Monday, May 4, 2015

Applesauce Quinoa Muffins

We are big fans of quinoa as a side dish here, but sometimes I overestimate what we need and am left with 1 or 2 cups of cooked quinoa for which I have no dinner or lunch plans. When this happens, I fold them into muffins!

I use my Flax Bran Muffin recipe and add some elements from the Applesauce Oatmeal Muffins to come up with something tasty.

This time I used coconut sugar (also known as palm sugar) because I figured the kids would enjoy the toffee quality it brings. I also ground my own soft wheat berries, hence the measurement in grams. I had 1 cup of quinoa and it worked fine, but don't hesitate to make the same recipe using up to 2 cups if that's what you've got. Finally, I used kefir in place of buttermilk, because that's what we've got in the house these days. These muffins rose very high so I think they liked the substitution.


INGREDIENTS
2 eggs
2 cups kefir or buttermilk
1 1/4 to 1 1/2 cups sugar (regular, raw or coconut)
1 cup unsweetened applesauce OR equivalent amount of cooked mashed sweet potato or pumpkin OR grated zucchini)
1/4 cup cooking oil or melted coconut oil (there are approx 13 g coconut oil to the TBSP so 52 g)
2 1/2 cups (300 g) whole wheat pastry flour (if desired, you can substitute 3/4 c. almond meal for 3/4 c flour)
3/4 cup ground flax seed (I use a coffee grinder and keep the whole flax seeds in the freezer)
1 cup oat bran
1 TBSP baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp assorted spices (I do a mix of cinnamon, ginger, cloves or allspice)
1-2 cups cooked quinoa
1 cup chopped nuts (a combination of walnuts and pecans is nice) optional
1/2 TBSP crumble topping per muffin (optional)

DIRECTIONS
  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and prepare two 12-cup muffin tins
  2. In a large mixing bowl, lightly beat the eggs
  3. Add kefir, sugar, oil and applesauce. Stir until mixed.
  4. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, almond meal (if using), flax, oat bran, baking soda, salt and spices
  5. Add the dry ingredients to the wet and stir until just mixed
  6. Stir in the quinoa
  7. Add the nuts and stir briefly
  8. Spoon the batter into the muffin tins (I load them pretty full)
  9. Top each muffin with 1/2 TBSP crumble topping if using
  10. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean (it's usually closer to 20 or even 22 minutes)
These muffins freeze beautifully. I defrost for 1 minute in the microwave and then toast them in the toaster oven on Medium for a crunchy-ish top

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