“Nutella” Granola {vegan + gluten-free}

"Nutella" Granola #vegan #glutenfree via arismenu.comOnce upon a time, I discovered the peanut butter & Nutella sandwich. Then, I discovered the Nutella + spoon combination. And sometimes the spoon never even came to join the party. Shameless.

"Nutella" Granola #vegan #glutenfree via arismenu.com

I can’t even have Nutella in the house these days. It’s just too tempting. Occasionally, I’ll buy it for a recipe (and then eat my oatmeal out of the empty jar and feel like I’ve died and gone to heaven), but I think it’s about time that I get to eat chocolate hazelnutty goodness for breakfast every single day. Does that not just sound like perfection?

"Nutella" Granola #vegan #glutenfree via arismenu.com

The best part? You don’t even have to buy Nutella for this recipe, but the taste is uncanny. I took one bite after it finished cooking and quickly exclaimed “It tastes like NUTELLA!!!” Just simple granola loaded with hazelnuts with some cocoa powder added to the mix. It is not overpoweringly sweet, and it doesn’t taste like dessert. I think the sweetness is perfect, but if you want a sweeter granola, you can absolutely add some extra brown sugar, or honey, or agave.

"Nutella" Granola #vegan #glutenfree via arismenu.com

I also discovered the secret to the biggest, fattest granola clusters–check those monsters out!! I’m always looking for the big, chunky clusters, and this time I got it right. I did not stir this granola once while it cooked. I just let it do it’s thing, flipped it around half way through, and ya know what? Everything cooked evenly, nothing burned, and I had granola clusters the size of my hand! What??? Now the problem is not eating those clusters every time I step into the pantry. It’s kind of a problem…

“Nutella” Granola

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 1 hour, 45 minutes

Yield: Approx 10 cups

Serving Size: 1/2 cup

“Nutella” Granola

Simple and easy chocolate hazelnut granola tastes remarkably like Nutella! The big clusters and bold flavors are totally addicting and will have you constantly reaching back for more.

Ingredients

  • 5 cups rolled oats (use gluten-free if that’s important to you)
  • 2 cups hazelnuts, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup slivered almonds
  • heavy pinch sea salt
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup honey or agave
  • 2/3 cup cocoa powder (I used Hershey's special dark)
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 300. In a very large bowl, mix together the oats, nuts and salt.
  2. In a small saucepan, warm the applesauce, brown sugar, honey/agave, cocoa powder and coconut oil until well combined, whisking constantly. Add the applesauce mixture into the dry ingredients and toss to combine. Evenly divide granola in an even layer between two large baking sheets.
  3. Bake until browned and crispy, about 50 minutes-1 hour, turning half way through.
  4. Cool completely, then store in an airtight container at room temperature. The granola will stay fresh for at least one month. I've never made a batch last any longer than that, but it's still great a month in and probably for longer.

Notes

If you'd like, you may gently stir the granola every 20 minutes while cooking. This will lead to less clusters and a finer granola. I prefer to be able to break the clusters up myself afterwards, but if you like a finer granola, then stirring will help.

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White Chocolate Nutella Crunch Cups

Remember these? And these? Well, as part of my Chances for Children fundraising, I am selling homemade candy cups. They’re actually doing pretty well, and people seem to be loving them! I’ll gradually be putting up all of the recipes on here, but if you’re anxious in the meantime, you could purchase some for your very own ;)

These cups are silky and chocolatey with the perfect crunch in the center.

I don’t know about you, but as soon as I hear the word “Nutella” I am pretty much shoving the food in my mouth before you can get the rest of the title out. Lord help me if someone ever offers me something gross like Nutella Sock Lint. That could be bad.

Do you know there are people out there that have actually never experienced this chocolate hazelnut amazingness? For you people, I am sad, and I also I want to feed you Nutella with a spoon. Is that weird?

Wait, do you mean to tell me you don’t like to be fed new foods by strangers on the internet whom you’ve never met in person? That just sounds silly. I think it’s time for an intervention. Or a Nutellavention. Okay, that wasn’t funny at all. I’m really sorry. Let’s look at more pictures of delicious candy cups, because clearly that is my strength, and not clever wit.

 

White Chocolate Nutella Crunch Cups

yield 24-30 cups

  • 2 10 oz bags all natural white chocolate chips
  • 1 scant tbsp coconut oil
  • approx 1/2 cup Nutella (or other chocolate hazelnut butter)
  • approx 1/2 cup crisp brown rice cereal

Directions:

  1. Line 24 mini muffin tins with paper liners.
  2. In a medium bowl, melt white chocolate and coconut oil in the microwave in 20 second intervals, stirring after each, until melted.
  3. Spoon enough chocolate to cover the bottom of each baking cup. Add 1-2 tsp Nutella, followed by 1 tsp brown rice cereal. Top filling with white chocolate until Nutella is completely covered and top is smooth.
  4. Freeze to set. Keep in freezer or fridge.

**It’s too hot here in Phoenix to send these through the mail, but if you’re local, and you would like to contribute, or you just really like chocolate cups, I’m selling them for $1 a piece. And, really, how often do you get to use dessert as a tax write off? ;)

Nutella Cheesecake Brownie Bars

Did you know there are actually people out there who have not tried NUTELLA?!?! That is a shame people. A big, huge, fat shame. Let’s change that by mixing it with cream cheese, sugar, and brownies. Then proceeding to eat the remaining Nutella straight from the jar. Sound like a good plan?

These cheesecake brownie bars are based very closely off my Peanut Butter Cheesecake Brownie Bars, but super chocolatey, and the hazelnut flavor in the Nutella is especially delicious. I gave most of them away (Happy belated birthday KT!!), but the ones in my house didn’t last long ;)

Nutella Cheesecake Brownies Bars

yield approx 30

For the brownie layer:

  • 1 box No Pudge brownie mix or TJ’s Reduced Guilt brownie mix
  • 1 6oz container Yoplait Light fat free red velvet yogurt

For the cheesecake layer:

  • 8oz fat free cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup fat free plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 box fat free, sugar free chocolate pudding mix
  • 1/3 cup raw cane sugar
  • 1/3 cup Splenda
  • 1/2 cup Nutella
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 9×13 baking pan well with nonstick spray. Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine brownie mix and yogurt. Spread in a thin layer to coat the bottom of your baking pan.
  3. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese, Greek yogurt, pudding mix, sugar, Splenda, and Nutella. Add almond milk, and extracts. Beat until smooth and creamy.
  4. Spread cheesecake mixture evenly over brownie mixture.
  5. Bake for 80-90 minutes until cheesecake layer is set in the center. Yes, that is quite a long time. You may want to pour yourself a glass of wine and catch up on bad reality tv.
  6. Cool on wire rack for 30 minutes, then transfer to refrigerator to cool completely.

Fro Yo Cake with Nutella Cookie Crust

Remember this birthday cake gem that Steve got me from Yogurtology?

That cake was perfection. More delicious than ice cream cake, but fro yo, so that makes it healthy, right? Riiiiiight.

What’s even better than a perfectly prepared oatmeal cookie fro yo cake made with love by a Yogurtology employee? One made with more love by ME!

With a butter cookie crust, layers of Nutella and TJ’s Cookie Butter, and topped with Yogurtology’s pretty much famous oatmeal cookie fro yo, this may not be the healthiest cake I’ve ever made, but when you compare to a typical ice cream cake, it definitely can at least hold up to a healthier title, and let me tell you, I would choose this over a regular ice cream cake any day of the week!

Fun fact, ice cream has always been my favorite dessert. I *almost* never eat it now, because I love fro yo so much and never really want to spend the extra calories, but I am of the opinion that if it doesn’t at least include ice cream, it’s not really a dessert. Plain cookie? That’s a snack ;) Cookie a la mode? Mmmmm….dessert! Fro yo with cookie, Nutella and cookie butter? 3x a day for the rest of my life? Okay….If you insist….

Can we also talk about how this cake takes all of like 20 minutes to make? So easy, and ridiculously hard to mess up! Trust me, I can usually mess up anything ;)

Fro Yo Cake with Nutella Cookie Crust

yield approx 16 slices

  • 1 package Chessman cookies (or any buttery shortbread type cookie), finely crumbled
  • 1/4 cup apple butter
  • 1/2 cup + 2 tbs Nutella, melted & divided
  • 1/3 cup TJ’s cookie butter (or Biscoff spread), melted
  • 1 quart + 1 cup fro yo of choice, softened but not melted

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Spray a spring form pan with cooking spray, then wrap tin foil around the bottom to avoid fro yo dripping out.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine cookie crumbs (reserving 1-2 tbs to sprinkle on top) with apple butter. I suggest just using your hands and getting in there.
  3. Press cookie and apple butter mixture into the bottom of the spring form pan and bake for 8-10 min, until set.
  4. Cool for 10-15 minutes, then spread Nutella on top. Let sit for a minute before brushing cookie butter on top of Nutella.
  5. Use a spatula to evenly spread the fro yo on top.
  6. Drizzle with Nutella and sprinkle with remaining cookie crumbs.
  7. Freeze for 2-3 hours until set, then serve and enjoy!