Category Archives: granola

How About Some Granola Without any Grains?

Let me hear that, get me near that
Crunchy Granola Suite
Drop your shrink and stop your drinkin’
Crunchy granola’s neat ( Neil Diamond )

I agree with Neil about crunchy granola being neat. It has been a part of my diet for more years than I care to remember.

I know ‘Granola Without Grains’ sounds like something left over from April Fool’s Day. But it isn’t.  That’s why I was so surprised to discover Paleo Granola by CJK Foods of Chicago, IL.

“Granola,” according to Wikipedia “is a breakfast food and snack food, popular in the Americas, consisting of rolled oats, nuts, honey, and sometimes puffed rice, that is usually baked until crisp. During the baking process the mixture is stirred to maintain a loose, breakfast cereal-type consistency. Dried fruits, such as raisins and dates, are sometimes added.”

So, clearly, grains are an integral part of granola.


I must confess almost total ignorance of the Paleo diet. I just checked the web and the first thing I learned is that they don’t eat grains. They do eat grass-produced meats, fish/seafood, fresh fruits and veggies, eggs, nuts and seeds and healthful oils, like coconut oil. Lots of good eating there. So, the fact that you don’t eat grains explains why the Paleo Granola has no grains in it.

Before going further, I need to tell you that I bought it from my local grocer who had a girl passing out samples. I tried one and was blown away by the taste. A party in my mouth! I went right back and picked up a package. I am now on my third one.

Okay, so what is in Paleo Granola?

The ingredients are Organic almonds, organic sunflower seeds, almond flour, organic cashews, organic walnuts, maple syrup, organic flax seeds, organic coconut oil, organic raisins, vanilla, organic coconut flakes, spices and salt.

Here is the nutrition breakdown:
Serving size 2 ounces, 57 grams
Calories 295
Total fat 23 grams
Saturated fat 8 grams
No Trans fat
Sodium 16 mg
Dietary fiber 4 grams
Sugar 11 grams
Protein 7 grams

A quick comparison with a regular granola, puts Paleo slightly higher on calories, a lot higher on total fat, due to the nuts and coconut, way down on sodium and higher on fiber and protein. Not a bad tradeoff, I think.

Although I am a big granola fan and have a bowl almost every day. I have found that I like the taste of this Paleo mixture so much that I use it as a snack and sometimes take chunks of it with me for energy breaks when I ride the bike.

While I usually refrain from writing up local products that are not available to readers of an international blog, I did this one because I thought you might enjoy being exposed to the concept of granola sans grains. Also, resourceful readers might even try to make it on their own with a little experimentation. You have all the ingredients.

If anyone does try to make their own, I hope you will share your experience with the blog.

For Neil Diamond fans, here is the best audio version I could find on You Tube:


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Filed under breakfast, eating, energy, energy bars, Exercise, fresh fruit, granola, health, healthy fats, healthy living, meat, nutrition, nuts, Paleo Diet, protein, salt, saturated fat, snack foods, Snacking, Weight

Should I Eat Less Chocolate? Costco Love Crunch

Regular readers know that I ride my bike an average of 20 miles a day which covers a multitude of sins at the table. A 20 mile bike ride burns over 1000 calories a day, or about 50 percent more than the 2000 I need to maintain my 150 pound body weight.

Because of that 1000 calorie ‘buffer’ until recently I had been enjoying a Hershey’s with Almonds bar most evenings.

Here is the nutrition breakdown for that Hershey’s with Almonds bar:
Calories 210
Total Fat 14 grams
Saturated Fat 6 grams
Cholesterol 10 mg
Sodium 25 mg
Carbs 21 grams
Sugar 19 grams
Fiber 2 grams
Protein 4 grams

As you can see, this isn’t horrible as far as nutrition is concerned, particularly in view of the 1000 calorie buffer. But, six grams of saturated fat isn’t great and the 19 grams of sugar amounts to almost 5 teaspoons full (4.2 grams/tsp).
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Filed under arterial plaque, arteries, biking, calories, cardio exercise, cholesterol, Exercise, fat, granola, heart, Weight

Is There a Good Chocolate Granola? Yes, Love Crunch

I have recently been in the market for a new granola. For years I used the Kashi GoLean Crunch, but when I learned that Kashi used GMO ingredients, I stopped using Kashi products. I make a parfait every day with a granola product and strawberries yogurt, soy milk , etc. You can read about my High Fiber Parfait.

Dark chocolate 0066
My search included Costco, of course, as I have had such success there on the entire spectrum of foods. Sure enough I found “Love Crunch” – Premium Organic Granola. An interesting aspect is that it is “Made with Organic Cocoa, Flax and Coconut.” The package also says, “Dark Chocolate & Red Berries.” It also states on the package back “Non-GMO Verified,” obviously a big selling point for me.

I have eaten granola on and off over the years since the 1960s, but this was the first time I had encountered chocolate. While I love chocolate per se, I don’t often like chocolate-flavored things, like ice cream. They just taste like watered down chocolate to me. Totally not satisfying. So, I had some misgivings about trying this.

I made up a batch with soy milk and strawberries and was amazed at how good the chocolate taste came out. I actually felt like I was eating real chocolate, not something with chocolate flavoring. Very impressive.

Later that evening I was drawn back to the package and weighed out another serving and simply snacked on it while reading. Excellent! A wonderful snack discovery! I could snack on this very healthy CHOCOLATE FLAVORED whole grain food. All good. Talk about win-win!

Here is the nutritional breakdown for a single 30 gram serving which comes to about 1/4 of a cup.

Calories 140
Total Fat 6 grams
Saturated Fat 1 gram
No Cholesterol
Sodium 55 mg
Carbohydrates 20 grams
Fiber 2 grams
Sugar 6 grams
Protein 2 grams

I recommend this for a lovely parfait dessert, plain for breakfast or as a healthy snack finger food.

For a health boost, I include a tablespoon of chia seeds and a tablespoon of hemp seeds. I just like to push the nutritive value up.

You can read about Are Chia Seeds Good For You? or How Good is Hemp Seed?

March 2, 2013 update. I have eliminated my nightly Hershey’s with almonds snack and substituted a bowl of Love Crunch. I get the same chocolate taste with none of the saturated fats and less calories. Keep in mind this kind of substitution can break some unhealthy eating habits.

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Filed under calories, chia seeds, granola, healthy eating, healthy living, hemp seeds, portion control, portion size, protein, sodium, Weight