As a child, I always loved Easter Sunday. I loved getting to dawn a new, special, often pastel dress with a gigantic bow, I loved the deviled eggs that we always had at our Easter lunch after church, I loved the perfumey aroma of the Easter lilies, and, of course, I loved the Easter baskets overflowing with toys and candy.
The chocolate bunnies, sour jellybeans, and, my personal favorite, Reese’s eggs were frequent basket fillers. No wonder we always had multiple Easter eggs hunts on Easter…my brothers and I were so cracked out on sugar we had to run around our yard and two sets of grandparents’ yards in order to burn all of that off.
As a responsible adult (being a parent makes me an adult now, right?!) with a vastly different palate than my six year-old self, the idea of consuming all of that sugar makes me sick to my stomach.
Instead of the Easter bunny bringing me a basket of waxy, high fructose-loaded candy, I’d prefer he bring me something still satisfying to my sweet tooth: carrot cake granola!
Just like the traditional stuff, this granola is a textural explosion of goodness: crunchy walnuts, tender carrots, rich coconut, and, if you’re feeling a little naughty, a hint of decadence from white chocolate all come together in a sweet treat worthy of any Easter basket.
I. Love. Carrot. Cake.
I’ve recently confessed my longstanding obsession with it to y'all. Over the years, I’ve learned that carrot cake can be enjoyed in so many varieties; from the traditional layered cake to cupcakes to cheesecake (so wrong it’s right) to granola bars and ice cream, I can enjoy carrot cake in so many ways.
But too often, chowing down on all of those yummy delights leave me resembling the fluffy, chubby bunny, minus the hippity hopping about. No one is going to be hopping anywhere after eating a huge slice of carrot cake, except maybe hopping into a pair of sweats and onto the couch.
Want an easy way to feel a little indulgent without the bloating, guilt, fatigue, and sugar coma of most Easter desserts?
My carrot cake granola will do just the trick! Serve atop a smoothie, yogurt, coconut milk, or fruit salad for a crunchy, nutritious addition to your brunch buffet.
This Easter, I’d like to keep things on the lighter side. As a new mom, I’m well aware of the extra cushion I’m still packing, especially around my midsection. It’s a reality I was prepared for and graciously accept it. Those added pounds were a necessity to growing a healthy, full-term boy, and, by golly, God has certainly blessed me with one
While I’m not counting calories or even weighing myself, I am still conscious of what I put into my body, knowing that what I feed myself will go directly to my growing boy. I know my body is burning extra calories since I’m nursing, but I’m not using that as an excuse to shovel Reese’s Eggs and anything covered in cream cheese frosting into my pie-hole.
While I’m accepting of the body I have at the moment, I’m also slowly striding toward turning some of this fluffy flab into something a little more toned and fab.
Cream cheese icing and Reese’s Eggs aren’t going to help me toward that goal. And if you have the goal of toning up before summer kicks into full gear, those treats aren’t going to help you reach your goal, either.
That’s why I love to take the flavors of my favorite indulgences, i.e. carrot cake, and turn them into healthier snacks and treats that will help me stay on track with my nutrition and health goals.
Some of the nutrition all stars here include:
In addition, I like to add another punch of vitamins, minerals, and fiber by adding dried fruit at the end. Dates, dried pineapple, and coconut chips make for a delightful addition at the end.
Last week, I shared my carrot cake overnight oats with y’all as a way to my cake and eat it, too. This week, this granola can keep you equally fueled and nourished.
If you’re like me and planning an Easter brunch this Sunday, I can’t think of a yummier addition to the often-heavy buffet line-up than my carrot cake granola. Serve it as a topping at a smoothie bar, yogurt parfaits, or fruit salad. You could also have it wrapped in pastel baggies as a healthier alterative to the chocolate bunnies for your family and friends to take home with them.
Healthy Happy Texan
I'm a Foodie, Fitness Instructor, and Follower of Christ. Add a passion for teaching others, dark chocolate, bacon, and dogs -- and that's me in a box.
Come on, let's live a little!