One of my favourite things about being a blogger is the unexpected opportunities that come as a result. As I’ve mentioned in the past, I work with a bunch of remarkable people every day in my full-time gig at lululemon, and together, we’ve managed to produce some amazing work that I’m really proud of. Not only is it great to get to the final outcome, but the process of brainstorming and working together to achieve it is always a fun one.
For the past year, I’ve been part of the very small but extremely nimble ivivva team. In case you’re not familiar, ivivva is lululemon’s brand for girls, and if it had been around when I was younger, I’d undoubtedly have saved up every penny of my allowance for months and spent it all on Rhythmic Tights and Keep Ur Cool Racer tanks. (Funnily enough, that’s exactly what 28-year old me does now, only it’s Invigorate 7/8 Tights and Cool Racerbacks.) Although my job is technically to look after all things email-related, what’s amazing about working on a small team is that you end up being part of projects you never anticipated you’d get to help with.
Creativity is something I never really thought I needed to feel happy in my day to day life, until I fell in love with creating delicious recipes with beautiful, vibrant, whole foods. The process of designing a recipe, picking out the ingredients (the smelling, the tapping, the squishing to make sure they’re juuuuust right), bringing it to life and photographing it all is something that undoubtedly takes a lot of energy and time. But it’s so incredibly rewarding and restorative that I can’t imagine my life without it. Even if I wasn’t a blogger, I think I’d still take a million photos of my food! Over time, I’ve also learned to love writing about it too, and obviously the whole eating bit has been a passion throughout! ?
Recently I’ve had the opportunity to help develop some recipes for the moms and girls who read the ivivva blog. It’s a place where you’ll find all sorts of stories about girls doing inspiring things in their communities and going for their dreams – again, exactly where I’d be spending my time soaking up inspiration if I were a 10 year old! I had a ton of fun working on one of the more recent posts, which included a Granola Fruit Pizza. (That original post can be found here.)
As is the case with many recipes, the inspiration for this one came when I walked into Whole Foods one weekend – dangerously, without a grocery list or recipe plan. With so many berries and stone fruits now in season, I couldn’t resist. One thing let to another and I found myself in the mood to test out a springform pan that I think may have had all of 2 uses since I bought it 2 years ago. Baking is always a risky endeavour for me, but I’m excited to report that this went 100% according to plan and turned out to be a hit amongst my teammates who got to do the taste testing. Here’s how you can make one too:
First, make your granola base. This could be done in a cake pan, but I used a 9″ springform one because I wasn’t sure if the granola would stick. (In retrospect, I think if you did a good job of greasing a cake pan with coconut oil you’d be ok – just let it cool completely first before carefully lifting it out.) If you’re vegan you’ll want to use maple syrup instead of honey, and I tossed the hemp and chia seeds in an extra fibre boost.
You can prep all your toppings while the base cooks, or make it ahead of time. Just be sure it’s no longer warm when you go to put the coconut whipped cream on top or else things will get melty really fast. Arrange your toppings around the granola base, remove the springform pan, then grab your coconut whipped cream (or dairy-free yogurt, if you prefer) and get ready to frost that baby. Or, I suppose it would be saucing because this is a pizza we’re talking about here.
I left about 2cm from the edge of the base so that the crust would still be visible, then began decorating from the center outwards.
When all was said and done, she looked like this!
You can use whatever selection of fruit you like on the top depending on what’s in season. I’m already dying to make another one in the fall with apples, persimmons, pears and pomegranates, and maybe a pumpkin-spiced crust. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves – there’s still LOTS of summer to be had!Print
Granola Fruit Pizza
A fun idea for breakfast, brunch or a healthy snack, this gluten-free vegan Granola Fruit Pizza is totally customizable with your favourite toppings.
- Prep Time: 20 mins
- Cook Time: 15 mins
- Total Time: 35 minutes
- Yield: 6-8 servings
- Category: breakfast; snack; brunch; gluten-free; vegan; vegetarian; dairy-free
For the base:
- 2 cups gluten-free rolled oats
- 3/4 cup oat flour (easily made by pulsing rolled oats in a food processor)
- 2/3 cup honey (or maple syrup, if vegan)
- 3 tbsp melted coconut oil
- 2 tbsp hemp seeds
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp chia seeds
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup plain coconut yogurt, almond yogurt or coconut whipped cream
- 1 tbsp honey (or maple syrup if vegan, optional, to sweeten yogurt)
- freshly sliced fruit of choice – I used blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, apricots and grapes
Preheat oven to 350 F.
Line the bottom of a 9″ diameter springform pan with a piece of parchment paper, or grease a 9″ diameter cake pan to prevent the granola base from sticking.
In a large bowl, combine all ingredients for the granola mixture. Stir them well until they resemble oatmeal cookie dough, then press firmly into the bottom of the pan in a single, even layer.
Bake the granola base for 15 minutes, then remove from the oven and allow it to cool completely. (You can place it in the fridge to get this done faster.)
Meanwhile, prepare your toppings. Slice the fruit and if you like, mix the sweetener into the yogurt to sweeten.
Carefully remove the granola base from the pan. Spread the yogurt/whipped topping on the granola base, leaving a few centimeters around the edge.
Decorate with fruit and any of your favourite toppings!
- The granola base can be made ahead of time if needed.
- Coconut whipped cream can be bought in grocery stores, or you can make your own by whipping a can of full fat coconut milk. If using coconut cream, I don’t recommend adding sweetener as it could affect the fluffy texture.
Now I’d love to hear from you… if you could have ANY type of pizza, sweet or savoury, what would it be? I think the west coaster in me would have to say a savoury seafood one – smoked salmon, shrimp, avocado, red onion, arugula, and some sort of tahini-based lemon dill sauce. Come to think of it… I think I’m going have to start creating this! ?