Bunny Muffins (Carrot and Apple Muffins)

FullSizeRender-4I was asked this week by my daughter’s pre-school teacher to make their Easter snack so I came up with these muffins – quick and easy and full of carrots…perfect for the Easter Bunny so now they are officially called Bunny Muffins. There is no sugar in these muffins (the sweetener comes from maple syrup or mashed banana and apple) and they have a hearty blend of carrots, oats and apples and would make a delicious healthy breakfast on the go or a perfect snack for your little ones. I like to make them in mini muffin tins for small hands and bite size snacks. I literally whipped them up as I was packing lunches this morning so they aren’t fussy and pretty quick to make.

Bunny Muffins
Makes 12 large or 24 mini muffins

Dry Ingredients:

1 3/4 cup whole wheat or white whole wheat flour
1/2 cup oats
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon sea salt
(you can add extra spices too such as ginger or nutmeg)

Wet ingredients:

2 cups grated carrots (preferably organic)
1 small apple, grated
1/3 cup melted coconut oil
2 eggs
1/2 cup maple syrup – OR 1 small banana, mashed
1 cup Greek yogurt
1 teaspoon vanilla essence

Method:

 

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350F.
  2. Whisk together all the dry ingredients in one bowl.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix together all the wet ingredients.
  4. Combine both wet and dry ingredients until mixed together.
  5. Distribute among lined muffin tins.
  6. Bake in oven for 15 minutes.
  7. Cool on a rack for about 10 minutes.

Thanks to Cookie + Kate for the recipe inspiration!

 

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Apple-Banana-Oat-Raisin Muffins

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I’ve been baking for as long as I can remember and it’s a wonderful tradition that I now love to share with my children. Both my children love it – the measuring out of ingredients, the mixing and the licking of the bowl after everything is in the oven. Think baking needs to be just sugary chocolate cupcakes with sprinkles on the top? Think again. There are so many ways to bake with lowering the sugar content and adding in nutritious ingredients like fruit or vegetables.

I’ve posted on my blog many times about some really great alternatives to traditional baked goods. Try my delicious sweet potato brownies or chocolate ginger beet and pear muffins with chocolate gaze or my apple and oatmeal bars. These all make perfect after school snacks or weekend teatime treats.

These simple muffins came about because we belong to a winter CSA where we get a weekly share of apples and pears (cue the cockney rhyming slang) and I was looking for a recipe that used fruit as a sweetener. There’s only a little but of sugar in this recipe but I think you could probably omit it entirely (except for the honey) and not notice it at all. These are easy and quick to make and taste delicious hot and fresh from the oven and keep for a couple of days in a cookie/biscuit tin too.

Apple – Banana – Oat – Raisin Muffins

Makes 12 muffins

Ingredients:

1 stick unsalted butter (1/2 cup of butter)
1/3 cup of brown sugar
2 medium eggs
2 tablespoons of local honey
1 mashed banana
1/2 cup raisins
1 apple, cored and cut into very small fine pieces
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup of oats (I like jumbo oats but instant will do too)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
a good pinch of salt

Oven: 350F

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 350F
  2. Cream together the butter and sugar and then mix in the eggs.
  3. Add the mashed banana and apple and honey. Mix well.
  4. Add the flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon and mix very well. Mix in the raisins. The mixture will be fairly moist.
  5. Spoon into muffin liners in your muffin tin.
  6. Bake for about 15 minutes or until the top is brown. Leave in the muffin tin for about 10 minutes to cool.

 

 

Pumpkin Protein Powerballs

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It’s that time of the year and pumpkins are everywhere. I have really grown to love pumpkins since I’ve been living in the USA and now proudly make pumpkin soups, smoothies and my famous pumpkin cheesecake for Thanksgiving every year.

For a healthy snack, these pumpkin protein powerballs are a big hit in my house. They have been with me everywhere recently from the playground to coffee dates with my friends. They aren’t too sweet and have just the right amount of pumpkin flavor in them. Plus they have added protein making them a great snack after a run or workout when you need an energy boost. These powerballs are dairy free and gluten free and are perfect if you are trying to eat clean or detox. My kids love them for an after school snack when they get a bit grumpy and “hangry.”

The ingredients are simple: pumpkin puree, protein powder, chia seeds, oats and spices. They are simple to make and you can have a batch stored in your fridge all week for impromptu nibbling.

Tip: you can even make these into a tasty breakfast too by mashing everything into a small container. Try half for a delicious filling breakfast which is a super start to your day!

Ingredients

1 cup organic pumpkin puree
1 cup organic rolled oats
4 scoops chocolate or vanilla protein powder (I love Shaklee’s protein powder)
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon water
1 tablespoon chia seeds

Method

  • Mix everything together in a large bowl.
  • Form into small balls and place onto a plate.
  • Chill in the fridge for at least an hour.

Apple and Oatmeal Bars

apple and oatmeal barsI’ve gone a little bit apple crazy this month, even though it’s not strictly apple season. I ordered extra apples in my CSA box this past week which I made a huge batch of apple sauce with and today, I made this simple and delicious apple and oatmeal bar with the applesauce too.

I’m always trying to find healthy snacks for my family that aren’t filled with sugar and are nutritious and will fill them up and give them energy. The apple and oatmeal bars are easy to make with ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen and will last you a few days. They are also easy to pop into lunch boxes or have for breakfast if you are pressed for time.

This recipe is forgiving enough that you can add in different fresh and dried fruit (I imagine pear and figs would be delicious here) and spices (allspice or nutmeg for example). You could even add an extra 1/2 cup of sunflower seeds too. This recipe is vegetarian, vegan and dairy free and perfect if you are on any clean eating or detox program.

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No Bake 3 Ingredient Energy Power Balls

3 ingredient no bake energy balls
I was asked this week to develop a very simple, quick and easy recipe for a corporate talk about health. This recipe is just that: something that you can make out of ingredients already in your cupboard that takes just minutes to make and is a portable snack that everyone will enjoy and will give you a healthy burst of energy at snack time! These are really great for busy moms on the go, after school snacks for kids or people at work who want a healthy treat during the day. Much more nutritious than grabbing a chocolate bar or donut and totally detox friendly.

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Chocolate Ginger Beet & Pear Vegan Muffins With Chocolate Glaze

Chocolate Ginger Beet Pear Vegan MuffinsI’ve been doing a lot of baking recently probably because this time of year signals the onset of chillier days and more opportunities to turn on my oven without fainting in the summer heat but also because I have two hungry children who love to bake with me and eat cake!

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Sweet Potato Brownies – OMG so good!

Sweet Potato BrowniesMy kids are always ravenous after school. I like – no, LOVE – baking. I don’t want to give my kids too much sugar – but we all love chocolate. My son is an especially fussy eater (sigh) and doesn’t really like vegetables. Add it all up and you get my new fascination with sweet potato brownies!

I’ve been trying out different recipes for these delicious sweet potato brownies in my kitchen all week with my own twist and have come up with this recipe. They are easy to make and are a delicious and guilt free treat any time of the day since there is no sugar and they are naturally sweetened with raw honey and the sweet potato. I use coconut flour which makes them an excellent gluten free option and together with the coconut oil, gives them a nice coconutty taste. The walnuts add the right amount of crunch. Make sure you use high quality baking ingredients and take some time to roast the sweet potato.  I find that making a double batch and freezing some is extra handy when you have lots of mouths to feed.

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