Willy Vanilly Protein Granola

Thank you for your supportive comments yesterday. Not only was the carrot cake loaf fun to photograph, but it’s also been great to have with me while I recover from this darn flu-bug! As some of you pointed out, satisfaction + happiness does strengthen our immunity!


One of the girls in the neighborhood I grew up in liked to change her words around. She could say them normally, but she chose to change words thinking it was a cute way to speak.

“Yellow” was “lellow”

“Really” was “willy”

“Love” was “wuv”

… I could go on, but you get the idea.

My mom swore she was a bad influence on my sister and I. Not because she was wild, stayed up late, or was rude to her parents, but because she did this word change to every darn word out there.

I remember the first time; sitting at the kitchen table with my family, when my little sister said “Mom, this willy is the best oatmeal ever! I wuv you.”


I’d like to believe that this word changing habit influenced my parents’ decision to move us to a completely different city. My parents swear it had nothing to do with it, but if you would have seen my mom’s reaction that day when my sister said those words… you’d believe it too.


this granola willy is vanilly!

Willy Vanilly [Protein] Granola

Vegan, Gluten free, Dairy free, Corn free, Yeast free

Jam packed with vanilla, flax seed, protein powder and healthy oils.



  • 1 1/2 cups uncontaminated rolled oats – don’t use instant!
  • 1/2 cup almonds, chopped
  • 2 tablespoon flax seed, ground
  • 3 tablespoon unsweetened shredded coconut


  • 2 tablespoon maple mystery butter or almond butter + 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 2-3 tablespoon vanilla protein powder *see note
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin coconut oil, melted


  1. Preheat oven to 325F and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or a silicon baking mat.
  2. Combine dry ingredients in a medium sized bowl.
  3. Combine wet ingredients in a small bowl and pour into dry ingredients. Stir to coat before dropping onto prepared cookie sheet.
  4. Bake for 20-25 minutes being sure to stir halfway through to prevent burning.

Makes 3.5 cups of granola.

note: how much protein powder you add depends on how much you like your protein powder. I love my sprouted vanilla powder, so adding 2 tablespoon was no problem at all!

Did you have a large group of friends on your block?

YES! There were kids everywhere in our small town. There were 14 of us in our culdesac alone. Many a grounders game was played.

Were you a word changer as a kid or knew anyone that was?

What’s your favorite outdoor activity?

Now that I’ve moved on from grounders [although I'd be totally game to play it again] running outside is my favorite. I plan to do it tonight!

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Comments | Leave Your Comment

  1. There was a few girls on my street that I would play barbies with and make up song and dance routines when I was young…then they moved away :( When I was older, though, there was a huge group of guys (like 10 boys maybe?) that would all get together and play sports and stuff. Our favorite was whiffle ball!!!

    • Barbies! Oh man, feels like a lifetime ago since I’ve played with a Barbie. I wouldn’t even know what to do with one now. Our imaginations are so amazing, eh? I’ve never played/heard of whiffle ball. I’ll have to youtube it!

  2. The granola looks wonderful! And growing up we had friends on our block and we roamed the streets and played outdoors and life was simple, free, beautiful. Nowadays…no way would I be letting my kid just ride bikes in the street. I wish, but no. And no groups of friends on our street but we meet at the park :)

    • Yes, you’re so right. It’s not safe in many of the neighborhoods here either. Luckily we live in a small town and in the middle of a cul-da-sac, so it’s relatively safe here.

  3. That cereal looks straight up amazing! That girl would have driven my absolutely bonkers, though. I never was a word changer but when I was first learning to talk I had some super weird words that I used instead of others…like airplane was doondoon and balloon was oompah…no lie. How on earth I can talk correctly now is a wonder to the whole family, lol

    • bahaha your comment made me laugh. I’m glad you surprised your whole family on that one!

  4. I love that you use mystery butter! We have a co-op here that sells it in the bulk section, it’s different every time. I love trying to guess what the combo is :)

    • That’s so cool! I make my own, but I think it’s awesome you can get it at your local co-op!

    • haha I thought Kevin and I were the only ones! We do it ALL the time. “shoop shoop” means “MOVE!” And “shum-shumy-yum” means “wanna go downstairs with me to the kitchen and get something to eat, I’m starving!” I’d like to think it’s efficient.

  5. mmmm i love homemade granola! i bet if i were to make this, the entire batch would be gone within the hour. heehee.

    thanks for the tip about the bragg’s liquid aminos! i wish i could still eat soybeans. i have so many food allergies/intolerances that i can’t enjoy even the “healthy” foods that i used to eat! thank goodness there are so many great veggies/fruits/nuts/seeds out there. phew.

    • I’ve heard that you can buy coconut based soy sauce that’s soy free. I haven’t been able to find it, but I know it exists!

  6. Yum! I love granola and I’m always on the look out for inspiration to try new recipes. I’m definitely going to try this one out. What kind of protein powder do you use?

    I had a huge group of neighborhood friends growing up. Man, those were the days! Endless fun. My favorite outdoor activity these days would probably have to be hiking :-)

    Are you feeling better yet? I hope you kick that flu-bug’s ass!

    • For this recipe I used a sprouted rice protein powder. It’s non-GMO but I cannot for the life of me remember the name. I’ll check when I get home and let you know!
      Hiking is a great choice! I haven’t done that in forever. All this darn snow. I’m feeling much better today. Back to the grind :(

  7. The granola looks so delicious! And such a cute story to go along with. :mrgreen:

    Running is my favorite outdoor activity, along with backpacking and kayaking. Anything that gets me out in some sunshine makes me very happy. :D

    • I’ve never tried kayaking. I’m totally freaked of flipping over and not being able to get upright again. eak! Sounds sooo fun though!

  8. The granola looks awesome!

    I just came across your blog earlier this morning so I am excited to start diggin around here. But I must confess to you, I am an SLP (speech therapist). That poor girl probably wasn’t a “word changer” but sounds to me like she had an articulation deficit. That is something that can not be helped and will not improve without therapy :( Which is very sad for young children in school, because they are teased, and other parents do not want their children around them for fear they will talk the same way.

    • Thanks Helen. I should have mentioned in my story that she could speak quite normal as well. She just thought it was cute to change words around. I completely understand how challenging it must be for children that have an articulation deficit, and would never poke fun at their condition. I hope it didn’t come off as such. I’m so sorry if it did.

      • No, you didn’t come off that way. I was just thinking that maybe she told people she was a word changer because she was embarressed. I have come across that before with my young students.

        I can totally tell by your blog that you are a compassionate person that would never poke fun at anyone :) I admire what you do, think it is awesome, inspiring, and I am honored to be a new reader of the blog. It is wonderful to have people share their passions!

        • Oh thank goodness! I was worried my post went dreadfully wrong! I hadn’t thought about children ‘faking’ it because they’d actually struggled with it. I bet you meet some amazing children! Thanks for your kind words, Helen :)

  9. I wouldn’t have thought to bake in the protein powder, very interesting!

    I also love chia seeds in my granola.

    • Great call on the chia. I forgot to add it into this batch, I like it too!

  10. This looks delicious! I can’t wait to try it for breakfast!!

  11. Mmm love the granola and especially that it has protein in it. All the kids in my block were either a lot older than me or a lot younger so I never played with anyone lol

  12. I wish I hadn’t just used all my coconut oil or I’d be making this NOW. Soon though! Love that you added the protein powder – I always want granola post-workout and I need the extra protein.

    My little sister used to call me “Wawa” instead of “Laura.” Everyone thought it was so cute… and I’m still sometimes referred to as “Wawa” by my family even 20 years later! :)

    • That’s the cutest thing though! How much younger is your sister? Mine is 3 years and I still see her as being 5 years old. So hard to see them grow up!

  13. This granola recipe sounds great. I love vanilla anything
    My favorite outdoor activity is bike riding

  14. Ha! The word change reminded me of a recent episode of Parks & Recreation . . . oh the things we did to be cool and hip when we were younger . . . Thank goodness those days are over! =)

  15. We lived on a cul de sac full of kids. It was awesome. There was forest in between the different streets and we would spend hours there. Some of my favorite memories from my childhood are of my little brother. He had a speech impediment and so the ch sound became sh. And r’s and l’s became w’s. So, it went something like this, “hi. my name is Biwwy. I wike shicken and shocwate. and I wike to cwimb twees.” (translation: “Hi. My name is Billy. I like chicken and chocolate. And I like to climb trees.”) Precious memories!

  16. Just found this website and LOVE it. I also love granola but always wondered why i got so sleepy after eating oatmeal and found out i am alergic to it. Can the oatmeal be replaced with something else, have no idea what you could possibly replace it with, but maybe you know of something.
    im excited to try some of your recipes, they sound really good and healthy

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