Tag Archives: muffins

Double Chocolate Banana Quinoa Muffins.

Gluten-free | Dairy-free | Soy-free | Nut-free

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Look who joined us a week and a half ago!

BabyIsaac-15He’s just perfection. His big sisters are always asking to touch and kiss and look at him; I’ve never seen them so excited about washing their hands!

We’re in the midst of the sleep-deprived, nursing-round-the-clock newborn stage, and I don’t know how it is that I always forget with each kid just how ravenous I get when I’m nursing. Here’s what’s been getting me through the day (and night):

These banana muffins, made with gluten-free brown rice flour blend

These peanut butter balls – the oats and flaxseed are fantastic for milk supply!

My mom’s zucchini bread, in muffin form (recipe coming as soon as I get the gluten-free flours worked out!)

And of course, these new muffins. They’re inspired by this cake, which is quinoa-based and naturally gluten-free, and which we had for both Mother’s Day and Father’s Day this year because we loved it so much. Quinoa is rich in protein, fiber, and iron, making it awesome for perpetually starving nursing moms, so I wanted to see if I could find a recipe that put the chocolate quinoa cake deliciousness into slightly-healthier muffin form. This one adds bananas for more vitamins and minerals, and removes the dairy! Wins all around! I decided to employ the cake recipe’s method of blending the quinoa until smooth in order to give the muffins that same delicious texture.

This recipe makes 1 dozen. Let’s just say I wish I’d doubled it right off the bat; they became such a fast family favorite, I don’t think there’ll be any left for me to snack on at 3am tonight!

Double Chocolate Banana Quinoa Muffins

Adapted from here

  • 1/2 cup gluten-free flour blend of choice (I used King Arthur Measure for Measure–or use all-purpose flour if you don’t need gluten-free)
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup cooked and cooled quinoa
  • 2 large bananas
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/3 cup Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips
  1. Preheat oven to 350 and spray the wells of a muffin tin with soy-free cooking spray.
  2. Sift together flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a large bowl. Whisk in white and brown sugars.
  3. Place quinoa, bananas, eggs, and vanilla in a blender and blend until smooth.
  4. Pour liquid ingredients into dry ingredients and stir until well combined. Stir in chocolate chips.
  5. Use a 1/4 cup triggered ice cream scoop to scoop batter into the prepared muffin tin.
  6. Bake 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out mostly clean.
  7. Allow to cool several minutes, then remove from the muffin tin to finish cooling.
  8. Enjoy!

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Oatmeal Spice Muffins.

Gluten-free | Soy-free | Dairy-free option | Nut-free option

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These muffins remind me a lot of my husband’s favorite “Freedom Puffs,” but are JUST different enough to not feel like a flimsy gluten-free counterfeit. The hearty oat flour creates a firmer bite and the little hint of orange in the batter just adds so much to the flavor! I’ve been having a hard time getting textures right in gluten-free muffins, but these do a great job without requiring extra steps and ingredients. They will definitely be a staple in this house!

Makes about 16 regular sized muffins, or a dozen regular plus a half dozen mini muffins.

Gluten-free Oatmeal Spice Muffins

Original recipe here

  • 3 1/2 cups quick oats (gluten-free)
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • optional: 1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 drops orange essential oil or 2 tsp orange zest
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup milk of choice
  • 4 Tbsp butter (or soy-free vegan buttery stick), melted
  • 1/3 cup sugar mixed with 3/4 tsp cinnamon
  1. Preheat oven to 350 and grease the wells of your muffin tin(s) with soy-free cooking spray.
  2. Put oats in a blender and blend to a flourlike consistency. Put oat flour in a large mixing bowl and add baking powder, salt, nutmeg, and pecans; stir to combine well.
  3. In a smaller bowl, whisk together applesauce, sugar, eggs, orange, vanilla, and milk.
  4. Add wet ingredients to the dry ones and mix with a spatula until just combined.
  5. Ladle batter into the wells of your muffin tin and bake 14-18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the centers comes out clean.
  6. Let cool until they can be handled, then dip the tops in the butter and then cinnamon-sugar mixture.

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Fresh strawberry muffins. (And how I keep my strawberries fresher longer.)

Dairy-free | Soy-free | Nut-free

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It’s strawberry season again! At least in Florida. Right here in our own county we have some of the nation’s biggest and best strawberries–the epitome of delicious local produce. So last year we started a family tradition of going strawberry picking at one of the many u-pick farms nearby. Last year we thought we did pretty well with 11 quarts; this year, after only an hour and a half, we ended up with 25 quarts! (Including the quart that my youngest filled with her strawberry tops once she realized that she could eat the strawberries she was picking…)

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It took over an hour and a half to wash and cut all of those strawberries! So of course after all that effort I wanted to keep them fresh as long as possible! Here’s how I did it: I filled the big bowl of my divided sink with a few inches of water and added a couple drops of Thieves essential oil (a blend of spice oils with proven antimicrobial properties–the story goes that during the Black Plague, spice traders realized that the spices with which they were in constant contact protected them from the disease, so they used their immunity to loot the homes of Plague victims, hence the name Thieves) to disinfect the berries; I also added several drops of Lemon essential oil, an antioxidant, to keep the berries from going bad as quickly. Then I dumped in a box, which was probably 8 quarts’ worth. After each box I drained the sink and started again with the water, oils, and berries.

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These oils are therapeutic-grade, so they’re very potent; a little bit goes a very long way! Because I didn’t need to use much, there was no weird lingering taste on my delicious berries, and the ones I didn’t freeze stayed as fresh as the Friday I cut them for the entire weekend–because that’s all it took to eat them.

Now I’ve got over a dozen quarts of fresh-frozen berries to find delicious things to make with! I’ll definitely be making fruit leather, popsicles, ice cream, and smoothies, but I wanted to try something new this year. These muffins are perfect for a spring morning. They complement and retain the sweetness-with-a-touch-of-tart of the strawberries. They use refined sugar, so they’re not clean, but I did use whole-wheat pastry flour to make them a little bit healthier and more filling while keeping them light. And they’re dairy-, soy- and nut-free!

By starting the oven at a high temperature and then reducing it, you get a great puffy crown on the muffins that leaves them very light and delicious. This recipe makes about 18 regular-sized muffins, or I did a dozen regular and another dozen mini muffins.

***Note: Canola oil is easier in this recipe, but as I had run out, I used coconut, and it lent a delightful depth of flavor to the muffins and left my whole house smelling incredible. However, unless your strawberries AND eggs are completely room-temperature, you’ll have a solid lumpy mass on your hands; I had to warm the oil/strawberry/egg mixture in my microwave at half power for several 30-second interval to get everything the correct consistency again.

Fresh Strawberry Muffins:

Original recipe here

  • 3 cups whole-wheat pastry flour or unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 4 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/4 cups canola oil or melted and cooled coconut oil (see Note above)
  • 2 1/2 cups fresh (or frozen from fresh–not storebought in a bag frozen–and thawed) strawberries, sliced and slightly mashed
  1. Preheat oven to 425 and lightly grease the wells of your muffin tins with soy-free cooking spray.
  2. Combine dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine eggs, oil, and strawberries, mashing with a fork if desired to get smaller strawberry pieces.
  4. Add liquid ingredients to flour mixture and stir until combined. Do not overmix.
  5. Spoon 1/4-cupfuls (for standard muffins) or 1/8-cupfuls (for mini muffins)–a triggered ice cream scoop works great–into the wells of your muffin tin.
  6. Bake at 425 for 5 minutes, then reduce heat to 350 and bake another 15-19 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

 

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Flourless double chocolate peanut butter muffins.

Dairy-free | Soy-free | Gluten-free | Clean eating | Paleo

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Not much to say about these muffins, except they’re quick, easy, and delicious! Don’t be dubious of the pumpkin – you can’t taste it at all. All it does is make these muffins incredibly moist! (And add a little extra veg to your daily intake…) This recipe yields about 18 muffins, or a dozen each of standard and mini muffins. The cupcake liners are purely optional; as you can see from the photo, the papers were practically falling off of the muffins straight out of the pan, and the mini muffins did just fine without liners of any kind.

Flourless Double Chocolate Peanut Butter Muffins

Adapted from here

  • 2 large eggs, room temp, beaten
  • 2 cups creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup Enjoy Life (or other vegan brand) mini chocolate chips
  1. Preheat oven to 350 and spray wells of muffin (or mini muffin) tins with soy-free cooking spray.
  2. Combine all ingredients except the last in a large bowl with a rubber spatula. You’ll have to stir quickly at first to get the peanut butter to incorporate, but soon it’ll all come together. Stir in the chocolate chips.
  3. Use a 1/4 cup (for standard) or 1/8 cup (for mini) triggered ice cream scoop to divide the thick batter into the wells of your muffin tins.
  4. Bake 23-27 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out mostly clean. Do not overbake!

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(Mostly clean) Honey Greek Yogurt Blueberry Muffins.

Soy-free | Nut-free | Mostly clean

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It’s blueberry season in Florida! We went picking on Wednesday at a farm just 15 minutes up the road. We were there less than an hour and came home with 4 pounds of blueberries, 2 pounds of the season’s first peaches and nectarines, and a pint of blackberries for good measure. So much amazing local fruit!

So needless to say, there will be some blueberry recipes popping up in the near future.

loooove blueberry muffins. They’ve always been my favorite, but usually they are so laden with butter and refined carbs that they can hardly be called breakfast. So I was so excited to find this recipe! I love the added protein from the Greek yogurt and whole-wheat flour. It still does have some refined sugar, but after much testing it’s really the only way to keep them both palatable and the right consistency.

Honey Greek Yogurt Blueberry Muffins

Original recipe here

  • 3 cups whole-wheat pastry flour*
  • 1/2 cup plus 3 Tbsp. brown sugar**
  • 1 Tbsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • heaping 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 cup lowfat Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup milk (any percentage but skim)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 large eggs, room temp
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup mild-tasting olive oil (or melted coconut oil)
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries, rinsed and dried well
  • optional: cinnamon-sugar for sprinkling

*Whole-wheat pastry flour is more finely sifted than regular whole-wheat flour, so it more closely approximates all-purpose flour in texture. You can sub in up to a cup of regular whole-wheat flour, but more than that and your muffins will end up too dense.
**I did sub in coconut sugar for those extra 3 Tbsp. and it didn’t affect the taste.

  1. Preheat oven to 375 (400 if you’re using a silicone muffin tin) and line your tin(s) with about 18 paper liners.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together dry ingredients.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together liquid ingredients until well blended.
  4. Using a rubber spatula, stir the wet ingredients into the dry until just incorporated.
  5. Fold in blueberries.
  6. Scoop 1/4 cupfuls into each well of the muffin tin. Optional: sprinkle each with a little cinnamon-sugar.
  7. Bake 18 minutes. (For a silicone pan, decrease oven temp to 375 after 9 minutes of baking.)
  8. Let cool a few minutes in the pan before transferring to wire rack to cool completely.

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Clean, Dairy-Free Banana Muffins or Mini Muffins.

Gluten-free option | Clean eating | Dairy-free option | Soy-free 

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UPDATED 7/11/17 (ooh! A palindrome!) with gluten-free option.

My friend Jessica is the first person I go to for clean recipe ideas–if I’m in a rut or just haven’t found a version I love yet of what I’m looking for. So today, when I noticed I had 4 bananas browning on my counter, and every other clean banana recipe I’d tried had come out completely flavorless, I went straight to her–halfway across the country. And as usual, we’re all full and happy over here. Isn’t food great that way? I love that even when miles and miles separate us, we can still gather together and keep in touch through good food.

This is a Martha Stewart recipe thoroughly substituted with clean ingredients. You should end up with up to a dozen and a half standard-size muffins, close to 3 dozen mini-muffins, or, like I did, a full pan of regular muffins and a half pan of minis.

Banana Muffins

Adapted from here

  • 4 ripe bananas
  • 2/3 cup coconut sugar
  • 1/4 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 cups whole-wheat pastry flour (or sub in up to a cup of regular whole-wheat flour with all-purpose flour)*
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup soured almond milk** or dairy sour cream
  • 1 Tbsp. vanilla

* GLUTEN-FREE: Substitute 1 cup brown rice flour, 1/4 cup tapioca starch, 1/4 cup potato starch, and 1/2 cup oat flour (I just put some oats in my blender, pulse them to a fine powder, and pour them in a mason jar for future use).

** Sour your almond milk the same way you make buttermilk: for every cup needed, add 1 Tbsp. of white vinegar to a measuring cup and fill the rest of the way with milk and let sit sit several minutes. In this case, add 1/2 Tbsp. of vinegar and then fill to the 1/2 cup line with almond milk.

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Grease your muffin tin(s) with soy-free cooking spray (I use PAM for Grilling).
  2. Peel bananas and add them to the bowl of your stand mixer. Use the paddle attachment to beat until well mashed, about a minute. Add coconut sugar, coconut oil, applesauce, and egg and beat until smooth.
  3. Add dry ingredients to bowl; mix on low until well incorporated.
  4. Add soured almond milk and vanilla; mix until well incorporated.
  5. Scoop scant 1/4-cupfuls for standard muffins and/or 2-Tbsp.-fuls for mini muffins (dough scoops work really well here) into the wells of your muffin tins. Bake 20 minutes for mini muffins or 25 minutes for standard muffins, rotating pans halfway through cooking time. Cool on a wire rack before enjoying.
  6. Store in an airtight container on the counter or freeze to enjoy later!

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Paleo double chocolate muffins/cupcakes and coconut cream frosting.

Dairy-free | Soy-free | Gluten-free | Paleo | Clean eating

These cupcakes may be decorated for Halloween, but let me begin by sharing something that I just learned:

Paleo baking isn’t scary!!!
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To keep the record straight, I have no intention of abandoning my beloved grains. But I had lately begun to notice that so much of my cooking was bordering on Paleo anyway–without being a buzzword–that it seemed like a logical experiment, especially when I learned that my oldest’s 1st-grade teacher is celiac.

So what is Paleo cooking? Basically the idea, and hence the name, is to eat what was available to our cave-dwelling ancestors (but a whole lot tastier and with more variety!): meat, eggs, seafood, veggies, fruits, nuts, and seeds. No dairy, grains, sugar, or artificial junk. (Obviously the sprinkles are NOT Paleo.)

So clean eating is basically Paleo + dairy and whole grains. And when you’re eating dairy-free anyway, the only thing you have left to cut out is the grains! Again, I don’t plan to cut out grains altogether, but occasional paleo choices have helped me lower my carb intake and see results around my waistline, even when indulging in occasional treats like this one.

These are really just muffins with frosting, and they taste just fine without the frosting. In fact, my coconut-averse middle child (is she really my child???) prefers them without the frosting, but they’re so much more fun to decorate with it!

The verdict? Let’s just say that her teacher asked to know my secret to successful gluten-free baking.

Double Chocolate Paleo Muffins/Cupcakes

(original recipe here)

  • 3/4 cup almond meal
  • 2 Tbsp cocoa powder (darker is better if you like richer muffins)
  • 3 Tbsp Enjoy Life or other allergy-friendly mini chocolate chips
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • dash salt
  • optional: 1/2 scoop protein powder (we used Vega brand chocolate flavor)
  • 3 eggs
  • 3 Tbsp unsweetened applesauce or coconut oil
  • 3 Tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  1. Preheat oven to 350. Line 9 cups of a muffin tin with paper liners, or use a silicone muffin tin.
  2. In a smallish bowl, combine dry ingredients.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, applesauce or oil, honey, and vanilla until smooth.
  4. Combine wet and dry ingredients, mix until well incorporated, then stir in chocolate chips.
  5. Pour scant 1/4 cupfuls of batter into papers. Bake 12-15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Coconut Cream Frosting

  • can full-fat coconut milk, refrigerated at least 24 hours
  • 1/2 tsp (or to taste) vanilla
  • 1 tsp (or to taste) honey
  1. Keep can steady and DO NOT SHAKE while removing from the refrigerator and opening with a can opener. Skim the cream off the top and spoon into a small bowl.
  2. Add vanilla and honey; whisk well for 2 minutes. If desired, place back in the refrigerator to firm up more.
  3. Frost muffins and decorate as desired.

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