Blueberry Granola & Pumpkin Spice Apple Smoothie

I'll admit I fully get on the pumpkin-spice everything train this time of year, and when The Main Dish introduced their pumpkin line-up I knew their smoothie would be something I'd be wanting on the regular, so I had to try making one myself - success!

Since not quite everyone is into pumpkin though, I've also included a granola recipe that I tried out this past weekend at The Light Cellar, and I'm pretty sure it's my new favourite for granola. It requires only 5 minutes of cook time, versus the hour I was roasting previous granola recipes in the oven for, which also means it stays a whole lot chewier. This one's packed with loads of good fats, so a little goes a long way!

Pumpkin Spice Apple Smoothie

Serves 1

1/2 apple, core removed
1/2 cup pure pumpkin puree
1 cup milk - dairy/unsweetened coconut/unsweetened almond
1/2 scoop vanilla protein powder
1/2 - 1 Tbsp almond butter
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice, or 3/4 tsp cinnamon + pinch nutmeg + pinch allspice + pinch cloves

Place all ingredients in a blender, blend on high until smooth, and enjoy!

Tip: I also made this recipe into more of a pudding, by using only 1/4 cup milk. Top with a little scoop of plain Greek yogurt, a spoonful of the granola below, and you've got a super filling breakfast/snack!

Blueberry Granola

Makes 4 1/2 cups

1 cup oats
1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
1/2 cup hemp seeds
1/2 cup sunflower or pumpkin seeds
3 Tbsp chia seeds
1 Tbsp cinnamon powder
1 tsp vanilla powder (or 1 Tbsp vanilla extract)
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup dried berries - one or a mix of: blueberries, goji, raisins, cherries
3 Tbsp coconut oil
2-3 Tbsp honey

Mix all ingredients aside from the last three ingredients in a bowl. Heat a cast iron pan [I used a regular frying pan, it works, too!] to medium-high heat on the stove top and lightly dry toast the granola stirring constantly for 4-6 minutes. Return the toasted granola to the bowl and mix in the coconut oil, honey, and dried berries.

For the dried fruit, I did a half and half mixture of freeze dried blueberries and dried sour cherries (both available at The Light Cellar) to get a punch of both sweet and sour.

Tip: Don't melt the coconut oil before mixing in - the dry mixture will be warm enough from the light toasting to melt it as you mix it in. Letting it melt as you mix gives a better even coating.