Healthier Cereal: Homemade & Store Bought

Children love cereals.  And in this home, husbands do too.  Did you ever notice that most kid-friendly cereals are more suitable for dessert than breakfast?  In fact, we sometimes have cereal for dessert around here! But that’s another post.  For now I wanted to share a quick tip on how I make store-bought cereal a bit healthier.

Easy, right?  We have a nice size cereal container:

So we simply mix equal parts (or whatever ratio you’d like) of a sweetened cereal with its unsweetened counterpart.  Really any two cereals will work – they don’t have to “match”.  For example, you could mix plain Cheerios with Apple Jacks if you wanted.

Now for our favorite cereal.  It’s homemade!

photo by lissa.destef {http://www.flickr.com/photos/findingpurpose/}

This breakfast item is more budget-friendly than store bought cereal.  It’s also healthier and tastier.  You’re in control of every added ingredient.  Feel free to make adjustments as you feel are necessary as you prepare this homemade treat for your family.

Homemade Granola Cereal

In a very large bowl mix 12 cups of oats, 1 cup of coconut, 1 cup of whole wheat flour, 1/4 cup of flax seed, 1/2 cup of powdered milk, and 1 teaspoon of salt.

In a smaller microwaveable bowl combine 1 cup of olive oil, 1.5 cups of honey, and 1 tablespoon of vanilla.  Heat it long enough to melt the honey.

Pour honey mixture over oats mixture and mix thoroughly.  Spread on two rimmed cookie sheets and bake at 300 for about 45 mintues, stirring every 15 minutes to prevent burning.  Remove and cool.

The best part of this super cereal is all the customizable additions.  Add chopped nuts, raisins, cranberries, dried fruits, carob chips, or whatever you’d like!  Serve with milk, yogurt, or just eat it plain.  ENJOY!

Sharon’s Favorite Banana Bread

Baking is one of my favorite things to do, especially with friends.  It’s a time to solve the problems of the world, to share each other’s joys and frustrations; it’s a time for laughter and for encouragement.  Sisters in the Lord are truly pearls to be treasured and never taken for granted.  I thank God for my sisters in Christ!

This is my favorite recipe to pull out when the bananas go “bad”!  The riper the better.  You can add 1/2 cup chopped walnuts, chocolate chips, or both if you want.  My advice is to double, even triple, the recipe – the first one out of the oven will not last long enough for your husband to taste when he gets home!

Whole Wheat Banana Oatmeal Poppyseed Bread

Here’s how you do it:

1 cup sugar
1/3 cup margarine or butter, softened
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups mashed ripe bananas (3 -4)
1/3 cup of water
1 2/3 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking powder

  1. Heat oven to 350.  Grease bottom of loaf pan.
  2. In a small bowl, combine flour, baking soda, salt, and baking powder.  Set aside.
  3. Mix sugar and margarine; stir in eggs until blended.
  4. Stir in remaining ingredients until moistened.
  5. Pour into pan; bake until knife inserted in the center comes out clean, about 1 hour.

Sharon is a mother of four and an Excellent Wife of almost 20 years!  She lives in New Jersey where she teaches at a private Christian school, cooks, and bakes from scratch.