Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Strawberry, Granola & Yogurt Parfaits

I've been wanting to post this delicious, healthy treat for a long time now. I actually almost didn't, because things like this don't really require a real recipe, right? They sort of don't. But even though it's not a technically challenging meal to make, hopefully this post will serve as the inspiration you need to go make one!
The inspiration I needed to finally get this post up here for you was my son's fourth grade class. This past week and a half the students at his school have been busy taking their Connecticut Mastery Tests and each year the parents are rounded up to volunteer their healthy snack making skills. It's hard to make sure each kid in the class has a balanced breakfast on test days, so having a Mom in charge each morning helps spread the good nutrition throughout. It's amazing how rough hours of testing can be on 10 year olds - or any aged person, for that matter. Having a healthy, preferably protein packed breakfast, or morning snack, before testing can make a big difference in how well their brains perform that day.
The first day of testing was my turn. Unfortunately, I completely forgot about it until the morning of! We'll blame it on mommy brain. I jumped in the car with the kids, scrambling for some ideas on what to had to be something I could buy from a store at that point.
The idea of bringing greek yogurt parfaits came to me - so we ran to grocery store and picked up some Greek yogurt, a fruit plate and some plain granola. I set up a little 'parfait' bar in the classroom and helped all the kids make one for themselves.
I was unsure of how they would like them, as I think many kids who are used to fruit flavored yogurt, which tends to be super high in sugar, don't necessarily transition well to plain yogurt. I brought some vanilla flavored too and maple syrup as sweetener, just in case - but I was amazed by how many of the kids liked the yogurt as is.
When I picked my son up from school that day he told me that everyone loved the snack and many were asking if there was more to be had. That same afternoon, my little guy wanted some for himself too - and it was that day when the 'yogurt, granola and fruit after school snack' phase began.
Since then, it's become a cataclysmic disaster when we run out of plain yogurt. I've been buying the big huge tubs of Fage 2% plain Greek yogurt - which is by far my favorite yogurt brand. Not only do I love the texture and taste, but I also love that it has 23 grams of protein per cup! However, you can use whatever brand, or type of yogurt you'd doesn't need to be strained 'Greek' yogurt either.
This isn't the first phase of yogurt parfaits in our house either. The first time was after the Frigidaire event we went to last June. They served something very similar to this recipe, called Strawberries with Mint, Yogurt & Honey, at the event and my guys went bananas for them. The fad eventually wore off, only to be re-born again this Spring.
The version I made here is slightly different from the one's I make my kids because it has some slivered almonds added in {they both hate almonds}. For grown-ups out there, or adventurous kids, these are also great with some fresh mint added in too!
Try making these parfaits with homemade granola by using this Cherry, Pecan Granola recipe and substituting fresh cherries for the strawberries above. Here are some other Breakfast recipe you might enjoy too! - Banilla Smoothies | Breakfast Quinoa with Berries & Bananas | Mini Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins | Ricotta Pancakes | Strawberry Ricotta Muffins.

Strawberry, Granola & Yogurt Parfaits

Adapted from a recipe by Adam Kaye of Blue Hill at Stone Barns 
Serves 1 {or two little ones}
This recipe is very adaptable and tastes great with blueberries, kiwi, sliced grapes, melon, or any other fruit you may have on hand. In the winter, you could even thaw some frozen berries if needed. I love the addition of sliced almonds, but if the granola you use already has nuts, that works too! I like to use Back to Nature brand 'classic' granola so I can control what I add and can keep the nuts out for my kids. I've used maple syrup and agave nectar as sweeteners - and while both are great, I still prefer the taste of honey with yogurt. If you warm the honey in the microwave for 10 seconds it makes it very easy to drizzle - plus you end up needing less.

3 1/2 ounces fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced
1 teaspoon superfine sugar {or regular sugar}

1 cup plain Greek-style yogurt 
1 tablespoon honey
1/4 cup plain granola
2 tablespoons slivered almonds

1. Stir the sliced strawberries and sugar together. Let them sit and macerate for about 5-10 minutes.
2. Add half the yogurt to a serving glass, or jar. Drizzle on a third of the honey, then layer on half the strawberries. Top with the granola, and sprinkle on half the almonds. Repeat with another layer of yogurt, honey and strawberries. Top with the remaining almonds, drizzle on the rest of the honey and serve.
Click here for the printable recipe.


Jeanette said...

This is one of my son's favorite breakfast foods - he also likes blackberries on top.

Blog is the New Black said...

Gorgeous pics and these look to die for!

Joanne said...

Woot woot for Fage love AND for healthy snacks for kids...and adults too. This is definitely a kid-tested, mom-and-joanne-approved recipe. :P

Julia @The Roasted Root said...

Simple, delicious and nutritious. And beautiful!

london bakes said...

This is such a great snack for little kids (and big ones too!). The flavours and combination of smooth and crunch are just perfect.

Emily Elliott said...

This looks so fresh and healthy, Yum! Such beautiful pics as usual!

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