When I was little, I had a bit of a sweet tooth. Actually, it was more like a saber-tooth-tiger-sized sweet tooth, meaning that if I could I would inhale every piece of sugar that came my way. Lucky for me I had the metabolism of a hummingbird and two parents whose idea of treats was honey sticks, organic rice pudding, and homemade fruit juice popsicles. Maybe it was because we only had junk food on special occasions (Jell-O when we were sick, Starbursts when we went to the movies, Dove Bars when my grandparents visited) that I was unstoppable when supplied with sugary treats.
Whenever we stayed at hotels, I always took full advantage of the complimentary breakfast, piling my plate high with danishes, cinnamon rolls, muffins, and whatever other sugary carbs were available in the little plastic display cases. It was another one of those special occasions I so looked forward to. My parents used to worry about what would happen to me once I grew up and moved out of the house. I think they pictured me going walking into the grocery store and having free reign to buy whatever I felt like, and that was a terrifying image at the time.
They needn’t have worried, because now I’m much more sensible. I sample what I bake and eat some candy, but for the most part I stay away from overly-processed, corn-syrup-ridden junk. Moderation is my motto, and my parents no longer fear that their only daughter will become a walking block of sugar–I do most of our grocery shopping, too, and I can promise it’s all quite healthy…for the most part ;).
However, for those of you that still have insatiable sweet tooths (sweet teeth just sounded weird), I have a chocolatey treat that I think you’ll love…and your waistline will love too! These are the type of muffin that you don’t have to feel guilty about piling onto your breakfast plate…they’re gluten-free, low-fat, and low-sugar, but still super moist, rich, and delicious. My mom, who’s been gluten-free for a few years now and hasn’t had a “cupcake,” as she called these, in forever, proclaimed that these were “the BEST cupcakes” she thinks she’s ever had. Of course, given the amount of time she’s spent away from gluten I doubted she could even remember what a real cupcake tastes like. When I tasted one, though, I ate my words–no pun intended! The texture is really more like a cupcake than a muffin, with a fine crumb and a mega-chocolate flavor. The oats add a little chewiness, which I love, and the coconut sugar and sprinkling of coconut flakes give just a hint of tropical flavor. If someone had told me when I was six that I could eat a chocolate cupcake
for breakfast, I would have practically fainted with glee.
It’s true that you’re totally justified to eat these for breakfast. They’re practically health food. Seriously. Go for it. YOLO.
Skinny Chocolate Coconut Muffins
Yield: about 18 standard-size muffins
1 cup hot water*
3 large egg whites
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 3/4 cup oats
1 cup coconut sugar (or granulated sugar)
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
1/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
*Alternately, you could omit the cream of tartar and use 1 cup of buttermilk
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 18 muffin tins with paper liners and set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, egg whites, applesauce, yogurt, and vanilla until smooth. Stir in the oats, coconut sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, cream of tartar, and salt. When incorporated, stir in the chocolate chips.
Scoop the batter into prepared muffin tins, filling about 3/4 of the way. Sprinkle batter with shredded coconut and bake for 18-22 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out with just a few moist crumbs. Cool and enjoy!
(Recipe adapted from Six Sisters’ Stuff)