The first time I tried muesli was during a family trip to Europe, just after graduating college and a month before getting married. For a few nights, we stayed at the cutest bed and breakfast in a small English village where every morning we had the option of ordering a traditional hot English breakfast or serving ourselves from the provided continental breakfast. It was there that I first tried muesli, a combination of raw oats, nuts, and dried fruit typically served with milk and fresh fruit, and I absolutely loved it! I decided to make my own muesli at home, and this Hazelnut and Apricot Muesli is the result. It's hearty and filling, yet light, super easy to prep (not to mention shelf stable), and is a great way to switch up your standard breakfast routine.
What is Muesli?
Muesli originated in Switzerland. Traditionally, muesli consisted of raw oats, nuts, apples, lemon juice, water, and sweetened condensed milk. Today, however, muesli typically consists of a combination of oats, nuts, seeds, and dried fruit.
Although the ingredients are similar to granola, muesli isn't baked; however, you can toast the nuts and oats with or without spices before combining the ingredients to bring out more flavor and natural sweetness.
Muesli can be served raw with milk and/or probiotic rich Greek yogurt, soaked in milk overnight to make overnight oats, or prepared just like your favorite traditional oatmeal. It's really up to you and your preferences! Personally, I prefer this muesli raw with cow's milk, a spoonful or two of plain Greek yogurt, frozen wild blueberries, and a drizzle of nut or seed butter.
Lean more about the benefits of probiotics here!
Add Muesli to Your Breakfast Rotation
If you're a fan of oats or granola, you need to add muesli to your regular breakfast rotation. This Hazelnut and Apricot Muesli is a simple to prepare, nourishing, and delicious served a variety of ways (see above section).
In addition to being delicious, filling, and super easy to make, Hazelnut and Apricot Muesli is rich in fiber, energizing carbs, and healthy fats as well as vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Whole grain oats, flax meal, dried fruit, shredded coconut, and hazelnuts all contain fiber, a very important nutrient under consumed by the majority of Americans. Fiber intake promotes overall health by aiding in the regulation of blood sugars and promoting regularity (if you know what I mean) and may reduce one's risk of developing several chronic conditions including but not limited to heart disease, diabetes, constipation, and diverticular disease.
Starting most days with a balanced, fiber-rich breakfast like this muesli with fresh fruit and cow's milk or soy milk is a great way to promote your overall health and keep you filled and fueled until lunch.
Other breakfast recipes with oats that you will LOVE:
The Benefits of Dried Fruit
Before we get into the recipe, I want to talk about one of my favorite, but totally underrated ingredients in this recipe – dried apricots. Did you know that dried fruit, like fresh fruit, contains a wealth of beneficial nutrients? Though shelf stable, dried fruits are nutrient dense foods that are particularly rich in fiber, potassium, and beneficial phytochemicals. Consuming unsweetened dried fruit as part of a balanced diet can be a great, convenient way to get in your fruit for the day and promote your overall health.
Dried apricots, like other dried fruits, contain fiber and potassium as well as calcium, iron, magnesium, folate, and beta carotene, a phytochemical. Beta carotene is a precursor to vitamin A that acts as an antioxidant and can be found in a variety of yellow, orange, and red fruits and vegetables. Consuming delicious foods, like dried apricots, that are rich in beta-carotenes may help to reduce one's risk of developing some cancers, cardiovascular disease, and macular degeneration.
And what's more, dried apricots are delicious! They add such a nice sweetness and chewiness to this Hazelnut and Apricot Muesli that pairs wonderfully with crunchy hazelnuts, warm and spicy cinnamon, and hearty oats.
What's in This Recipe?
Old fashioned oats* – a whole grain; rich in soluble fiber and energizing carbohydrates
Shredded coconut – contains healthy fats and fiber
Flax meal – contains beneficial omega-3 fatty acids, plant-based protein, and fiber
Dried cranberries – contains antioxidants and fiber; has antibacterial properties
Dried apricots – contains fiber, potassium, calcium, iron, magnesium, folate, and beta carotene
Hazelnuts – contains folate, vitamin E, proanthocyanidin, manganese, copper, fiber, heart healthy fats, and plant-based protein
Coconut sugar or brown sugar – adds sweetness
Seasonings and spices – cinnamon and salt
Notes: This recipe is naturally vegan and can easily be made gluten free* by using your favorite gluten free old fashioned oats.
Hazelnut and Apricot Muesli
Prep time: 10 minutes Cook time: 0 minutes Total time: 10 minutes Servings: 3-4 servings
1 cup old fashioned oats
1/3 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
2 tbsp. flax meal
3 tbsp. dried cranberries
3 tbsp. dried apricots, chopped
1/2 cup (2 oz) hazelnuts
1 1/2 tsp. coconut sugar or brown sugar
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
Sprinkle of salt
Combine the above ingredients and store in an airtight, glass container.
Serve with milk of choice, frozen wild blueberries, and nut butter, prepare like traditional oatmeal, or make overnight oats.