Saturday, February 20, 2010

Magnificant Muffins

Truth be told, I love to snack. I love everything about it. I think it is because I have a problem sitting still, and you can snack standing! I could snack all day and never eat a meal. I see where my 4 year old gets it...

Anyway, I wanted to share with you all some of my favorite muffins recipes. They are perfect to munch on with your morning coffee, a mid day slump snack, or with green tea before bed. Some of these I like to eat before I run as well. They give you energy without sitting like a brick in your tummy. The kids love these too and they are packed with good for you things in a sneaky manner. I'd rather they snack on these than prepackaged granola bars, snack crackers, and the like. Another good trick is I make a batch in mini muffin tins...they love popping them in their mouths. Or throw a few chocolate chips in. Over the next few weeks I am going to try out some new "power" muffin recipes so I'll forward on the ones that meet my (and my kids) approval.

Carrot Muffins
(from Gourmet Mag with some changes)

2 cups all purpose flour (I do 1 cup white and 1 cup whole wheat flour)
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
1/4 pound carrots
1/2 cup pecans
1/2 cup raisins
3 large eggs
3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/4 cup canola oil
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 Granny Smith apple (or try a honeycrisp)

Preheat oven to 350°F. and oil eighteen 1/2-cup muffin cups.

Into a large bowl sift together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt and whisk in sugar. Coarsely shred enough carrots to measure 2 cups and chop pecans. Add shredded carrots and pecans to flour mixture with raisins and toss well.

In a bowl whisk together eggs, applesauce, oil, and vanilla. Peel and core apple and coarsely shred. Stir shredded apple into egg mixture and add to flour mixture, stirring until batter is just combined well. Divide batter among muffin cups, filling them three fourths full, and bake in middle of oven until puffed and a tester comes out clean, 15 to 20 minutes.

Cool muffins in cups on racks 5 minutes before turning out onto racks to cool completely. Muffins keep in an airtight container at room temperature 5 days

Morning Glory Muffins
(from Cooking Light)

Cooking spray
1 cup whole wheat flour (about 4 3/4 ounces)
1/2 cup all-purpose flour (about 2 1/4 ounces)
1 cup regular oats
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon wheat bran
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup plain fat-free yogurt
1 cup mashed ripe banana (about 2)
1 large egg
1 cup chopped pitted dates (i use raisins here instead)
3/4 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup chopped dried pineapple (i don't put this in)
3 tablespoons ground flaxseed (about 2 tablespoons whole)

Preheat oven to 350°.
Place 18 muffin cups liners in muffin cups; coat liners with cooking spray.

Lightly spoon flours into dry measuring cups, and level with a knife. Combine flours and next 5 ingredients (through salt) in a large bowl; stir with a whisk. Make a well in center of mixture. Combine yogurt, banana, and egg; add to flour mixture, stirring just until moist. Fold in dates, walnuts, and pineapple. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups. Sprinkle evenly with flaxseed. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes or until muffins spring back when touched lightly in center. Remove muffins from pans immediately; cool on a wire rack.

Pumpkin Cranberry Muffins
(modified from Cooking Light)

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (about 6 3/4 ounces)
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 cup canned pumpkin
1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 large egg
1 cup cranberries (or 1/2 cup Craisins although i think these are too sweet)
Cooking spray

Preheat oven to 375°.

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, baking soda, and next 5 ingredients (though cloves); stir well with a whisk.

Combine granulated sugar and next 5 ingredients (through egg) in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended (about 3 minutes). Add flour mixture to sugar mixture; beat at low speed just until combined. Fold in cranberries.

Place 12 paper muffin cup liners in muffin cups; coat liners with cooking spray. Spoon batter into prepared cups. Bake at 375° for 25 minutes or until muffins spring back when touched lightly in center. Remove muffins from pan immediately; place on a wire rack.

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