Homemade muesli

Creating delicious homemade muesli

Homemade muesli is a winner when it comes to taste and nutrition plus it’s very easy to make! This homemade muesli recipe contains chunky mixed nuts, coconut chips, lightly toasted oats and a little sweet, tangy dried fruit.  The result?  It tastes amazing and provides a sustaining, nourishing breakfast.

The importance of variety

I’ve been in such a breakfast funk lately so this was a recipe to help get me out of it!  In between feeding a toddler, packing lunches and scraping bits of the child’s breakfast off the floor, sometimes cooking a bowl of porridge seems like too much effort!  So  I tend to grab the same thing over and over again since it’s easy and I love it.  I’m talking about you, crunchy peanut butter on toast.    However,  variety is one of the factors that’s important for a balanced diet.  By mixing up your meals and food you get a  range of nutrients, different types of dietary fibre and antioxidants to help keep you healthy.

To remedy my breakfast rut  I’ve been creating new muesli and granola recipes to keep breakfast interesting and give me some different options.   If you don’t want to toast the oats with the honey mix, you can simply make an untoasted version which makes it even easier.  But I think the toasted one tastes better!

To create this homemade muesli (also known as granola), the oats are toasted with a small amount of honey and oil.  This adds flavour and crunch. Then I add lots of nuts, seeds, coconut and dried fruit finish it off.  The result is a breakfast that provides a source of fibre plus a range of vitamins and minerals. The mixture of plant based ingredients, including wholegrains, nuts and seeds also provide a variety of types of fibre which are beneficial for our gut bacteria

Homemade muesli Recipe:


Homemade muesli

Homemade muesli is simple to make and you can mix and match different nuts, fruit and seeds if you prefer others.  

Prep Time 10 minutes Cook Time 10 minutes Total Time 20 minutes Servings 12


  • 3.5cupsrolled oats
  • 3 tablespoonsoilGrape seed, macadamia, melted coconut can be used
  • 3 teaspoonshoney
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1.5cupsmixed nuts
  • 1/2cupsunflower seeds
  • 1/4cupdried cranberries
  • 1/4cup chopped dried apricots
  • 1cupcoconut chips


  1. Preheat oven to 160 degrees Celcius 

  2. Melt together the coconut oil and honey then stir through the vanilla. 

  3. Place the oats on a large baking tray and pour over the honey mixture. With clean hands, rub this through the oats.

  4. Place in the oven for 10 minutes.  

  5. Stir the oat mixture and add the nuts and seeds.  Put the mixture back in the oven for another 5 minutes.  

  6. Remove from the oven and add the coconut chips and leave to cool.

  7. Once cooled, stir through the dried fruit and store in an air tight container. 

Another yummy recipe is this  plum, cashew and coconut granola . It uses freeze dried fruit which have an intense flavour and make it a little bit special.

What are your favourite muesli or granola combinations?  I’m always keen for new ideas so do let me know in the comments below.







Spelt, Rye and Seed Bread

Home made bread doesn’t need to be a huge effort and this spelt, rye and seed bread is testament to that.  After having a big fail with sour dough a while back, I thought I’d just start with an easier bread version – bread made with yeast.  I’m still definitely keen to give sour dough another go and master the art, but for now, this is still delicious.   I brought my flours at Binn Inn bulk bins so I could just get what I needed.  It’s a handy thing to do if you’re not sure you’ll use a big bag of rye flour etc.   The recipe creates one large loaf, and it’s a dense, filling bread that slices well.

It keeps for around 3 days wrapped in a tea towel, and if you have left overs, slice and freeze in an air tight container or bag so you can grab out a slice when you want.

I based this on a recipe from Be Good Organics – her version was a sour dough rye and is available on her blog.

Here’s my version:

Spelt, Rye and Seed Bread

2 cups rye flour
1 cups white spelt flour
1.5 cups wholemeal spelt flour (you can also use wholemeal wheat flour)
1/4 cup sunflower seeds1/2 cup linseeds
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1 teaspoon salt
8g instant yeast (this was one yeast sachet)
1.5 teaspoons sugar
2 cups luke warm water
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil

In a large mixing bowl, add the flours, seeds, salt, yeast and sugar and mix well  to combine.  Make a well in the centre and add the warm water, cider vinegar and olive oil.  Mix well.  You can do this in a cake mixer with a dough hook, or by hand.  Knead for about 5 minutes.

Lightly grease a large loaf pan (mine measured 22.5cm by 9cm) and add the dough mixture to fit.  Cover and leave to rise in a warm place for approximately 2 hours.   Lightly score the top in three places with a knife.

Cook the bread in a preheated oven at 180 degrees Celsius for approximately 35-45 minutes, or until cooked in the middle.  To check readiness – insert a skewer and it should come out clean.

This is delicious toasted with avocado and egg or a classic favourite, crunchy peanut butter.


Coconut, Chia and Berry Bircher Muesli

As the weather warms up hot porridge is becoming less appealing and I’m after new breakfast ideas that are filling and delicious.  I’ve been enjoying a couple of new options lately, including this home made bircher muesli.  I like to fill mine with a mixture of oats, seeds, nuts and fruit for a mixture of healthy carbohydrate, protein and healthy fats that help both nourish your body and keep you feeling full.

This version contains coconut, chia seeds, berries and banana and it’s a delicious almost tropical flavour combination.  I’ve topped it with some crunchy walnuts and lemon zest as well as some extra raspberries.  You do have to be a little organised and make it the night before, but it’s worth it! I make enough for two days, but you could half the ingredients for a single serve if you like.

Here’s the recipe.

Ingredients (makes 2 serves):

2/3 cup rolled oats
1 tablespoon chia seeds (or linseeds)
2 tablespoons coconut
1/2 cup natural yoghurt
1 1/4 cup milk
2 teaspoons maple syrup (optional – I didn’t use)
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
1 small banana, finely chopped.
1/2 cup raspberries
1 small banana, finely chopped.
Rind from 1 lemon, to serve
Coconut flakes, to serve

Place the oats, chia seeds and coconut in a pudding bowl and mix.  Pour over the milk.  Cover and leave over night.  In the morning, stir through the natural yoghurt.  If the mixture looks a little thick, stir through some extra milk.   Stir through the chopped banana and most of the walnuts, leaving a few aside for garnish.  To serve, place half the raspberries in the bottom of two glasses.  Spoon the oat mixture between the two glasses.  Top with the rest of the raspberries, walnuts, grated lemon rind and coconut flakes.


September food reviews

September has come and gone and it’s time to share with you some of the new food items I’ve been trying out over the past month or so.  Being a food lover, there’s always something new I’m trying and today I’ve rounded up a few new things I’ve been putting to the test.  Here they are:

These are pretty energy dense for a snack bar – but it is a large bar (75g).  It had a nice texture, quite chewy and it had yummy chunks of Whittaker’s dark chocolate in it! They’re a great source of fibre (10g a bar), and contains 20g of protein a bar. It’s also high in fats, with 20g mostly coming from the sunflower butter.   Silly me threw out the packet so I can’t remember the exact ingredients, but from memory it contains sunflower butter, whey protein powder, Whittakers dark chocolate, almonds, spirulina and it’s sweetened with agave syrup.   They contain about 18% sugar or 12.4g per bar (4 teaspoons of sugar).  If you were going to try these, I’d suggest the smaller bite size bars as a 75g bar is more than most would need.  Keep for a treat.  The other flavours look nice too.  Find out more on their website here.


Good Buzz Kombucha

I’ve reviewed the Feijoa before, but I wanted to compare the feijoa (my fave) to the original since it has slightly less sugar.  When comparing these two flavours, I really think that the original is just as good!  It kind of reminds me a little of cider, but without the alcohol and the benefits of probiotic bacteria.  A 330ml bottle of ‘Origins’ Booch contains just 5.5g of sugar, so just over a teaspoon.  Pretty good for a sweet flavoured drink.  A bottle costs around $2.99 depending where you get it from.

Venerdi Organic 6 Seed Sourdough

I was sent some Venerdi Organic Sourdough bread a wee while back to try and I really enjoyed it.  If I had to eat gluten free (which I don’t), then I’d probably choose this for it’s flavour and nutrition.  Ingredients are : Water, Gluten Free Flours (Brown Rice, White Rice, Maize), Tapioca Starch, Seeds (8%) (Flax, Quinoa, Sesame, Poppy, Sunflower, Pumpkin) Coconut Oil, Fibre (Flax Fibre), Vegetable Gum (Guar Gum), Rice Syrup, Salt, Yeast, Emulsifier (Sunflower Lecithin).  It’s high in fibre, with 8.4g fibre per 100g and I’m not 100% sure but I’m guessing it would be low GI as it’s got quite a few seeds in it and is sourdough. Comparing breads, it’s not the cheapest at $7.20 a loaf, but as far as gluten free breads go, it’s worth it.

 Vogels Buckwheat, Quinoa and Vanilla Cereal

I’ve been trying out this cereal for something different lately and I’m rating it.  Other flake cereals are either low in fibre or high in sugar, but this is both a good source of fibre and pretty low in sugar. I’ve written a bit more about it over  here.

 Urban Hippy Misomite

I’ve been wanting to try out more fermented foods so I bought this Urban Hippy Misomite.  This is a type of miso paste, but it contains less salt and more rice to give it a different, slightly sweeter flavour.  I bought this to marinade chicken and also for a dressing recipe, but I’ve yet to use it for that. I’ve just been trying it out as a spread on some sour dough bread.   It actually tastes quite a bit like marmite, but not as strong!  I really enjoyed it.  I love that it’s made right here in NZ too.

Viberi Freeze Dried Blackcurrants

Viberi kindly sent me some of their freeze dried blackcurrants to try out.  Like other berries, blackcurrants are rich in antioxidants (blackcurrants actually have more than blueberries) and are a source of vitamin C.  I tried both the plain and the chocolate.  These are definitely a little more tart than other berries, but I like that about them.  The Dark chocolate rolled blackcurrants were quite lovely.  They are covered in Belgium dark chocolate and dusted in cocoa.  The chocolate isn’t overly sweet and it complements the tart flavour of the berries quite nicely.   They’re organic too. Check them out online here

A new, lighter breakfast routine

While I’m normally an oats type of breakfast girl, sometimes you just feel like a lighter breakfast.  And now the weather is warming up I’m feeling like a change in my breakfast routine.

I haven’t really eaten flake type cereals for a long time as they can be quite sugary, refined or lack fibre, but I’ve been trialing a new cereal thanks to Vogel’s that hits the spot.  Vogels’ Buckwheat, Quinoa and Vanilla flakes are light, crunchy and just slightly sweet (it has less than 6g of sugar a serve).  They’ve got all the goodness of muesli or oats, but they’re lighter and easier to eat. They’re surprisingly filling too, a bowl keeps me full all morning. A serve contains 12% of your daily protein requirements as well as 15% of your daily fibre needs. Protein and fibre both help to keep you feeling full.

I top mine with some natural yoghurt and fruit and occasionally a few Vogel’s Protein Toppers if I’m particularly hungry.   These are also yummy by themselves as a snack, or mixed with fruit and yoghurt for breakfast too.


I was thinking this new lighter type cereal would be yummy in a healthier cookie, so I got to work and did a bit of experimenting.   Healthier cookies are a hard thing to come up with.  Often what sticks a cookie together is butter and sugar, and it can be hard to substitute these.  But I’ve done it!  The Vogel’s cereal adds a yummy, slightly sweet flavour and texture that means you don’t need a whole lot of sweetness from extra sugar, and the fluffy egg whites keep the ingredients bound together.   These are a different type of cookie, kind of a cross between a yummy coconut macaroon and well, breakfast cereal, hence the name breakfast cookies!  The cereal makes them nice and chewy, and they’re a nice for a treat for a snack with a hot drink.

You can check out Vogel’s new range of cereals here and visit their facebook page for more inspiration.

Here’s the recipe for ‘breakfast’ cookies.

Buckwheat, Quinoa and Coconut Macaroon Cookies


Makes 8-10 cookies

3 large egg whites
1/4 cup stevia
3 tablespoons coconut sugar (or brown sugar, adds a nice caramel flavour)
3/4 cup dessicated coconut
1/4 cup flaked almonds
2 cups Vogel’s Buckwheat, Quinoa and Vanilla Cereal
1/3 cup freeze dried berries (I used blackcurrants, these are optional and you can skip this step if you wish)

To decorate:
30g dark chocolate
coconut chips.


Preheat oven to 150 degrees Celcius on fan bake.

Place the egg whites, stevia and coconut sugar in a cake mixer and mix on a high speed for 5-8 minutes, until stiff peaks form.

Gently fold through the coconut and Vogel’s cereal.

Place tablespoons of the mixture on greased oven trays. Press the berries into the cookie mixture and slightly flatten with the spoon.

Bake for 15 minutes, or until very lightly golden.  While still warm, gently slide the cookies off with a metal fish slice.  Leave to cool on a cooling rack.

To decorate, melt the dark chocolate and drizzle over the top. Sprinkle over coconut flakes.

Store in an air tight container.  Best eaten within a few days of baking, so share these babies around 🙂


Thanks to Vogel’s I’ve got a delicious prize pack to give away containing  5 of their yummy products:

Cafe-Style Light Cereal (Buckwheat, Quinoa and Vanilla), $9.49

Cafe-Style Toppers – Raw Protein Mix, $10.99

Cafe-Style Toppers – Golden Toasted Protein Mix, $10.99

Cafe-Style Super Oats  – Wholegrain oats and chia with coconut, $7.99

Cafe-Style Super Oats – Wholegrain oats and barley with banana and pecan, $7.99

Comment below to be in the draw to win and like this post with the Facebook button at the top or bottom of the post 🙂

This post was made possible thanks to Vogel’s.

Congratulations to Helen Tam – winner of the Vogel’s prize pack. 

Creamy berry chia porridge

For a winter breakfast, there’s nothing better than a warm bowl of porridge.  If you think porridge is boring, then you’re doing it wrong!  There are so many ways to make your porridge delicious and interesting.  My favourite thing at the moment is adding chia seeds to porridge.  They add extra fibre and I like the texture they add to it.   Topped with yoghurt and berries, this porridge combination keeps me full all morning.   It’s a good source of fibre, slow release carbohydrates and provides a source of calcium.  Here’s the recipe.

For one serving:

1/3 cup oats
a few drops of vanilla
1 tablespoon chia seeds
1/3 cup milk
1/3 cup water
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup blackberries
3 heaped spoons yoghurt
coconut flakes and flaked almonds


Place the oats, vanilla, chia seeds, milk and water in a microwavable bowl.  Cook for 2 minutes, stir and cook for a further 1 minute.  Stir through the cinnamon.  Place in a serving bowl top with the Greek yoghurt, berries, coconut flakes and almonds.

Sweeten if desired with a drizzle of maple syrup.

Jelly Tip Cheesecake (the healthier, yet delicious version)

It’s almost the end of July, which, in case you missed it, was all about the jelly tip.  Whittakers Jelly Tip chocolate sold out in record time and even though I wasn’t a fan of the chocolate, Jelly Tip has been on my brain.  I wanted to create a less sweet, but super delicious dessert inspired by the Jelly Tip and i came up with this Jelly Tip cheesecake.  It has a nutty base, with a vanilla filling topped with chia berry jam and a layer of Whittakers dark chocolate. Quite delicious but still a treat.

Here’s the recipe:

Jelly Tip Cheesecake

For the base:
1 cup of mixed nuts (I used almonds and cashews)
1/2 cup ground almonds
1/2 cup dates soaked in boiling water for 30 minutes (drain well before using)
1/2 cup coconut
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons melted coconut oil (or butter)
1 tablespoon coconut sugar (or any sugar – optional)

For the filling:
250g tub cream cheese
1 1/4 cup Greek yoghurt (I used Anchor Greek)
2-6 heaped tablespoons powdered stevia or sweetener of choice (to reach desired sweetness)
2 teaspoons vanilla essence
1 1/2 tablespoons gelatine
2 tablespoons boiling water

Optional –  1 cup defrosted berries and some grated dark chocolate.

For the chia berry jam:
2 cups frozen berries
2 tablespoons chia seeds
(add sweetener if desired, I didn’t)

For the chocolate topping:
1/2- 1 block of Whittakers chocolate, depending on how thick you want the topping (or how much you eat before melting!)

Blend the mixed nuts in a food processor until the nuts are finely chopped.  Add the remaining ingredients and blend until the mixture is well combined.

Place a piece of gladwrap inside a 20cm round tin so it comes up and over the edges.  This makes it easy to pull the cheesecake out.  Alternatively, you can use a spring bottom tin.

Press the base mixture into the bottom of the tin.

Place the cream cheese in a medium sized glass bowl and leave out at room temperature to soften for an hour.   Or if you’re like me and don’t want to wait, place it in a bowl and microwave for 30-45 seconds.  Add the Greek yoghurt, sweetener and vanilla essence and mix.

In a mug, add the gelatine and boiling water.  With a fork, mix together quickly and stir until all the crystals have dissolved.  Add to the cheesecake ingredients and mix again well, until the mixture is smooth and well combined. If using the berries and chocolate, gently fold these through.

Pour the cheesecake mixture on top of the base and smooth the top with a spoon.

To make the chia jam, defrost the berries and stir through the chia seeds.  Leave to sit for about 30 minutes until it thickens a little.  Spread on top of the cheesecake.

Place the cheesecake in the fridge for 3-4 hours.  For the chocolate topping,  break up the chocolate and place in a glass bowl.  Microwave for one minute.  Stir, then microwave in 30 second bursts, stirring in between until it is melted.

Place in freezer for 3-4 hours until set.  Store in the fridge.  Serve with raspberries and  vanilla bean ice cream for an extra treat.

The new healthy lifestyles cafe range you need to try

Going out for brunch or coffee is part of my weekend routine.  There’s nothing like enjoying a relaxing morning with a good coffee and something delicious to eat.   When I go out, sometimes I like to treat myself, and other times I want something that’s both delicious AND healthy for me too.  I’ll let you in on a little secret.  If you want food that’s both delicious, healthy and a reasonable price then I can recommend Columbus Coffee.

They have had a healthy food range for a little while now, serving recipes from the Healthy Food Guide magazine.  Recently they’ve expanded their range to include a new Lifestyles Range – there are lots of healthy options which cater for different dietary needs, including gluten free, paleo and dairy free.

This weekend I headed to our local Columbus at Mitre 10 MEGA Masterton along with my husband to sample some of their new options.  I left with a full stomach and totally satisfied and impressed with what they had on offer.  My husband was pretty happy too!

Here’s what they have available on their new range.  It differs from cafe to cafe, but they will have some options available for you to try.

  • Chia Bircher Pod
  • Chia Seed & Coconut Pudding
  • Chocolate, Avocado & Chia Pudding
  • Paleo Bacon & Egg Muffins
  • Paleo Egg Wraps
  • Paleo Breakfast
  • Thai Chicken Stuffed Mushroom
  • Thai Chicken Stuffed Kumara
  • Paleo Crepes with Mixed Berries & Coconut
  • Mexican Meat Muffin
  • Raw Carrot Cake Pops
  • Bliss Balls

Here’s what I tried:

1. Chia Seed Bircher

In a twist from traditional bircher muesli, this is made with chia seeds. The bircher also contained apple, coconut, berries and almonds and it was really delicious.  It had a subtle sweetness, and was a nice combination of flavours and textures.  Chia seeds are a great source of fibre, and provide some plant based omega 3 fats.  Because it comes in a pod with a lid, this could be a great grab and go breakfast on your way to work too.  I’ll definitely get this again.

2.  Paleo Bacon and Egg Muffin

Whilst I don’t follow any particular diet (I just like to focus on a minimally processed diet),  I do appreciate a good bacon and egg muffin!  This muffin is simply bacon and egg, along with spinach and spring onion and is topped with a delicious zesty pesto.  It’s gluten and dairy free too.  The hubby and I both really enjoyed this, the pesto made it extra tasty.  This is a good source of protein and would be perfect to grab with a takeaway coffee for breakfast on the go.

3.  Thai Chicken Stuffed Kumara

The Thai chicken stuffed kumara was another yummy dish.  Kumara would have to be one of my favourite vegetables and it’s a nutrient rich carbohydrate. The Thai flavours came through nicely, but it wasn’t too spicy. This is a really filling dish and a balanced meal.  This was great value too. At my local Columbus Coffee, it’s just $9.50 which I think is pretty good for a large, filling meal. I couldn’t eat it all!

4.  Bliss Balls

Bliss balls are one of my favourites and I was excited to see these on the menu for a healthy sweet treat – something most cafes don’t have. I’m pretty sure these had walnuts in them as well as ginger and some citrus fruit too.  They were zesty, yummy and quite different to bliss balls I make at home which made a nice change.  The bliss balls were a good buy too, at only $1.50 each.

Dining out with family or friends often means different needs and wants. The great thing about Columbus Coffee is they’ve got it covered.  If your partner wants a pie, then they can have one.  If you want a healthy option, there are lots to choose from.  If someone is gluten free, then there are options.   There are no exuberant price tags, just good honest, delicious tasting food, and great coffee too.

This post was sponsored by Columbus Coffee.  All opinions are my own – I truely love what they are doing with their new range!

Blueberry Coconut Chia Pudding

One thing I love about summer is the fresh blueberries. When I was sent this recipe by Blueberries NZ, I thought it was too good not to post!  This could be both a breakfast or a dessert recipe.  With Chia seeds, it’s a great source of fibre and omega 3 fats.  Bananas provide a source of carbohydrate and potassium and blueberries are a fantastic source of antioxidants, as well as providing vitamin C and vitamin B6.

I haven’t tried it yet myself, but i’m going to this weekend.  If you try it before then, do let me know what it’s like.


For the chia pudding:
• 1 tbsp chia seeds
• 1/2 cup almond or cows or soy milk
• 1 tbsp shredded coconut
• 1 tsp stevia sugar

For the Banana icecream:
• 2 frozen bananas
• 1/2 cup coconut water
• 1 tbsp cashew butter or 10-15
roasted cashews
• 1 tbsp stevia sugar

• 3-4 tbsp fresh blueberries

Chia pudding:

1. In a bowl, add the chia seeds, milk, shredded coconut and stevia sugar. Stir well. Put in the
fridge overnight or let sit for at least 30 minutes.

Banana Icecream:

2. Blend the bananas with coconut water and cashews until smooth and creamy.

3. Spoon 2 tbsp of the Banana Ice cream into the bottom of a glass. Add chia pudding on top
of that, then add some blueberries, followed by the rest of the Banana Icecream.

4. Top with remaining blueberries and dig in!

Recipe and picture provided thanks to Blueberries New Zealand www.blueberriesnz.co.nz

Spring quinoa salad with asparagus and slow roasted tomato

This quinoa salad with slow roasted tomato, asparagus and pistachios is a delicious spring salad.

You know it’s spring when you see blossom, lambs, spring flowers and asparagus!!  At the market this weekend I bought a lovely bag of tender asparagus along with some vine tomatoes and felt inspired to create a fresh salad with quinoa.

I slow roasted my tomatoes and asparagus and made this tasty salad.  It’s perfect as a side dish for dinner and also for a yummy lunch.

Quinoa is a nutrient rich gluten free grain (well it’s technically not a grain, it’s a seed).  It’s a good source of phosphorus and is high in iron and magnesium.  Quinoa is also source of zinc, folate, thiamine, riboflavin, vitamin B6 and vitamin E.

Recipe for Spring Quinoa with Slow Roasted Tomato & Asparagus

1 cup of quinoa
2 cups of vegetable stock
8 small tomatoes, cut into quarters
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 bunch of asparagus, chopped into pieces.
1/2 cup chopped flat leaf parsley
1 small red onion
1/4 cup pistachio nuts


Preheat oven to 160 degrees celcius.

Rinse the quinoa and drain. Place the quinoa and stock in a pot and bring to the boil.  Reduce the heat and allow to simmer until the quinoa has absorbed all the water.  This takes around 15 minutes.   Once cooked place the quinoa in a bowl.

While the quinoa is simmering, place the tomatoes on a baking tray and drizzle with the olive oil and balsamic vinegar.  Set a timer and bake for 15  minutes.   When the timer rings, add the asparagus and cook both the tomatoes and asparagus for 10 minutes.

Take the quinoa and mix through the parsley, red onion, pistachio nuts and the tomato and asparagus.

Serve with some steamed vegetables and salmon or steak for a delicious, filling meal.