Friday, August 23, 2013

Healthy & Moist Allergy/Gluten Free (& Vegan) Anytime Muffins

One day, over a year ago, while looking for a great muffin recipe I came across this recipe for Healthy Power Muffins, over at Go Dairy Free. I fell in love with it and Ninja and I ate it as is for the longest time.

After a while I wanted to see if I could get it a bit lighter and moister, so I began tinkering with the recipe to get it to my liking. Now don’t get me wrong, while I believe I was a chef in another life, I am NOT one of those people who can easily manipulate a recipe to success. In fact I was downright horrified to make any changes; Lord knows that allergy free products are far too expensive to waste.

But…somehow, someway I got up the nerve. First I worked on the moistness. I took a ‘lil somethin’ I learned on some other recipe for something altogether different and added it in. SUCCESS!

Then, I tackled the density. I did tons of research on flours all over again, in the attempt to see how I might tweak my go-to pancake recipe. And ding, ding, ding…another idea. Once again I added a 'lil somethin' and this time taking away a 'lil somethin' too. Aaaaaand…SUCCESS!

That was it...three modifications and I now have the muffin I absolutely love to eat. It is lighter on my palate and it is not only more moist, but it stays moister longer. That sounds like a commercial doesn’t it, “It stays moister longer,” LOL! But seriously, it does.

And so, the recipe.

Healthy & Moist Allergy/Gluten Free (& Vegan) Anytime Muffins

  • 3/4 c. Buckwheat flour
  • 1/2 c. Teff flour
  • 1/4 c. Tapioca flour
  • 1 t. ground cinnamon
  • 1 t. baking powder
  • 1/2 t. baking soda
  • 1/4 t. sea salt (can use plain salt)
  • 3 Medium-sized, ripe mashed bananas
  • 1/4 c. Organic unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/4 c. coconut oil (or your favorite baking oil)
  • 1/4 c. honey or maple syrup (or desired sweetness)
  • 1 t. vanilla extract
  • 1/3 c. Hemp seeds
  • 1/3 c. Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips 
  1. Preheat your oven to 375┬║F and grease a muffin pan (can also use silicone muffin cups)
  1. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the buckwheat flour, tapioca flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  1. In a mixing bowl, blend the banana, applesauce, coconut oil, honey (or maple syrup), and vanilla (it is okay to have some small banana lumps).
  1. Fold the flour mixture into the wet ingredients, stirring until just combined.
  1. Stir in the hemp seeds and chocolate chips.
  1. Pour the batter into the muffin pan, and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until slightly browned on top (insert a toothpick to make sure it comes out clean, keeping in mind that the melted chocolate chips may show on the stick).
  1. Cool in the pan for 5 minutes and then place on a baking rack until cool (although I begin gobbling them right after the 5 minutes!).
Don't tell anyone but I gobble two of these babies down straight out of the oven. Don't worry, you will see why soon (and I won't tell on you either).

This is what a ripe banana looks like. Exactly!! Like the ones you usually throw away (shame on you). In the words of Jace (my lovely three year old toddler, stop doing that!!! Those are the best ones for baking! They smell and taste horrible as is, but boy oh boy do they make for some rich sweet baked goodies. Trust me. I wouldn’t steer you wrong ;-). Don't fret if you don't have bananas this ripe, just use what you have.

Here's a tip. Mix up a few batches of the dry ingredients only (except for the hemp seeds and chocolate chips, which are folded in at the end), place them in a Ziploc bag and store them in the fridge. That way "anytime" you have a hankering for some of these great muffins, it'll only take you moments to whip them up. I keep at least three batches on hand at all times. So here’s what I do:
  1. Take out three quart sized Ziploc bags and label them “Muffin Mix” or whatever you want to call it. It’s harder to label them once they are full.
  2. Begin measuring the dry ingredients, filling each bag as you go. In order to stay organized I spread the bags far enough apart that I don’t get confused. I put the same ingredient in each of the bags before moving on to the next ingredient (like Buckwheat flour, buckwheat flour, buckwheat flour…then on to teff flour).
  3. Give the bag a good 'ole shake, shake, shake.
  4. Zip them up and pop them in the fridge.
That way when you gotta have those muffins, they are only a few wet ingredients away!

As you mix your flour just make sure you don’t get as carried away as my Little Ninja does as he shakes the bags for mommy. But just in case you do, please post a pic and give us all a laugh for the day.

I call these "Anytime" muffins because we find ourselves eating them, well, anytime. Breakfast...muffin. Dinner...muffin. Wednesday...muffin. I'm happy...muffin. It's raining...muffin. I want some coffee...muffin. Thomas the Train fell off the track...muffin. Even when my toddler begs for an impromptu birthday party months after his actual birthday, full with candles, singing, presents and all (hence the photo above). But you get the point; these are truly ANYTIME muffins, people.


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