Laissez Faire

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Diary of an Inconsistent Cook #38: Homemade Budget Muesli

I am a fan of Muesli; not a fan of paying six dollars for a tiny box that lasts for three days.     I am also annoyed at having to read the ingredients carefully to be sure I am not also buying two scoops of added sugar.   If you haven’t had the pleasure of having muesli, don’t be afraid.  It is simply a mix of nuts, grains, and dried fruit; its sweet (not always healthy) cousin is granola.  If you’ve ever mixed two or more boxes of cereal together, you get the idea.

You don’t need a recipe.    The star of Muesli is usually old fashioned oats, but even if you don’t  like them, that is not the flavor profile of muesli.   Honestly, you can’t even taste the oats because of all of the other flavors, so do give it a try even if you normally pass on the oats.    Muesli can also be made gluten free and paleo friendly by skipping the grains and sticking to another base like almond meal.      The rest of the ingredients vary, but usually consist of other flaked grains like wheat and barley, mixed dried fruits, nuts, and seeds.       Endless combinations means you can customize it how you want it and add the amount of sweetness you prefer.

I base my muesli based upon what’s on sale and available for cheap.

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I don’t have easy access to flaked grains, so I improvised with no-sugar-added bran cereal and corn flakes.   Make sure you get your nuts unsalted!  I prefer my nuts raw, but you can get or make them toasted also.

Pictured:
Oats 42 oz (1.9kg) – $5.29      (the cheap brand was sold out.  Usually priced $3.50-$4.50)
Raisins 20oz – $3.29  (on sale.  Store brand also works well and sometimes less than $3)
Cranberries 10oz (284g) – $2.99 (on big sale; normally 5oz for $2.99.  I usually buy unsweetened)
Pepitas 9oz (255g) – $3.69 (these are shelled pumpkin seeds; lots of zinc)
Sunflower seeds 9oz (255g) –  $2.49 (I tend to go heavy handed with these)
Almonds 100z (284g) – $4.99 (on sale.  Normally these would be $6.99)
Raisin Bran 20oz (567g) – $2.00 (normally I just buy plain bran but it was sold out)
Unsweetened Corn Flakes 30oz – $2.00
Pistachios 80z (227g) – $4.99 (Because of how expensive they are I usually just shell a few and put them on top of the main muesli when in the bowl.)

Not Pictured:  hemp seeds.

If you are going to use small seeds like flax, hemp, or chia (or even large expensive things like Brazil nuts) I wouldn’t add it to the main mix because they will just sink to the the bottom.  Instead, add them like garnish to the bowl.    How much depends on what you like. You can add a lot or just a little.

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You want your ingredients to be about the same size.  It’s okay to crush the flakes if you have to use commercial cereal.  If you can get your hands on actual grain flakes then they will be about the same size as the oats.    I usually use slivered or sliced almonds instead of whole only because my three year old eats it and whole almond can be a bit tough for him to handle sometimes.

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Add more or less nuts, grains, seeds, and dried fruit as you like.    Pick the star:  fruit, nut, grain, or seed.   Or make them all co stars.    I use the oat container to hold the mix.     I am pretty sure I was able to fill one 42oz container at least 6 times with the above listed ingredients (I did use two tubs of oats though).     The two kids plus myself go through about one full container every two weeks.    Sometimes leftover nut or fruit carry over to the next batch.

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You just need to decide how you want to eat it.

Homemade on the cheap!

Have it as-is cold with milk or yogurt.
Warm it up with milk or water like instant oatmeal.
Let it soak for an hour or overnight with milk, water, yogurt, or orange juice.
Add a little sugar, syrup, or honey if you want to.

You can also go totally crazy and turn it into granola by mixing it with some oil, butter,  honey/syrup/brown sugar and baking it until golden and crunchy.

Add fresh fruit such as banana, apple, or peaches.

Have you had muesli before?

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This entry was posted on November 4, 2015 by in cooking, fruit, yogurt and tagged , , , , , , , , , .

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