Twice a month my husband has class all day on Saturdays. So that leaves me and the kids to do as we wish. I like to try to include at least one “fun” activity that we all enjoy (besides the obligatory grocery shopping, laundry and cleaning). This past Saturday, baking these Whole Wheat Muffins won the vote.
Muffins are fun because they are individually portioned and let’s face it, they look like cupcakes! These little gems are crammed full of whole grains, vegetables, nuts and fruits and make a great addition to breakfast, lunch, dinner or snack. I know because we ate them for each meal.
These whole-wheat muffins are not the typical dried-out variety and are extremely versatile. You can use any type of fruit puree; applesauce, pumpkin, banana- the choice is yours. As for add-ins, the sky really is the limit. I used whole cranberries (much to my oldest’s disapproval), walnuts and dates, but you could add any type of dried fruit or nut (or just leave them plain).
Just a head’s up. You might want to double the recipe. These 12 muffins were gone within 12 hours at my house. My oldest (age 4) ate 2 with lunch, 2 for snack and 1 with supper. While he was eating his first muffin he enthusiastically said, “Mom, these muffins are AMAZING, but you put cranberries in them! Why did you DO that?” (as he picked out each and every berry). Although it seemed that the tart cranberries couldn’t even slow him down.
Making them is simple. Mix together whole-wheat flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ground ginger and salt in a medium bowl. Set aside.
In a large bowl, mix (with an electric mixer) the butter (you can also use coconut oil), honey, egg and vanilla extract until well-combined. The batter will be thick and have a consistency closer to cookie dough. Don’t worry, that is how it is supposed to be.
Stir in the fruit puree (I used pumpkin), grated carrots and add-ins (I used whole cranberries, dates and walnuts). Your batter will still be quite thick. Divide the batter evenly into 12 lined muffin cups. The muffins don’t rise much, so don’t hesitate to fill them up!
Whole Wheat Muffins
Makes 12 muffins
All you need:
1½ cups whole-wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup butter (1 stick), softened (but not melted)
½ cup honey
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup fruit puree (applesauce, canned pumpkin or mashed banana)
¾ cup shredded carrots (I used a cheese grater)
1 cup add-ins (nuts, seeds, dried fruit, cranberries)
All you do:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a muffin pan with paper cups and set aside.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger and salt.
3. In a large mixing bowl mix butter, honey, egg and vanilla together using a mixer on medium speed.
4. Slowly add the flour mixture until well combined. The batter will be thick and resemble cookie dough.
5. Using a rubber scraper, fold in the fruit puree, carrots and any add-ins.
6. Divide the batter evenly among the muffin cups. Bake for 22 to 24 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean and muffins are beginning to turn golden brown on top. Enjoy!