I know I have posted a lot of recipes lately and really do intend to do a more informative post very soon but this experiment turned out so well that I had to share!
I decided that I wanted to make a muffin or cupcake without any sweetener – that meant no honey, maple syrup, rice malt syrup or coconut sugar. I found this yummy sounding recipe from Eat Nourishing but it had a cup of honey in it. I am not a huge fan of the taste of honey in baking and generally substitute for rice malt syrup but am trying to follow the GAPS protocol for a while which means that honey is the only sweetener allowed. 1 cup seemed like a HUGE amount.
So, after the success of my banana bread that was sweetened only with ripe bananas, I decided to try the same thing with these muffins. I also wanted to increase the berry flavour and add a bit more sweetness so I used Acai Berry Blend from Nutra Organics. This stuff is delicious in yoghurt, smoothies or my homemade instant ice cream and my 2 year old eats it straight from the jar!
I was unsure how well received these muffins would be but my 2 oldest kids love them as does hubby (and me). The little one will eat them if I use the apple and pear option but doesn’t like the banana ones. We have named them breakfast muffins because I let the kids have them for breakfast! They are packed with protein from the coconut flour and eggs, good fats from the coconut oil. Plenty of nutrients and antioxidants from the cacao, acai berry and fruit and have absolutely no nasties (I include gluten in this statement)! MUCH better choice than toast or cereal.
3 smallish very ripe bananas or 2 apples and a pear (pealed)
1/4 avocado (optional – anywhere from a tablespoon to 1/2 an avo works. It adds in some more good fats and changes the texture slightly.)
1/2 cup coconut flour
1/2 cup raw cacao
6 free range eggs (room temperature)
1/2 cup coconut oil melted (or melted butter)
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste (or 2 teaspoons vanilla extract)
Fresh or frozen raspberries
If using a food processor, chuck all the ingredients in an whizz until smooth.
If mixing by hand:
Mash bananas well with a fork / peel and grate apples and pear
Mash avocado into this
Add in all other ingredients except for the raspberries and mix until well combined with no lumps
Spoon into muffin tray (mine made 10 – 12 large muffins)
Pop a few raspberries into each muffin.
Bake at 160°c for 20 – 25 mins until they are firm to the touch. Be careful not to let them burn.
Note: These are quite rich flavoured. My family is used to very dark chocolate and eating sugar free. If you are new to this way of eating you might want to use only 1 or 2 bananas and use some honey/maple syrup/rice malt syrup to start (maybe 1/4 – 1/2) and gradually reduce the sweetener and increase the bananas. Also, if you are not a dark chocolate fan you could try using less cacao.
Update: I just made these with 1/4 cup raw cacao and 1/4 cup berry choc chunk powder (and no acai berry as it is in the berry choc chunk already) and they were really yummy. Yes, we have almost the entire range of Nutra Organics products in our house!
I would love to hear what variations you try and how they worked out. Leave them in the comments section below.
Store in an airtight container in the fridge and they will last several days. They will freeze well too.
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