Category Archives: Dessert Muffins

Candycane & Cocoa Muffins

After Christmas, I invented a fun muffin that helped me get rid of all the leftover candy canes:

This muffin’s pock-marked surface was caused by all the candy cane bits in the batter that melted away as the muffins baked. For a smoother surface, you can substitute peppermint extract and still get the warm, cozy flavor of candy canes and hot cocoa! 🙂

Here’s the recipe:

1.5 cups whole wheat flour

1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa

1 tablespoon baking powder

3-4 candy canes, crushed to very small bits (can substitute 1/2 tsp peppermint extract, added to liquid mixture)

1 cup brown sugar

2 large eggs

1 cup milk

6 tablespoons canola oil

Combine dry ingredients and set aside. Combine wet ingredients, then pour them into the dry mixture. Mix until just combined, then bake in well-greased mini muffin cups at 400 degrees for 8-11 minutes. Top with candy cane powder (the residue you’ll find in your chopper/food processor after crushing the candy canes).

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Pineapple Upsidedown Muffins

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With brown sugar in the batter and pineapple chunks in the center, these muffins taste so incredibly dessert-like that my kids devoured them without stopping to notice the coarse whole grain flour and precious little oil I used to make them! They gobbled them up so quickly that next time, I will have to double the batch if I want any leftovers to freeze for quick breakfasts on-the-run!

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Here’s the recipe:

Pineapple Upsidedown Muffins

2 cups  fresh-ground whole wheat flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 large egg

3/4 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup canola oil

2/3 cup buttermilk (or regular milk mixed w/ 2 teaspoons vinegar and left to curdle for 5 min)

1 teaspoon vanilla extract (or 2 tsp imitation)

1 egg white, beaten until stiff

1 cup pineapple chunks, drained.

dscn1296Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl. In a smaller bowl ,whisk together all remaining ingredients EXCEPT the egg white. Add wet ingredients to the large bowl and stir until just combined. Fold in the egg white until just combined.

Drop batter into canola-sprayed mini muffin cups using a mini cookie scoop. Press one pineapple chunk into the center of each muffin, then top with another half scoop of batter. Bake at 375 degrees for 8-10 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

 

Raspberries N’ Cream Muffins (Whole Grain)

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The cream cheese batter for these muffins makes such a smooth-textured muffin that kids will never notice the whole grain flour!

Instead of white flour, I used a cracked, seven-grain cereal:

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You can buy Bob’s Red Mill seven grain cereal at most grocery stores (cereal and baking aisles) or you can buy it here. You can then grind this cereal in your home blender, if the grains are already cracked, like this:

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Just toss it in the blender and blend until it looks like flour!

Here’s the recipe:

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2/3 cup cream cheese, softened

1/3 cup canola oil

1 and 1/2 cups sugar

2 egg whites

1 egg

1 and 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

2 cups fresh-ground, 7-grain flour

1 tsp. baking soda

1/2 cup buttermilk (or 1/2 cup regular milk with 1.5 tsp vinegar; let sit 5 minutes)

1/2 cup Raspberry Nuggets*

Beat cream cheese, oil, and sugar until fluffy. Beat in egg whites, egg, and vanilla. Combine dry ingredients separately, then fold into cream cheese mixture with buttermilk and raspberry nuggets.

Bake in canola-sprayed muffin tins at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes (mini-muffins) or 18-24 minutes (regular muffins).

These muffins are more of a dessert because they contain cream cheese and sugar and taste like cheesecake! But as far as desserts go, they’re ultra-healthy—how many cheesecakes have *you* eaten that are made from whole grains? 🙂

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dscn1200*I used raspberry nuggets for the mini-muffins pictured here because I make them in large batches to freeze. Whenever I’m going on the road with the kids, I just grab a bag and go, and I can’t have real raspberries thawing and getting raspberry juice all over my kids’ clothes. You can use real raspberries, instead, though.

Chocolate Zucchini Muffin Tarts

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This Valentine’s Day, I resolved to help the environment by NOT buying those little paper Valentines for my children to distribute amongst their classmates. You know–the ones that they all pass around at school, after which the kids just rip them open, pull out the candy inside, and toss the card.

Tonight, instead, we all made Chocolate Zucchini Muffin Tarts and frosted them for the girls to take to school and give them out to their friends. Sure, they’re frosted, but they were made in mini-muffin pans, so kids will only get one small mouthful of sugar–sure beats the other junk they’re getting elsewhere! 🙂

Here is the recipe (thanks to Ice Cream for giving this to me!)dscn1165

6 Tbsp. Cocoa Powder

3 eggs

2 C. sugar

1/2 C. canola oil

1/2 c. apple sauce

2 C. Grated Zucchini (grated small, then squeezed in paper towels to remove excess water)
MIX ALL TOGETHER, then add:

2 C. Whole Wheat Flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
***Mix quickly and drop into cooking spray-coated mini muffin tins and bake for eight to twelve minutes, or until inserted toothpick comes out clean. 

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These chocolate zucchini muffins are very healthy, but as I mentioned above, we desecrated their healthiness with a little Valentine’s Day makeover!