On World Food Day, I was honored to be invited to work alongside Elaine Cheng, founder of Food Connections, at Science World for a food waste engagement event with Metro Vancouver – Love Food Hate Waste. She’s a passionate food waste advocate who spearheaded Vancouver’s very first Feeding the 5000, a city-wide campaign that served 5000 free lunches to the public, all made from rescued food.
As a proud representative of her team at Food Connections, I helped her prepare a few zero waste goodies for sampling at the event. Inspiring people to whip up recipes and get creative in the kitchen with ingredients that would normally be thrown out.
As Halloween is creeping around the corner, pumpkin seed granola seemed like the perfect seasonal recipe to create for this event.
Raw pumpkin seeds have a very tough exterior shell that needs to be grinded down into soft flakes before mixing it into the granola. But once it’s mixed in with the raw oats and honey, it adds an extra layer of texture and nuttiness to the granola.
They’re perfect on breakfast bowls, smoothie bowls, fruit and yogurt bowls. Or I just like to eat them by the handful. However you like to take them, they’re simple, delicious, and waste free! My three favorite combinations.
- 4 cups old-fashioned rolled oats (optional: gluten free oats)
- 1 cup whole pumpkin seeds, finely grinded
- 1 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt (if you're using standard table salt, scale back to ¾ teaspoon)
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ cup melted coconut oil or olive oil
- ½ cup honey
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ⅔ cup dried raisins or any other dried fruit
- Clean the seeds by putting them into a bowl of water, using hands to break pumpkin flesh away from seeds. Seeds will float to the top, nicely separating from the pumpkin flesh.
- Drain seeds in
colanderand dry lightly with a tea towel.
- Spread seeds on a baking sheet and lightly drizzle with oil (about ¾ tsp). Massage seeds into oil and
addsalt. Spread out as thinly as possible with minimal overlapping.
- Roast seeds at 325F for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and stir. Then roast another 8-10 minutes. During the last 5 minutes, remove a few seeds and crack open to make sure the inside seed is not burning. Shell is ready to eat when crispy and easy to crack open. The inside seed should be golden yellow, not brown.
- Remove from oven and let cool for 5-10 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Mix all dry ingredients, except dried raisins/any dried fruits, in a large mixing bowl and stir to blend.
- Pour oil,
honeyand vanilla into blended mixture until every oat and nut is lightly coated. Pour granola onto bakingpan and spread layer evenly.
- Bake until golden, around 20-25 minutes, stirring halfway.
- Allow granola to cool before breaking into pieces and stir in dried raisins/any dried fruit.
- Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 weeks or in a sealed freezer bag for up to 3 months.