Banana Flaxseed Muffins

muffins1At the beginning of each October, my university has a so-called “fall break” which is actually nothing more than a 3-day weekend. I’m totally on board with the idea of this mini-vacation, but its actual application seems pretty half-hearted. If you’re going to call it a break, make it a break! Three days was just long enough for me to make the 7-hour journey home, collapse into relaxing familiarity for 40-some hours, and then tear myself away to drive all the way back to school. It felt more like a teaser than anything else, especially for a homebody like myself. Still, I’m grateful for my brief recharge at home, and I need to keep reminding myself that relaxation often morphs into boredom after too many days. Okay, maybe not 2 measly days, but let’s stay positive!

One of my projects during my time at home was to re-stock the freezer with easy grab-and-go breakfasts for my mom. She’s not exactly a morning person, and I know for a fact that breakfast is virtually the last thing on her mind as she gets ready for work. You know someone like that, too? Good. Make them these muffins!muffins2

These Banana Flaxseed Muffins are perfect for a quick, healthy breakfast. I like to make a full batch ahead of time and store them in the freezer for those busy mornings. They can be made gluten-free, but you can also use a mixture of whole wheat and all-purpose flour if gluten isn’t an issue. Unlike so many muffins that are basically frosting-less cupcakes, these are full of healthy ingredients to give you an energy boost without the crash. Bananas serve as the main sweetener, and they also lend the muffins a soft, moist texture. Flaxseed brings in some heart-healthy fat, and warm spices give the muffins extra flavor. You can even make them vegan by using agave nectar and soy or almond milk!

I love knowing that my mom now has a few weeks’ supply of muffins for breakfast, settled right next to the chili I made for my dad (which he will most likely not eat for breakfast, just so we’re clear). I’m sure they’re capable of fending for themselves (after all, they managed just fine until I came along) but I also know how much they miss my cooking and baking! Make your own friends and family happy by baking them a batch of these Banana Flaxseed Muffins. There’s nothing like a pre-made, homemade, healthy, on-hand breakfast to show them that you care!muffins4

Banana Flaxseed Muffins

Makes one dozen standard-size muffins

1 & 3/4 cups gluten-free flour blend (or all-purpose flour)

1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum (if using gf flour)

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

2 medium ripe bananas, mashed

1/2 cup milk (I used soy milk)

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1/4 cup agave nectar or honey

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 tablespoons ground flaxseed

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line or grease a 12-cup muffin tin and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, xanthan gum, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Set aside.

In a smaller bowl, whisk together the mashed bananas, milk, oil, agave, vanilla, and flaxseed. Using a rubber spatula, fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients just until no flour streaks remain. Scoop the batter evenly into the muffin tins.

Bake for 5 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees and bake for an additional 13-17 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Let the muffins cool in the pan for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack.

(Recipe adapted from Anecdotes and Apples)

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Loaded Morning Glory Muffins

IMG_3396Another good name for these muffins would be Everything-but-the-Kitchen-Sink Muffins. I’m not quite sure who came up with that phrase to describe recipes that are full of add-ins, but I just like the sound of it. I suppose the phrase could have been everything-but-the-oven-door or everything-but-the-moldy-cheese, but someone chose “kitchen sink.” I can’t say it makes much sense, but people get what you’re talking about and it’s a lot more fun to say than “muffins filled with a whole bunch of stuff.” However, just in case someone out there read the title and got confused and pictured a batch of muffins made with dirty sink-water or something, I stuck with Loaded Morning Glory Muffins, which also has a nice ring to it. Very glorious-sounding, I’d say. And so concludes the end of my unnecessary thought process.

These muffins are based off of the infamous Morning Glory muffin…you know, those bakery muffins that are the size of your head and lumpy and brownish and full of peculiar objects? The the kind of muffin that your mom always chose and offered you a bite of, leading you to politely shriek “no, thank you!” while stuffing your face with your favorite blueberry-cream cheese muffin? You know those ones?

IMG_3393Needless to say, Morning Glory Muffins never much appealed to me throughout my childhood but now I can’t get enough! They’re packed full of carrots, zucchini, shredded coconut, dried cranberries, chopped apple, applesauce, flaxseed, and nuts (although I left those out in my version for no good reason other than not having any). I’ve seen some recipes that include diced pineapple as well, but I figured I had to stop stirring things in at some point. Not to mention that I didn’t have any pineapple, either.

Basically, my Morning Glory Muffins are a meal in themselves. The carrot, zucchini, apple, oil, and buttermilk come together to keep the muffins super soft and moist, and every bite is loaded with texture. They aren’t exactly health food, but compared to many muffins (ahem, blueberry-cream cheese muffins of my past) they’re not too shabby. I mean, as long as whole wheat flour, heart-healthy fats, fruit, and even vegetables are in there you can claim to be eating a healthy snack. I’ll totally back you up. 🙂IMG_3403

Loaded Morning Glory Muffins

Makes 18-20 standard-sized muffins

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup whole wheat flour

1 cup granulated sugar

1/4 cup brown sugar

2 teaspoons baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

3 large eggs (I used 2 eggs + 1 “flax egg” made w/ 1 Tbs ground flaxseed mixed with 3 Tbs water and left to sit for 5 minutes)

1/3 cup vegetable oil

1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce

1/3 cup buttermilk

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 medium apple, finely diced

2 cups shredded carrots (I used a mix of carrots and zucchini)

1/2 cup shredded coconut

1/2 cup dried cranberries or raisins

1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease or line muffin tins and set aside.

In a large bowl whisk together the flours, sugars, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. In a smaller bowl whisk together the eggs (and flaxseed mixture, if using), oil, applesauce, buttermilk, and vanilla until smooth. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and stir just until combined.

Fold in the chopped apple, shredded carrots/zucchini, coconut, cranberries, and nuts. Scoop the batter into the prepared muffin tins, filling 3/4 way. Bake for 18-22 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.

Let the muffins cool in the tins for 10 minutes, then carefully move to a cooling rack. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.

Blueberry-Vanilla Bean Muffins

IMG_3098Once upon a time, I baked a beautiful batch of Blueberry-Vanilla Bean Muffins. I used my favorite blue flowery muffin liners, selected the prettiest muffins (not without a touch of mother-like guilt for the rest of the still-beautiful-in-their-own-way rejects), and coerced my favorite photographer into capturing them on camera. My favorite photographer and I happen to share a home, birthday, and set of parents, which makes picture-taking quite convenient. We have a great system, Sam and I: I bake delicious treats, Sam takes pictures of them, and then he is paid in baked goods. Pretty much a win-win situation.

So, these muffins began just like any other recipe for my blog. Bake, cool, photograph. But then trouble happened. A few days after taking the pictures I started a new blog post, typed up the muffin recipe, and asked Sam for the SD card with the blueberry muffin pictures on it.

“What muffins?” That was the first clue that something was not right. “Ohhh, those muffins. That was a while ago, wasn’t it?” Well yes, I supposed it was. He looked. And looked. And looked. To no avail. Finally we admitted defeat….the beautiful blueberry muffin photos were no more. 😥

It turned out that Sam had taken pictures for a wedding the day after photographing the muffins, and somehow his camera card had cleared itself and stored the wedding photos over the muffin ones. Too bad, so sad. But seriously. I went along with a different post (luckily I was ahead of the game and had a different treat ready to go) but I didn’t forget about the muffins.

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I knew that I must share them with you. So unfortunately, I had got to make them again. Guess it wasn’t so bad after all, since I ended up with another batch of fabulous muffins! Plus it gave me a chance to make a few little adjustments. The first time around, I found myself out of vanilla extract halfway through the recipe. Usually whenever this happens I cry a little inside since I’m a firm believer that vanilla is always ALWAYS necessary, but this time I remembered the trillion-dollar Madagascar vanilla beans hidden away in my pantry. I had been planning on using them for an extra-special recipe, but then I thought about it and decided that life is too short to let the vanilla beans hide away in a cupboard waiting for the perfect occasion. Every occasion is perfect; every recipe is special! (Please excuse the cheesiness.) In short, I used those vanilla beans and I used them good!

Back to the muffin adjustments…even though the second time I made them I had plenty of vanilla extract, I kept remembering how wonderful the first batch was with the vanilla bean seeds. There’s something so alluring about those little black flecks mixed into thick batter, and they add such incredible flavor. I still had half a bean left over from the original muffins so I scraped it clean and added those seeds right into the mixture! For the second batch I also reserved 1/2 a cup of blueberries to sprinkle on top right before baking so that they weren’t covered up with batter. I like to really see those dark juicy berries on top of the muffins, you know? Makes them more eye-catching.

All in all, I guess it wasn’t so bad to have all the first pictures erased. These muffins are totally worth making again and again. They’re some of the best darn blueberry muffins I’ve ever had…perfectly soft, sweet, moist, vanilla-y (if that’s even a word), and of course bursting with fresh blueberries. Now that I think of it, Sam’s word is the only evidence I have for the mysterious wipe-out of those first pictures…could it be that he was willing to tell a little white lie if it meant getting to eat more blueberry muffins? Perhaps we’ll never know.

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Blueberry-Vanilla Bean Muffins

Makes 15-16 standard-size muffins

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 Tbs + 1 tsp baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs, at room temperature (place in a bowl of warm water for 5 minutes to bring to room temp if you’re short on time)

1 cup granulated sugar

1 cup buttermilk

1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil

Seeds from half of a vanilla bean (or substitute 1 teaspoon vanilla extract)

1 & 1/2 cups blueberries, fresh or frozen (if frozen, do not thaw)

Extra sugar, for sprinkling

Directions:

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Grease or line 15-16 cups in a muffin tin and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the eggs and sugar until smooth. Whisk in the buttermilk, oil, and vanilla beans (or vanilla) into the egg mixture until well-combined.

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and stir gently, just until no flour streaks remain. Be careful not to over-mix! Batter will be thick and slightly lumpy. Fold in the blueberries, reserving 1/2 cup.

Evenly spoon the batter into the prepared muffin tins, filling almost to the top (again, you will have 15-16 muffins). Top with remaining blueberries and sprinkle with coarse sugar if desired. Bake for 5 minutes, then decrease the oven temperature to 375 degrees and bake for an additional 13-15 minutes. When the tops bounce back lightly when touched and an inserted toothpick comes out clean, take the muffins out of the oven.

Let the muffins cool for 10 minutes in the tin, then carefully remove to a cooling rack. Enjoy immediately or store in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

(Recipe adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction)

Flourless Chocolate-Peanut Butter-Banana Muffins

IMG_0388First of all…Happy 2nd Anniversary to Emma’s Baking Addiction! I can’t believe that two years ago I sat down and created a WordPress account with no idea what I was doing. Sometimes I still feel like I have no idea what I’m doing, but it’s been fun 🙂

These muffins were made with my mother in mind. My poor gluten-free, dairy-free mother, who has to watch as piles of cookies, ice cream, brownies and other taboo treats fill our kitchen, knowing she can’t have them. She never complains, not once, but I try to make sure that I create a fair share of gluten-free, dairy-free baked goods as well.

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The last mom-friendly treats I made were these awesome little energy balls, but they were eaten up in approximately 12 seconds, give or take a couple days. The problem with gluten-free treats is that they are also accessible and perfectly acceptable to the gluten-eaters in the house, and unless I clearly label treats as being “FOR MOM” (or hide them), they disappear way too quickly. Which is why, after the last three blog posts centered around cookies and ice cream, it was time to make these muffins.

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What these muffins do have: peanut butter, chocolate, & banana (one of the ULTIMATE flavor trios), heart-healthy flaxseed, and a handful of other healthy ingredients. What these muffins do not have: FLOUR, gluten, dairy, or more than two tablespoons of refined sugar. What these muffins require: a bowl, a spoon, a muffin tin, and some measuring cups. That’s it! They don’t require worrying about over-mixing (which can create tough muffins, but ONLY if there’s gluten involved) or dirtying up a million little bowls and spoons. Easy as cake muffins!

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The best part is that, despite their considerably healthy list of ingredients and their lack of flour, these muffins are not lacking in flavor or texture! They have a wonderful soft, dense-yet-springy texture and are smooth and rich. The peanut butter/chocolate/banana flavors really shine through, and the muffins are full of flavor but not overly sweet. They were a huge hit in our house for both the gluten-free eater (my mom) and all the other eaters. They were so popular, in fact, that I had to take my mother aside and let her in on my little secret: I had snatched a few muffins from the communal container and hidden them away in a tupperware in the freezer. That way she could snack on them whenever she saw fit, safe from all other muffin-eaters. If you feel the need to hide away a few of these muffins for yourself, you won’t see me judging you!!

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Flourless Chocolate-Peanut Butter-Banana Muffins

1 cup mashed banana (from about 2 medium-large bananas)

1 cup creamy peanut butter

1/4 cup honey or agave nectar

2 tablespoons brown sugar

1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

2 large eggs

1 tablespoon ground flaxseed (optional)

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup chocolate chips (optional)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Grease or line a 12-cup muffin tin.

Mix together all of the ingredients in a large bowl until well-combined. Divide evenly among muffin cups, filling about 3/4 of the way. Bake for 5 minutes, then decrease oven temperature to 350 degrees. Bake for an additional 10-15 minutes, or until the muffin tops spring back when lightly touched and an inserted toothpick comes out clean.

Cool in the muffin tins for 15 minutes, then run a knife around the edges of each muffin and carefully remove to a cooling rack. Store the muffins in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

(Recipe inspired by Averie Cooks and Detoxinista)

Whole Wheat Zucchini Chocolate Chip Muffins

IMG_8156Is anyone else out there in utter shock that it’s already August? The sun is setting just a bit later every night, the first ripe blackberries of the season are appearing on the wild bushes all over my island, and yesterday I came home from a two-day trip to find my vegetable crisper overflowing with zucchini. It’s common knowledge that this is the time of year when every garden-owner is up to their ears in zucchini. Although my family doesn’t have a garden of our own we happen to be the lucky neighbors of a fantastic (and generous) gardener who likes to share. And who happens to be up in her ears in zucchini, of course. Works for me!

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While I love zucchini in many of its savory forms, including stuffed zucchini, grilled zucchini, roasted zucchini, you name it, I am of course partial to using it in my baking. It adds so much moisture, texture, vitamins and nutrients to baked goods without making them taste like a salad, and it’s so easy to use. Just pull out your cheese grater (or food processor) and shred away. Shredded zucchini can be frozen for later use, which is a definite plus for those overwhelmed zucchini-growers, but my zucchini stock never makes it that far. Not with my baking addiction being as it is.

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First up on the zucchini list were Whole Wheat Zucchini Chocolate Chip Muffins. Usually when I make muffins (with a few exceptions, of course) I like to make them relatively healthy so that I can feel just a bit less guilty while serving them for breakfast. So naturally, there’s nearly a cup of chocolate chips in this recipe. Hah. But aside from the much-needed dose of dark chocolate (which I totally condone, even at breakfast), these are nearly guilt-free. They contain NO butter or oil, instead relying on applesauce, eggs, and zucchini to keep them moist and hold them together. There’s only 1/3 cup of refined sugar in the whole batch, and the nutritional content is boosted further with the addition of whole wheat flour and, of course, zucchini. Orange zest and cinnamon serve to give the muffins wonderful flavor in a healthy way, and while these are plenty sweet they taste like real food, not like the sugary cupcakey muffins that so many of us are used to.

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If you need a way to use up a bit of zucchini, definitely add these to your list. I mean, who wouldn’t want to eat zucchini in the form of a tender, flavorful, considerably healthy muffin containing a hint of fresh orange zest and warm cinnamon? And did I mention that every bite contains rich dark chocolate? That alone should have you running to the kitchen right now!

Whole Wheat Zucchini Chocolate Chip Muffins

Makes about 12 standard-size muffins or a 9″x5″ loaf*

2 cups white whole wheat flour (or 1 cup all-purpose and 1 cup whole wheat)

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/3 cup brown sugar, lightly packed

1 teaspoon grated orange zest

1/3 cup honey or molasses (I used a mixture of both)

1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce (or vegetable oil)

2 large eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 cups shredded, unpeeled zucchini (from about 1 medium zucchini)

3/4 cup dark chocolate chips

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners or spray well with baking spray.

In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon. Set aside.

Place the brown sugar in a medium bowl. Add in the orange zest and use your fingers to incorporate it into the sugar. When the mixture is well-combined and fragrant, whisk in the honey or molasses, applesauce, eggs, and vanilla until smooth. Gently stir the flour mixture into the wet ingredients, mixing just until no flour streaks remain. Stir in the shredded zucchini and chocolate chips.

Scoop the batter into prepared muffin cups, filling each about 3/4 of the way. Bake for 20-24 minutes or until tops bounce back when touched and an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Let the muffins cool for 5 minutes in the tins, then remove to a cooling rack. Store leftover muffins in an air-tight container at room temperature.

*To make zucchini bread, pour the batter into a greased and floured 9″x5″ loaf pan. Smooth the top and bake for 50-60 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 15 minutes before inverting onto a cooling rack, then allow the bread to cool completely before slicing.

(Recipe adapted from King Arthur Flour)

Lemon-Berry Muffins with Cream Cheese Filling

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Happy July 5th, everyone! I hope you all had a fun and safe 4th of July yesterday, whether your day was filled with sunshine, parades, picnics, friends, fireworks, or all of the above.

Before heading downtown for our annual parade yesterday, I decided to start the morning off with a sweet treat to celebrate. Lemon-Berry Muffins with Cream Cheese Filling fit the bill nicely: tender, sweet, lemony muffins bursting with fresh juicy berries and containing a surprise pocket of lemon-cream cheese filling. To make the muffins more festive I loaded them with a mixture of blueberries, strawberries, and raspberries and figured that the cream cheese filling qualified as the “white” part of my red-white-and-blue color scheme. Sure, the cream cheese was hidden in the center, so the color scheme was more like red-blue-and-muffiny brown, but who’s complaining? For all intents and purposes, they were red-white-and-blue. Okay? Okay.

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Although the muffins themselves are delicious with a soft, moist crumb; a hint of cinnamon, vanilla, and almond flavors; a fresh citrus zing from the lemon; and a triad of sweet, juicy berries, they’re made even better with the secret filling. One bite in and you’ll encounter a tiny pocket of sweet lemony cream cheese that takes these muffins from good to great!

In my muffins I chose to use half whole-wheat flour and half all-purpose to give them a little more heft and fiber. The recipe below calls for only all-purpose flour, but it’s up to you. Same goes for the type of berries, extracts, spices, etc. Like many of my recipes, this one is highly adaptable!

Bake up a batch of these Lemon-Berry Muffins as a special treat one of these mornings! In no time at all you can be enjoying a warm, fresh-out-of-the-oven muffin for breakfast or brunch. Be sure to watch for people’s reactions as they discover the sweet surprise filling. Some surprises are not so good (like the surprise that would have occurred had I not realized in the nick of time that I was starting to pour peppermint extract into my measuring spoon rather than vanilla) but this surprise is definitely a nice one! Unless of course you happen to dislike sweet lemony cream cheese stuffed inside a tender lemon-berry muffin. But that would be just plain silly.

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Lemon-Berry Muffins with Cream Cheese Filling

Makes 9 standard-sized muffins

1 & 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 cup granulated sugar

Grated zest of 1 large lemon (about 2 teaspoons)

1/3 cup milk

1 large egg

1/4 cup canola oil

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon almond extract (optional)

1 cup fresh berries, rinsed and chopped (I used 1/3 cup each of strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries)

Coarse sugar, for sprinkling

Cream Cheese Filling:

3 tablespoons cream cheese, softened

1 teaspoon grated lemon zest

1 tablespoon granulated sugar

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line or grease 9 cups of a 12-cup muffin tin; set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. In a smaller bowl, use your fingers to incorporate the lemon zest into the sugar until fragrant. Whisk the lemon-sugar into the flour mixture.

In another bowl, whisk together the milk, oil, egg, vanilla, and almond extract until smooth. Using a rubber spatula, fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients just until incorporated. Be careful not to over-mix. Gently fold the berries into the batter, which will be thick.

To make the cream cheese filling, stir together the cream cheese, lemon zest, and sugar in a small bowl until smooth.

Fill each of the 9 prepared muffin cups about halfway with batter. Drop about 1 teaspoonful of the cream cheese mixture onto the batter in each cup. Then divide the remaining batter among the muffin cups, carefully covering the cream cheese center. Sprinkle the muffin tops with coarse sugar if desired. (I also topped each with a raspberry.)

Bake for 17-20 minutes or until tops are set and edges are golden-brown. Let the muffins cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then remove to a cooling rack.

(Recipe adapted from Two Peas and Their Pod)

Banana Oat Flour Muffins (Gluten-free!)

 

IMG_3860Being a creature of habit, I eat almost the same breakfast every single day: oatmeal. I love it for being quick, easy, healthy, wholesome, delicious, inexpensive, and incredibly versatile when it comes to add-ins. That’s a whole lot of plus factors for one single food! Even though I almost always eat oatmeal in the mornings, I like to mix things up when it comes to toppings. Some days I go for chopped apple, cinnamon, and a drizzle of maple syrup, while other days I’m in the mood for classic blueberries & honey, the combo that I always went for when I was little. I love adding raisins, chunks of pear, sliced strawberries, really any type of fruit! My favorite combo, however, is diced banana, cinnamon, and nutmeg. The hot oatmeal warms the banana and you end up with a bowl of hot, sweet, warmly spiced deliciousness. I know, I know, I’m weird. What can I say, I like my oatmeal! 🙂

On the busiest of busy mornings, even oatmeal can be too time-consuming. That’s where this wonderful little recipe comes in! These Banana Oat Flour Muffins are basically a grab-and-go version of oatmeal: chock full of hearty oats and oat flour, a splash of milk, and some add-ins/flavorings of your choice. That’s it!! I made these without any sugar at all (not counting the banana and raisins) and they were still plenty sweet in my mind. Especially if you’re enjoying these for breakfast, the extra sweetness really doesn’t seem necessary. As far as the other ingredients go, just use your favorite oatmeal additions! I of course went for my favorite banana/cinnamon/nutmeg combo, along with a little almond flavoring, but the possibilities are endless: try using unsweetened applesauce in place of the banana, vanilla extract instead of the almond, any type of dried fruit instead of the raisins, or a little peanut butter. You could add a couple tablespoons of cocoa powder for an extra-delicious chocolate version, too! Maybe I’ll experiment with a cocoa/peanut butter/banana edition the next time I make these….and there will definitely be a next time!

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Oatmeal-lovers and muffin-lovers alike are bound to LOVE these babies! The muffins also freeze very well, so you can make a big batch and simply grab one out of the freezer in the morning, nuke it in the microwave for a few seconds, and enjoy a quick, healthy, yummy breakfast on-the-go. What more can you ask for?

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Banana Oat Flour Muffins

2 cups oat flour

1/2 cup old-fashioned oats

2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

Pinch of ground nutmeg

1 large ripe banana, mashed

1 cup milk (I used vanilla almond milk)

1/2 tsp almond extract or vanilla extract (optional)

1/4 cup brown sugar*

1/2 cup raisins

Topping:

1 Tbs brown sugar, packed

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Grease a 12-cup muffin tin or line with paper muffin cups. Set aside.

Whisk together the oat flour, oats, baking powder, cinnamon and nutmeg in a large bowl. In a smaller bowl, mix together the mashed banana, milk, almond extract, and brown sugar until well-combined. Pour the wet ingredients into the oat mixture and stir until just combined. Fold in the raisins. The batter will be thick.

Scoop the batter into prepared muffin tins. In a small bowl, mix together the 1 tablespoon of brown sugar and 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon. Sprinkle over the muffins.  Bake for 12-15 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean and muffin tops bounce back when lightly pressed. Let cool for 5 minutes, then transfer muffins onto a cooling rack. Serve.

Leftovers can be frozen or stored in an airtight container at room temperature.

*You can make these muffins sugar-free by simply leaving out the brown sugar. I made these with no sugar at all except that from the banana, vanilla almond milk, and raisins, and they turned out delicious. However, if you aren’t used to eating less-sweet muffins, I would recommend including the brown sugar.

(Recipe adapted from Happy Herbivore)