Sun-Maid recommended that I “start the day with a parfait…raisins, fresh fruit, light, easy-to-make orange-raisin cream cheese and crunchy granola layered in your favorite stemmed glasses. It’s a healthful and easy-to-make breakfast!” They sent me their Morning Parfait recipe along with raisins to make it. It’s definitely an elegant and delicious way to start the day.
I made a few changes to the recipe to lighten it up even further. I reduced the amount of cream cheese and added a container of Greek Yogurt. I used agave syrup instead of sugar and I made my own low fat granola using Earth Balance® Organic Coconut Spread.
Earth Balance sent me coupons to try their new Coconut Spread made with extra virgin coconut oil. It’s an affordable alternative to coconut oil and it’s vegan, lactose-free and organic. Since I’ve seen lots of blog posts about baking with coconut oil, I was happy to give it a try.
I wasn’t disappointed. My son said this was his favorite granola recipe yet and I agree. The coconut spread with the agave syrup gave it a light, fresh taste. We love dried cherries and almonds, so for us this is the perfect granola. I hope you’ll give it a try.
1/2 cup Sun-Maid Natural Raisins
4 tablespoons orange juice divided
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 tablespoons agave syrup
1 8 oz light or fat free cream cheese, softened
1 6 oz container low fat Greek yogurt
2 cups chopped fresh berries
1/2 cup low-fat granola
4 cups old fashioned oats
1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup sliced almonds
1/2 cup dried cherries, halved
1/2 cup unsweetened desiccated coconut fine
1/4 cup flax seed meal (optional)
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt
1/3 cup Earth Balance® Organic Coconut Spread*
1/4 cup agave syrup*
1 tablespoon vanilla
In microwave-safe bowl, combine raisins, 1 tablespoon orange juice and vanilla.
Cover and microwave on high for 45 seconds; let stand one minute to plump raisins. Remove a handful of raisins for garnish. Add agave syrup and remaining 3 tablespoons of orange juice to raisins in bowl.
In medium bowl, whisk cream cheese until smooth, mix in Greek yogurt. Mix in raisin mixture and blend well.
Layer in four tall wine or parfait glasses in the following order: raisin cream cheese/yogurt mixture, fruit, granola; repeat layers of cream cheese mixture and fruit.
Garnish with a dollop of cream cheese mixture and sprinkle with raisins.
In a large bowl mix oats, brown sugar, almonds, cherries, coconut, flax seed meal, cinnamon, and salt.
In a microwave safe bowl heat coconut spread until melted. Whisk in agave and vanilla extract. Pour this mixture over the oat mixture and mix thoroughly until everything is completely coated.
Spread evenly on a parchment or silpat covered cookie sheet. Bake at 300º for about 20 - 25 minutes until slightly golden brown. Don’t stir during baking. Cool completely and break into pieces. Store in an air tight container.
*You can substitute canola oil and honey.
adapted from Sun-Maid
Other granola recipes you might like:
Tropical Granola, Barbara Bakes
Easy Vanilla Granola, You Know You Ought To
Almond Raisin Granola, Barbara Bakes
Peanut Butter Granola Balls, Two Peas and Their Pod
Blueberry Almond Granola Bars, Mountain Mama Cooks