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My hope is to inspire you to be fearless in the kitchen, to try new things, to take the time to make things the homemade way and most importantly, to have fun doing it!

Fruit, Yogurt & Granola Parfaits


Okay people, I’m super excited.  I’m doing a cookbook giveaway tomorrow and I am positively thrilled about it.  You see, I get an obnoxious amount of inquiries regarding potential product reviews.  Mostly, companies seem to be seeking free advertising via my blog as an outlet but often, the product is the sort of thing I just don’t use in my kitchen – baking mixes, unitasker gadgets, etc.  Since I try to keep the focus on food, I rarely accept these offers.  When I opened this particular email, however, I nearly jumped out of my chair with excitement.  The cookbook?  The America’s Test Kitchen Healthy Family Cookbook.  You know – the same people responsible for Cook’s Illustrated, my favorite cooking magazine, and Baking Illustrated, my favorite baking cookbook?  Yeah, I was pumped.  It took me about five seconds to agree to this review.  I’ll discuss the book itself in greater detail tomorrow but for today, I am sharing the first recipe I tried from the book: these fruit, yogurt and granola parfaits.


I’m the first to admit, I don’t do the best job with breakfast time.  I have to get up so early and rush out the door so quickly that anything requiring much more effort than a bowl of cereal is too involved for me on a weekday.  However, I knew that if the components for these parfaits were already prepared, the actual assembly was absolutely something I could handle in the morning.  Granola is one of those foods that is often perceived as healthy when in actuality many versions are not exactly nutritious.  This version is definitely good for you, and packed full of omega-3 fatty acids, commonly known as healthy fats.  The use of low-fat Greek yogurt in the recipe provides additional nutritional benefit with more protein than regular yogurt, and is sweetened with honey rather than sugar.  The combination of fresh fruit, thick creamy slightly sweet yogurt and nutty granola was a wonderful breakfast and a welcome change in my routine.  This breakfast filled me up without weighing me down.  Personally the only change I will make in the future will be to omit the sesame seeds from the granola recipe, as I felt they added a slightly odd savory note that just seemed off to me.  Ben, however, loved it as is and ate the majority of the granola before it could be used in more parfaits :)

Stay tuned tomorrow for my review of the cookbook, another recipe from the book, and your chance to win a copy autographed by Christopher Kimball, the publisher and editor of Cook’s Illustrated, etc.

Fruit, Yogurt and Granola Parfaits
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Yield: 4 servings
Ingredients:
3 cups 2% Greek yogurt*
¼ cup honey
4 cups raspberries, blueberries, black-berries, and/or sliced strawberries (about 20 ounces)
1½ cups Omega-3 Granola (see full recipe below)

*Note – You can substitute lower-fat Greek yogurt here if desired; however, the parfaits will taste less rich.  Serve the parfaits within 15 minutes after assembling or the granola will begin to turn soggy.

Directions:
Whisk the yogurt and honey together -thoroughly. Using four 16‑ounce glasses, spoon 1/4 cup of the yogurt-honey mixture into each glass, then top with 1/3 cup of the berries, followed by 2 tablespoons of the granola. Repeat the layering process two more times with the remaining yogurt, berries, and granola. Serve.

Per Serving: Cal 410; Fat 12g; Sat Fat 3.5g; Chol 10mg; Carb 63g; Protein 19g; Fiber 7g; Sodium 95mg

Variations:
Raspberry and Nectarine yogurt Parfaits with Ginger
Add 1 teaspoon ground ginger to the yogurt with the honey. Substitute 2 cups raspberries and 2 peeled and chopped nectarines for the mixed berries.

Winter yogurt Parfaits with Dates, Bananas, and Oranges
Microwave 1 cup chopped dried dates with 1 cup water on high for 30 seconds; drain and let cool. Add 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon and 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg to the yogurt with the honey. Substitute the softened dates, 3 thinly sliced bananas, and 2 segmented and chopped oranges for the mixed berries.

Omega-3 Granola
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Yield: about 6 cups
Ingredients: 
1/3 cup slivered almonds
1/3 cup walnuts, chopped coarse
3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats*
3 tablespoons canola oil
¼ cup sunflower seeds
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
½ cup honey
2 tablespoons ground flaxseeds
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup raisins

*Note – Do not substitute quick-cooking or instant rolled oats in this recipe, or the granola will taste sandy rather than crunchy.

Directions:
Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 325 degrees. Toast the almonds and walnuts in a 12‑inch skillet over medium heat, stirring often, until fragrant and beginning to darken, about 3 minutes. Stir in the oats and oil and continue to toast until the oats begin to turn golden, about 2 minutes. Stir in the sunflower seeds and sesame seeds and continue to toast until the mixture turns golden, about 2 minutes.

Off the heat, stir in the honey, flaxseeds, and salt until well coated. Spread the granola evenly over a large rimmed baking sheet. Bake, stirring every few minutes, until the granola is light golden brown, about 15 minutes.

Stir in the raisins. With a spatula, push the granola onto one half of the baking sheet and press gently into a 1/2‑inch-thick slab. Let the granola cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes. Loosen the dried granola with a spatula, break into small clusters, and serve.  The granola can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 1 week.

Per 1/2‑Cup Serving: Cal 230; Fat 11g; Sat Fat 1g; Chol 0mg; Carb 32g; Protein 5g; Fiber 4g; Sodium 55mg

Variations
Omega-3 Granola with Tropical Fruit
Substitute 1 cup chopped dried tropical fruit (such as pineapple, papaya, and/or mango) and 1/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut for the raisins.

Omega-3 Granola with Cranberries and Ginger
Substitute 3/4 cup dried cranberries and 1/4 cup finely chopped crystallized ginger for the raisins.

Omega-3 Granola with Peanut Butter
Substitute 2/3 cup peanuts, chopped coarse, for the almonds and walnuts. Reduce the amount of oil to 2 tablespoons and stir 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter into the oat mixture with the honey and flaxseed.

Source: The America’s Test Kitchen Healthy Family Cookbook

  • Anne Marie

    That looks so much more appealing than the bowl of cereal I just crammed down my throat. Actually, yogurt, fruit and granola is what I eat for lunch every day. I never, ever would have considered making the granola myself. I’m definitely going to try it.
    Can’t wait for tomorrow’s post!

  • http://sewmanybooks.blogspot.com Gwen Bland

    Healthy cooking aye? I am be very interested to see how ATK defines healthy-everyone seems to have a different take on that subject.

  • http://keepitsweet.wordpress.com Lauren at KeepItSweet

    That granola does look healthy but delicious! I love pretty parfaits like this, they make eating more fun.

  • http://thefrugalgirl.com Kristen@TheFrugalGirl

    I’m giving away an ATK cookbook today too, and I felt JUST the same way when they contacted me. lol I’m such a starstruck fan.

  • http://apinchofthisandadashofthat.blogspot.com CaSaundra

    Fruit, yogurt and granola parfaits are my go-to dessert when I am crunched for time. I really like McDonald’s too if I’m out and about and I need a healthy snack!

  • http://christines-cuisine.blogspot.com Christine

    I have the other two ATK Family cookbooks – and they are two of my favorites. The ATK healthy one has been on my list to buy – so I don’t win your giveaway – I’ll definitely be picking one up for myself :)

  • Ni

    I’m definitely going to make that granola tonight. Thanks for the recipe. It looks yummy!

  • Maggi

    Whoo hoo!

    Well, I can’t wait until tomorrow! ;) I have been wanting to purchase this cookbook once we got some more *cough* funding *cough* in the ‘ol checking account. Their analysis as well as the recipes themselves are always spot on.

  • http://www.dennisbullock.net Dennis Bullock

    This looks so amazing!

  • http://cookingwithmichele.com Cooking with Michele

    I TOTALLY agree with you about the requests to review products that most cooks would never use – and I also love the America’s Test Kitchen cookbooks. In fact, I give them as wedding gifts! Funny that I should see this post this morning – I’m busy cutting fruit to help 240 kids at a local elementary school make fruit and yogurt parfaits today as part of their annual health fair!

  • http://nicandkier.blogspot.com Kierstan @ Life {and running} in Iowa

    That granola looks pretty amazing! It is hard to find granola recipes with not too much oil/butter that still taste good/get crispy.

  • HB

    THis looks like a cookbook I would love! Thanks for sharing on it! It does look like a super quick delish bkfst too!

  • http://eatgood4life.blogspot.com/ Eat Good 4 Life

    This is right up my alley, my kind of breakfast. Love Greek yogurt. As for the book, will check it out if you say it is that good :-)

  • http://fallonscucina.blogspot.com/ Fallon

    The granola recipe sounds fabulous, not too much oil or fat!

    Looking forward to the giveaway. That is so exciting!

  • Liz N

    I am OBSESSED with America’s Test Kitchen cookbooks. I can’t wait to see you make more recipes from their new healthy cookbook.

  • http://www.tiptopshape2.blogspot.com Liz @ Tip Top Shape

    I love parfaits. They’re a great way to make breakfast feel a bit fancier with minimal effort :D

  • http://soulfulcollegegirl.blogspot.com Sara

    I love this cookbook and pretty much everything done by ATK. This parfait looks delicious, and the variations look great, too.

  • Jackie

    Annie, I have tried two recipes from this cookbook and they have both turned out great…The everyday mac and cheese and the chocolate chip cookies. I look forward to your post tomorrow!

  • http://www.upnorthpreppy.blogspot.com AEOT

    I am SO excited about the giveaway. I was just looking at my CI last night and was thinking about ordering that book, and it would be SO much more exciting to win one!!! I’m going to try the limon pasta in the newest edition. Have you tried it yet??

  • TheresaSea

    I’m crossing my fingers that I have good luck tomorrow for your giveaway! These sound DELISH!

  • http://medejos.blogspot.com/ Medeja

    It’s a great idea :) I love such desserts, but I never make them at home.. can’t even explain why :/

  • Brenna

    I can’t wait to hear more about this cookbook, Annie!! I didn’t even know ATK and Cooks Illustrated existed until I started reading your blog… I started noticing that you often adapted their recipes and now I own FIVE of their cookbooks!! I’m totally hooked! I can’t wait to hear your review and I’m looking forward to some delicious and healthy recipes!! :)

  • bergamot

    This is a lovely parfait and great for breakfast or to even satisfy my daughter’s 4pm hunger cravings.

  • http://www.melissascuisine.blogspot.com Melissa

    This looks delicious! I love granola and I know I’d love this!

  • http://www.healthyeatingforordinarypeople.com Rivki Locker

    I am a big fan of plain yogurt. It’s healthy and so delicious. I drizzle it with honey and eat it like ice cream. This looks wonderful. Great photos.

  • Kristin

    I have Greek yogurt w/ honey & almonds (fruit if we’ve got the right kind) 6/7 mornings, so this was our snow day baking. We used dried cherries instead of raisins, & even my picky kids loved it! Oh, and I forgot the canola oil because I didn’t do my usual mise en place…it was delicious, and I’m wondering what difference it made.

  • Hilary

    I love love love to make ‘taco soup’ in teh crockpot. It’s loaded up with lots of veggies and beans and means there’s loads of leftovers for later.
    thx!

  • http://theblissfulbaker.wordpress.com Justeen @ Blissful Baking

    Your parfaits look beautiful! This is one of my favorite breakfast foods – sometimes I even have it for dessert! I’d love to try all of those tasty variations :)

  • http://wgfoodie.wordpress.com wgfoodie

    Ah – my go-to breakfast each morning :) Great post!

  • Claire

    I’ve started making my own Greek yogurt from scratch, so I look forward to trying this! Thank you!

  • http://chezmanu-italianhomecooking.blogspot.com/ Manu @ Chez Manu – Italian Home Cooking

    These look soooo yummy! Will try them for sure! Thanks!!!

  • http://butterybooks.com Lisa@ButteryBooks

    These look pretty enough to serve as dessert!

  • http://www.angelasimages.com Angela

    I can’t wait to make this for my husband! He will LOVE it! Thanks for sharing!

  • Adam

    I made this last night. I haven’t made granola before. It was easy and very good. Thanks for posting it.

  • http://www.asweetpeachef.com lacey – a sweet pea chef

    I’ve always wanted to make homemade granola, but never tried for some reason. This looks delish — thanks for the recipe!

  • Jennifer K

    My fiancé made this for me for my long weekend visit. It was delish!

  • http://www.recessfromwork.blogspot.com stephanie

    this looks delicious. thanks for sharing!

  • http://www.recessfromwork.blogspot.com stephanie

    this looks delicious. thanks for sharing!

  • http://twitter.com/LHayes67 Lara (NOT LAURA)

    I do a Greek yogurt parfait breakfast using plain fat-free yogurt, a handful of home-frozen unsweetened blueberries from a freezer bag, a teaspoon of honey and two teaspoons of Grape Nuts (nuggets, not flakes) for crunch. It is WONDERFUL, loaded with protein and low in sugar. I don’t get hungry again for a good five hours.

  • http://www.facebook.com/mariam.metwally.9 Mariam Metwally

    Yum! I often make my own granola, in fact for breakfast this morning I had peaches with greek yogurt, a drizzle of honey, sprinkle of cinnamon and the last of my granola, i’ll be making up another batch today!
    Just a tip, I took inspiration from smittenkitchen using egg whites mixed with a little water for the liquid component to stir into the dry, even healthier, no oil!