown sugar

1/2 C pumpkin puree

1/4 C applesauce

1/4 C maple syrup

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/4 C each raisins, dried cranberries, chopped pecans and pepitas


1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a large bowl, combine oats, spices, salt, pecans and pepitas. Mix well.

2.  In a medium bowl, whisk together brown sugar, pumpkin, applesauce, maple syrup and vanilla.  Pour over oat mixture and stir until combined.  Spread the mixture onto the baking sheet.

3.  Bake for 20 minutes, then remove pan from the oven and stir.  Return to the oven for an additional 15-20 minutes or until granola is golden and crisp.  Remove from the oven and stir in dried fruit.


back on the band wagon

I gave up calorie-counting for Memorial Day weekend.  It really just wasn’t going to be practical to be jumping on-and-off the computer all day with everything going on.  Not to mention all the yummy goodies everywhere!  Cinnamon rolls and mimosas at Heather’s promotion!  Rita’s gelati TWICE!  Birthday cake, outrageous brownies, lemon bars, mojitos, sangria…and that was just FRIDAY.  Raspberry angel food cake with raspberry buttercream icing awaited me in Carmel.

I went into the weekend knowing I’d be faced with temptation at every turn.  I did my best, most of the time, to make good choices yet still enjoy myself and the food.  I am a foodie, after all.

Well, you win some, you lose some.  According to the scale, I didn’t do too much damage, but I didn’t lose any, either.  So, basically, I’ve been at the same weight for a couple weeks now, which is fine, don’t get me wrong.  But I’m supposed to be LOSING two pounds a week…  I’m fine until I think about how much I COULD have lost if I’d just been stricter.  And then I remember how good the cake tasted.

Thankfully, all has returned to (relative) normalcy around here, so I’m back on the calorie-counting band wagon.  Yippee!  After four days off, I realized I actually feel better when I’m counting.  Maybe it’s a control-thing, maybe it’s just my personality, maybe it’s because I’m typically eating healthier food, maybe it’s a combination of all three, but I really do enjoy it.  I know it stresses a lot of people out.  Or they think it’s too complicated or time-consuming.  But I love it.  I just wish I had an iPhone so I could do it when I’m on the go, too…

Between eating more produce and cleaning out my fridge, I’ve come up with some great meals since last night.  Dinner last night was roasted broccoli and cauliflower (leftover from the party), hummus and tomatoes and fruit.  Breakfast this morning was a banana, followed by a post-workout yogurt, mango and granola parfait.  Here’s what I had tonight:

Roasted cauliflower (olive oil, cumin and paprika), a Wasa Fiber cracker spread with a Laughing Cow cheese wedge and four dried figs.  Yum.  I spooned up a mixture of mango and watermelon as well, but I may save that for dessert–I got full!

I really do feel better when I’m eating smaller meals (like 200 calories) every 2-3 hours.  I’m a fan of cottage cheese with pineapple, or an apple and peanut butter or cheese and crackers.

Off to get some more exercise: disassembling Hadrian’s crate, lugging it upstairs and into the car, followed by a walk (for him) because the weather is so nice!