Here comes the first recipe of the new year! I can’t believe it’s already 2013…the year I graduate from high school! Lots to look forward to, lots to do.
It’s no secret that many people’s new year’s resolutions revolve around eating healthier, exercising regularly, losing weight, etc. So to help start your year off right, regardless of what your resolution was, I have a special treat for you all today…a special healthy treat, that is! During the holiday season it’s hard to resist the platters of cookies, tins of fudge, seasonal Starbucks drinks and other not-so-waistline-friendly treats that seem to be everywhere, and I’m sure I didn’t help much by providing tantalizing recipes for cookie dough fudge, chocolate candy cane swirl cookies, and other naughty treats. (That said, I still stand by the idea of everything in moderation, and if eating too much chocolate on Christmas morning is wrong then I don’t want to be right!)
Luckily, with these Raisin-and-Nut Bran Muffins that I created you can enjoy a delicious snack while still feeling good about what you’re eating! They’re full of fiber, whole grains and a small dose of healthy fats, resulting in a moist and hearty muffin. These have very little sugar compared to most muffins, but you won’t miss it! The fresh orange zest, vanilla, and plump raisins give these plenty of flavor and sweetness.
Here’s to a new year filled with health, happiness, and success! Try new things, make new goals, and remember to pause now and then and be glad for the little things in life. After all, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while you could miss it.” (Name that movie!)
Raisin-and-Nut Bran Muffins
1 cup oat bran (or wheat bran)
1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
1/2 cup packed brown sugar or coconut sugar
1 cup milk
2 Tbs vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 tsp orange zest
1 cup golden raisins
1/4 cup chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners (or lightly grease). Set aside.
Place the raisins in a bowl and cover with very hot water. Allow the raisins to soak while you assemble the rest of the ingredients.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the bran, flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and sugar. In a smaller bowl, whisk together the milk, oil, vanilla, eggs, and orange zest. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and stir just until incorporated. Drain the raisins and fold them in.
Scoop the batter evenly into prepared muffin tins. Sprinkle with the chopped pecans and bake for 15-18 minutes, or until tops bounce back when lightly touched and a toothpick comes out clean.