Honey Walnut Granola

Most days I don't put much thought into snack-time. My son doesn't really care much for fancy dips or sauces, and he isn't picky, so I pull out some yogurt, a jar of homemade applesauce, or slice up a red bell pepper and call it good. Like my son, my snack-time favorites are usually pretty simple. A handful of ripe cherry tomatoes, a spoonful of peanut butter, or some lightly salted almonds (which the dentist has officially banned me from forever.)

My husband on the other hand is very set in his ways when it comes to snacking and his tastes are nothing like mine (which was only reaffirmed during our recent trip to Arkansas.) His ultimate snack includes something sweet, crunchy, and salty— which would explain why he's huge fan of the trail mix I had been making before I broke another tooth. 

As you can tell, our snacking habits don't exactly line up, which means when we travel I have to pack separate snacks for everyone. It's a bit of a hassle, but it looks like we've finally found a snack we can all agree on. While we were shopping for vacation snacks my husband saw me looking over various healthy(ish) options (because a girl can't live off of yogurt alone) and noticed I had tossed some granola in the cart. He questioned whether one bag was enough for the entire week. Which only left me confused, it takes me weeks to finish off a bag.

Then he said the magic words... words I never thought I would hear from my non-hippy food eating, meat and potatoes loving husband. He said "well I'd like some to, you know." No husband, I did not know because you always make fun of my part-time vegetarian, healthy eating, hippy ways (he calls pretty much everything I eat hippy food.)

I've loved this man for over half my life and he still manages to surprise me sometimes.

So a second bag was added to the already overflowing cart. After he and my son finished off both bags in a matter of days he turned to me and asked me if I would make some more when we got home (because it was kinda silly to spend $10 on two bags of granola.) 

In that, at least, we are in full agreement. 

When we got home I pulled out the last of the honey my aunt and uncle gave me at Christmas and got to work. I managed to learn something new while fiddling around in the kitchen— egg whites are the key to making clumpy granola. The protein helps bind everything together. If you don't eat eggs or are allergic to them, feel free to leave them out. You'll still have tasty, albeit somewhat less clumpy granola, it will be ready in under an hour, and it will be better than anything you'll find in the store.

Honey Walnut Granola

Honey Walnut Granola
makes 8 - 10 servings

Ingredients

½ cup honey
½ cup dark brown sugar, packed
½ cup unsalted butter
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
6 cups old fashioned rolled oats (not quick oats)
2 cups walnuts, coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon ceylon cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
2 large egg whites

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 325˚F. In a saucepan, set over medium heat, combine honey, brown sugar, unsalted butter, and vanilla extract. Cook until the butter has melted, then pour over oats. Add walnuts, cinnamon, and salt.
  • In a separate bowl use a whisk to beat egg whites until foamy, then add add them to the granola mixture. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, then spread mixture in a single thin layer, making sure to press it flat with a spatula. 
  • Bake for 40 minutes, rotating the pan once halfway through. When the granola has finished baking, allow it to cool to room temperature before breaking into chunks.

Notes

Store finished granola in an air-tight container. It will remain fresh for at least two weeks, although ours never stays around that long.

If you want to add to this recipe, keep in mind that nuts and seeds should be added before baking and things like dried fruit or chocolate should be added once the granola is completely cool.

To make this snack easily portable, take a Wide-Mouth Pint Size Canning Jar, fill it half way with granola, and drop a cup of yogurt on top. Greek yogurt containers from Chobani or Oikos won't fit, but most of the smaller yogurt containers will work just fine. You can seal the jar with a Plastic Storage Caps to make things easy or use the two-piece lid and ring that come with the jar. 

Honey Walnut Granola - Mason Jar Snacks

On-the-Go with OXO Tot #Sponsored

Last year I had an opportunity to work with OXO as part of their #FirstBites campaign. It was tons of fun sharing some my son's favorite foods like Spiced Blueberry Applesauce, Vanilla Bean Pear Sauce, and Healthy Mini Popsicles Perfect for Teething Tots! So I'm excited to announce that we'll be working with them again this week as part of the Choose Your Own Adventure with OXO Tot campaign. They've sent me a box of goodies that I'll be sharing with you today, along with a story or two of my experiences of traveling with my own tot in tow. As you already know, we're always on-the-go! 

And because I've got a whole slew of new recipes for little ones to share, check back soon, I'll be sharing one of my favorite snacks to take along when we travel.

OXO Tot On-the-Go Travel Drying Rack with Bottle Brush

 

My First Trip with a Tot: A Tale of Forgotten Items

When my son was 9 months old I packed him in the car, kissed my husband goodbye, and preceded to take him on a 3,000 mile road trip with my mother. My friends were convinced I was absolutely bonkers for spending two weeks in the car with a small child in tow. The good news is that he slept for most of the trip— the car has always been his kryptonite. The bad news is that I was woefully unprepared to be traveling through rural Kansas with a small child. I couldn't pop out to the store for anything I had forgotten, because the closest large store of any kind is nearly 35 miles away and the grocery store is at least a 40 mile round trip.

I remember crossing my fingers in hopes I hadn't forgotten anything, but I'm sure you know how that turned out. I always forget something, usually it's my toothbrush (I'm pretty sure the gas station in Moline stocks them just for me because I buy one every time I come to town.) This time I realized a little too late that I had forgotten the baby bottle brush. It's hard enough to clean dirty bottles at home, but after they've sat in the diaper bag all day they're next to impossible to clean without a bottle brush. I wish I would have had the OXO Tot On-the-Go Travel Drying Rack with Bottle Brush, it would have made my first year of traveling so much easier.

We're long past the days where we need baby bottles in our home, but it's still a nice item to toss in the bag for scrubbing sippy cups and travel mugs, something we never leave home without.

OXO Tot Non-Slip Handy Stroller Hook

 

Just Hanging Around with my Tot

As a new mother I never seemed to have enough hands. I thought things would change as my son got older, but I was only fooling myself. Even though he's almost 4 we can't leave the house without his favorite Minion cup, stuffed animal, a snack or two, and a whole bunch of things to keep him occupied that don't involve pulling out my ipad. I had hoped to get back to the point where all I carry out the door is purse, but we're not quite to that point yet.

Perhaps one day...

Since it's summer we've been spending a lot of time out walking the neighborhood, visiting the park or zoo, and making impromptu trips to the beach for swimming lessons. That means we're taking even more stuff with us than usual. Since I haven't found a way to grow and additional arm or two I thought the OXO Tot Non-Slip Handy Stroller Hook would be the answer to all my problems. The only problem is, it doesn't work well with the new umbrella stroller we picked up last month. It has a tendency to slide down the handle, making my bags drag on the ground. I still think this is pretty handy, especially if you happen to have a stroller without curved handles, but sadly it's not a solution to my problem.

I guess my late-night research into growing additional limbs will continue for now...

OXO Tot On-the-Go Travel Wipes Dispenser

 

The Unpredictable Nature of Tots

I thought I had traveling with my little man down to a science, we've been at it for four years now, but our recent outing to Busch Stadium only showed me otherwise. We'd been there awhile chilling out with my father-in-law for his 60th birthday, the little man was packing away junk food like it was going out of style, and then he choked on a peppermint. That meant the nachos, milk, grapes and every other thing he'd managed to Hoover up in the last thirty minutes came right back up. And of course, it came up all over me because this kid will never puke on his father. Ever.

I quickly discovered that when security searched my bag at the gate they managed to bury my baby wipes at the bottom of my purse. This was not a good time to make that discovery, let me tell you!

It made me wish the goodies for this campaign had come in a week earlier. The
OXO Tot On-the-Go Travel Wipes Dispenser
would have been conveniently attached to the side of my stroller where I could have easy access to it my puke covered state. The one-handed push button access means you can get to your wipes in a hurry— as parents we've all been in at least one situation where this would have been handy.

If your tot is past the point of needing wipes it makes a great storage box for crayons, markers, and a small notepad to help keep your tot occupied. If you're traveling with your tot you can never have too many things on hand to keep them busy!

I know that last story was gross, but that's life with a small child. They're just unpredictable that way. Don't forget to check back Friday for an easy on-the-go recipe that is sure to keep your own tot happy.
 

Disclosure

 

OXO sent me their OXO Tot On-the-Go Travel Wipes Dispenser, Handy Stroller Hook, Travel Drying Rack with Bottle Brush, and 2-in-1 Go Potty for Travel as part of this campaign. As always all opinions are my own.

This post contains my Amazon affiliate links. I try to keep advertising unobtrusive and to a minimum in order to provide you with the best experience possible. Purchases made through these links provide me with a small income and ensure I can continue providing you with quality content.