***Updated to correct my silly mistakes! (Sorry about that! Oops!)***
When you see the list drone on about gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, egg-free, nut-free….do your eyes roll back in your head, too? Ok, good! I’m glad I’m not the only one. Well, maybe my eyes roll for a different reason & that’s usually because I want to add TASTE-free to the list! Am I right?
My sweet sister was a foodie. Not just a foodie, but a successful food blogger who had an amazing ability to take a recipe from mundane to mouth-watering. Watching her process through all the different recipes & work out how to make things taste amazing was quite a sight to see. I learned so much from her!
One thing she taught me was that allergy friendly doesn’t have to mean disgusting. So this is my quest! In our extended family & friends we have quite a list of allergies to contend with so it is fairly mind-blowing. Are you ready for this list?
- sugar (did you know that was possible? Me either.)
….I feel like I’m forgetting something…..????
Anyhow, so the adventures of birthday cake, Japanese food, simple breakfast, & even soup are not quite so mindless & easy. There’s no running to the store to grab something last minute & there is no premade birthday cakes (that I have ever found) that are safe for all the littles. Did I mention that I work for a health company & that we are really big on eating clean? Add that into the mix & you know that we do a lot of cooking around here!
My sister-in-law shared this recipe with me & they are YUMMY but…they are green. Have you ever tried to get a picky eating 3 yr old to eat a green muffin? Yeah, it’s not gonna happen. I’ve tried! Also, the original recipe, although amazing, had a few too many steps for this busy mama…simple is my groove! If this was going to work, it was going to need some tweaking. After several batches, I have settled on a new favorite. (I may or may not have 5 or 6 sitting next to my computer right now. *wipes away crumbs*)
Without further ado, I present the Chocolate Smoothie Muffin!
Oh! One warning, the finished batter will have a slightly odd color but it will all work out in the end. Haha! Don’t be afraid!
Chocolate Smoothie Muffins
- 2 cups old-fashioned oats(steel-cut works too!)
- ¼ cup almond meal
- 2 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- dash-1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
- ½ cup coconut sugar or your favorite granulated sugar
- ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder(I like the Trader Joe’s brand)
- ½ cup almond milk
- ¼ cup real maple syrup(NOT the sugary kind!)
- 2 cups packed spinach leaves
- ¼ cup coconut oil
- 2 ripe, large bananas
- 2 eggs(or chia seeds)
- 1 tsp vanilla
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Grease or line a muffin tin.(I use a mini-muffin tin so they are bite-sized)
Put 2 cups of old-fashioned oats in your blender (Vitamix) and blend until the oats achieve the texture of flour. Transfer to a medium mixing bowl (I like to use my Kitchen Aid mixer with the paddle attachment for a good smooth blend).
Add the rest of the dry ingredients to the oat flour. Gently mix until incorporated, set aside.
Add the rest of the ingredients into the blender & blend until smooth & fully incorporated.
Pour wet ingredients to dry mixture and stir to combine (making sure there are NO lumps)!
Fill each well in your muffin tin with batter. Bake for 20-25 minutes(10 minutes for mini-muffins) or until toothpick comes out clean and the top springs back when touched.
- Let cool for about 5 mins to set.
- Almond Meal: You may substitute equal amounts of ground flaxseed or old-fashioned oats (ground into flour).
- Coconut Sugar: You may use any granulated sugar of your choice! I am still learning about sweeteners, but if you wanted to experiment with stevia (or a similar product) I recommend using a variety that is meant to be a 1:1 substitute for granulated sugar. Also, if you don’t want to use the maple syrup, you can use 1/2 cup coconut sugar & reduce the almond meal to 1/4 cup.(This keeps the dry/wet balance)
- Almond milk: you may use any non-dairy milk to keep the recipe dairy free. Or you may use regular milk!
- Coconut Oil: You may substitute vegan butter (like Earth Balance), regular butter, or ghee!
- Eggs: For vegan version substitute the 2 eggs with 2 TBS ground chia seeds and 5 TBS water, let sit while you prepare the dry ingredients.
- Storage: These freeze really well so if you make a large batch & want to save them, just let them cool completely & pop them in an air tight container & freeze them for another day!
- Dress it up! Eat these as is or pair with some coconut whipped cream & fresh berries or serve them hot with ice cream & you have a full blown dessert! Yum-O! (and the kids will never know they are eating spinach!)