Who doesn’t love the crunchy goodness of granola? Check for some of these qualities the next time you reach for a bag.
Look For: Whole Grains
Any suitable granola should be made from whole grains, like rolled oats, brown rice and barley flakes. These fiber-filled goodies should be at the top of the ingredient list. Some brands offer unique varieties such as quinoa and spelt.
Recommendation: Cascadian Farms Organic Ancient Grains Granola
Look For: Natural Sweeteners
Granola without some sort of sugar would taste like cardboard. But the best bet is to choose a granola with minimally processed sweeteners such as maple syrup, honey and agave. Dried fruit will also add fiber, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
Recommendation: Bear Naked Maple-icious Pecan Granola
Recommendation: Nature Valley Cranberry Almond Protein Granola
Look For: Gluten-Free
Those who are on a gluten-free diet needn’t miss out on granola goodness. Many popular gluten-free brands now offer granola made with certified gluten-free oats.
Recommendation: Udi’s Gluten Free Vanilla Granola
Look For: M.Y.O
Control the ingredients by making your own specialized granola mix. Pick up some oats, nuts and dried fruit at your local grocery store or try some online recipe development with a company like Mix My Own.
Dana Angelo White, MS, RD, ATC, is a registered dietitian, certified athletic trainer and owner of Dana White Nutrition, Inc., which specializes in culinary and sports nutrition. See Dana’s full bio »