Never have I ever skipped eating breakfast. Even at 5 am before catching a flight. That’s when I usually pack a bowl of muesli to-go. We’re big muesli eaters over here (even when we’re not traveling), eating it about 3 times during the work week, alternated with scrambled eggs and toast. This breakfast cereal is fit for on-the-go or at the table.
What is muesli (myu-slee)? It’s a minimally-processed, lightly sweetened breakfast cereal made from a mix of raw, dried, and toasted ingredients (like oats, nuts, seeds, and fruit). It’s cereal—the very best kind.
It’s laced with toasted oats and coconut, raw almonds and pepita seeds, and sweetened with dried tart cherries, maple syrup, and a slurry of spices. Make a batch ahead for the week. Soak overnight or the morning of while making coffee. It’s a delicious, wholesome breakfast cereal that will keep you full until lunch.
About the book Pretty Simple Cooking, it’s brilliant, doable, welcoming, and vegetable-forward. It’s all the things I crave as a mom trying to feed my family with the best kind of gas, energy, calories—whatever you want to call it. The duo behind the book, Alex and Sonja, have become real life good friends over the years. In fact, I went on a trip with Sonja when this book was just a list of recipe ideas on a page. Now in print, this book is a masterpiece.
In an effort to get this book on every kitchen shelf, I’m giving away a copy! To enter: Leave a comment with your favorite weekday breakfast. Details: CLOSED. Open to US and Canada residents. Winner will be chosen at random.
This recipe is from page 22 in Pretty Simple Cooking by Alex and Sonja Overhiser. See my adaptations in the notes.
4 c. rolled oats
1 c. unsweetened large coconut flakes (not shredded)
1 c. whole almonds, roasted and salted
1 c. dried tart cherries
2 tbsp. pure maple syrup, plus more for serving
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 c. pepita seeds, roasted and salted
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. dried ground ginger
1/2 tsp. allspice
milk, for serving
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Spread out the oats evening on a baking sheet, then place the coconut in an even layer over the top. Bake 7 to 11 minutes, watching closely, until the coconut is evenly golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly.
Meanwhile, roughly chop the almonds and cherries.
In a small bowl, combine the maple syrup and vanilla, then heat in the microwave until warmed through and the consistency is thinner, about 20 seconds (alternately, heat on the stovetop).
In a large bowl, combine the toasted oats and coconut with the cherries, almonds, pepitas, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, and the maple-vanilla mixture, and stir to thoroughly combine. Pour the mixture back onto the baking sheet and spread into an even layer to allow the muesli to fully dry, about 10 minutes. Stir to break up any clumps, then transfer to a sealable container.
Serve with milk and a touch of maple syrup.
• I like my coconut barely toasted, so I toasted the oats for 7 minutes before adding the coconut on top and toasting 3 minutes more.
• Similarly, I prefer raw nuts and seeds in my breakfast cereal, so I used raw sliced almonds and raw pepita seeds. Then added a pinch of salt to the cereal mixture.
• I added the spices and pinch of salt into the warmed maple syrup and vanilla mixture to evenly coat the oats.
• The spices were warm and delicious. I’m also going to experiment using cinnamon and cardamom next time and maybe a little almond extract. This recipe is versatile like that!
• I added an extra tablespoon of maple syrup (3 tbsp. total) to the cereal to skip adding more before each serving. Call me lazy. It was perfectly sweetened to my tastes, especially with the addition of the dried cherries and coconut.