Last night I found myself thinking of breakfast options for my kid. Lately, she hasn’t been into eggs, no matter the style, and porridge has been making her cringe. We aren’t serving conventional cereals in my house, and we are all out of yogurt. So what does one do besides pancakes and smoothies? Muffins, of course!
There is no shortage of recipes out there, as you can imagine, and there is a metric ton of recipes that claim to be healthy. However, I spotted some annoying trends in healthy muffin recipes — and there are clearly two schools of thought spotted here — one is “a muffin that claims to be healthy is boring by definition and therefore must be overloaded with sugar and chocolate chips to compensate” and “a muffin that claims to be healthy should be devoid of all joy and should be low-fat, low-sugar, eggless, gluten free, vegan, and feature saw dust and fingernails like texture”. Amidst the mix I found some really seriously weird versions, claiming to be Granny N old school genius recipes, which, strangely enough, featured xylitol, hemp protein powder (really, Granny N?!), apple sauce, and some other exciting ingredients that one might typically find in construction sites and CSI episodes. I was out hunting for neither of these, so I decided to make my own version from scratch.
First of all, forget the “low-fat”. We don’t do that. Healthy fat, yes; low-fat, no. In goes coconut oil. Butter would have done just as nicely, but I didn’t feel like putting all of my remaining defrosted butter into a try-out muffin recipe. Second, forget the 1 cup of white sugar, I have better option — blackstrap molasses — rich dark gooey thing loaded with nutrition. I used half of the usual amount — we are making breakfast, not dessert. The rest was quite easy. I added fresh orange zest, which played very nicely with molasses flavor, organic raisins and a small amount of sunflower and pumpkin seeds for good measure, and it was a done deal. In 40 minutes it was all over.
The aroma of warm molasses was incredible, and quite remarkably easy to fall asleep to. I went to bed satisfied that my kid will receive excellent nutritious breakfast and for once won’t whine over spinach eggs. The kid was excited about molasses for two reasons — it looks like chocolate, and it was heavily mentioned in Little House on the Prairie book by Laura Ingalls Wilder: kids in the book were fed corn bread with molasses as nutritious snack.
If you are unsure about molasses properties, I recommend this article here.
Oatmeal & Molasses Muffins
- 1-1/2 cups white whole wheat or all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup cracked or rolled oats
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup molasses
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 cup coconut oil (butter)
- 1/3 cup raisins
- 1/3 cup seeds (I used a blend of sunflower and pumpkin)
- zest of 1/2 orange
- 1 cup (or a bit more) whole milk
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Grease muffin tin thoroughly
- Sift flour and add all dry ingredients to it in a bowl. Mix well
- Add molasses, lightly beaten eggs and melted coconut oil or butter
- Add 1/2 cup of milk at first and stir very thoroughly until batter is smooth and non-lumpy
- Add raisins, seeds and orange zest at this point and stir again
- Now keep adding milk in small quantities until batter reaches the consistency of pancake batter (thick buttermilk or thin yogurt)
- Distribute batter evenly between muffin tin cups. It should fill the cups to about 2/3 or 3/4 capacity.
- Sprinkle additional seeds on top of the batter just for looks. Yes, I am that superficial
- Bake for about 20-25 minutes, or until knife or toothpick inserted into a muffin come out clean.