Yummy Pumpkin Muffins

IMG_4234There’s nothing better than a warm pumpkin muffin, fresh out of the oven, with a nice bit of butter on it, melting as the muffin melts in your mouth with that first delectable bite. I love pumpkin and that is one of the many reasons I love this time of year. In the Fall, pumpkins and pumpkin recipes and dishes abound.

Whether it be preparing for the Thanksgiving feast or the events at Halloween there are pumpkins everywhere. And I am quite happy to take advantage of this and enjoy as much pumpkin as I can. There is so much you can do with pumpkin from soups to pies, cheesecakes, even drinks like martinis and lattes! (Who else can’t wait for Fall so we can experience once again the delectable flavors of a pumpkin spice latte)?

IMG_4224Muffins are one of the quickest and easiest ways to use pumpkin. They are great for snacks, to put in lunches and easy to freeze, if they last that long. My kids love muffins of any kind and will gladly gobble up the pumpkin ones just as quick as the strawberry rhubarb, apple, blueberry, etc. Of course I tend to make my favorites (or honestly what is in abundance at our house, for instance earlier in the Fall we had all the apples from our apple tree).

Over the past couple of years I have adjusted my pumpkin muffin recipe, passed down from my Mom to make it sugar free and dairy free, meeting our new dietary choices. I have IMG_4237also been experimenting with gluten free recipes as well and therefore have found some good gluten free pumpkin muffins as well. (Usually I still need to do a little adjusting with the sugar, but it has become second nature now and is a quick and easy substitution).

So I make both at times, as my kids will eat either, though I am finding I am moving more towards gluten free only because I am noticing how my body is feeling after gluten sometimes (which is not so good). And today I am sharing both recipes with you. Both are equally easy and delicious, so it is simply your preference or dietary needs to decide which one to try (You could, like me, make both).

Gluten Free Pumpkin Muffins

1/2 c. tapioca flour

1/2 c. garbanzo flourIMG_4225

1/2 c. brown rice flour

1 c. coconut sugar

3 tbsp. flaxseed

1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. nutmeg

2 tsp. cinnamonIMG_4220

1/2 tsp. sea salt

1 c. pumpkin puree

1/2 c. safflower oil

2 eggs

1/2 c. dates or raisins

In a medium mixing bowl, mix dry ingredients thoroughly (flours, coconut sugar, flaxseed, baking soda, salt and spices). In another bowl, mix wet ingredients together (pumpkin puree, safflower oil, eggs). Make a well in the center of dry ingredients and add wet ingredients to dry. Stir until just combined, then mix in dates or raisins.

Line muffin tin with muffins cups or grease with coconut oil. Fill each cup. Bake at 350F for 20-25 minutes.

Makes 12 muffins

Pumpkin Muffins

1 3/4c. all purpose flourIMG_4223

1/2 c. coconut sugar

3 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. sea salt

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 tsp. cloves

pinch ginger

2/3 c. almond milkIMG_4233

1/2 c. pumpkin

1/3 c. olive oil

1 egg

1/2 c. dates or raisins

In a medium sized bowl, beat together egg, pumpkin and oil. Add almond milk. Sift together dry ingredients and add to mixture. Mix in dates or raisins.

Line muffin tin with muffin cup or grease with coconut oil. Fill muffin cup and bake at 400F for 25-30 minutes.

Makes 12 muffins

Do you have a favorite pumpkin muffin recipe?

Sugar Free Banana Bread

A traditional favorite in most homes, banana bread is a great way to use up those overripe bananas, turning them into something delicious! I have tried a few banana bread recipes from the one my Mom makes to one from my roommates in university and all have been delicious. But when I discovered this banana bread recipe I was in heaven! It was the most moist and the best banana bread that I had ever had. Containing no sugar, sweetened with applesauce and honey, and a boost of flaxseed, this is one healthy, but extremely yummy banana bread.

When I make it at our house, it never lasts more than a day because the kids and I gobble it up 2 or 3 pieces at a time.

I use my own *applesauce and chocolate, both homemade and of which I usually have on hand. The twins enjoy applesauce and cinnamon each morning at breakfast and I make up plain chocolate pieces that I keep in the fridge or freezer for whenever we need our chocolate fix.

Though you may have a favorite banana bread recipe, give this one a try, you won’t be disappointed!

*to make the applesauce I simply slice and core 6 apples, boil them on the stove until soft, then drain the water and blend the apples in the blender until smooth. I do not peel the apples as the skin contains lots of vitamins that you lose when you peel them and blends up so small that you don’t ┬ánotice it in the sauce.

Banana Bread

1 1/2 c. whole wheat flour

flaxseed

1 1/4 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1 tbsp cinnamon

1 tbsp ground flaxseed

pinch of sea salt

3 ripe mashed bananas

2 egg whites

1/4 c. unsweetened applesauce

1/2 c. honey

1/4 c. flaxseed oil

1/3 c. chopped dark chocolate

chopped walnuts, optional

In a medium bowl combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, flaxseed and salt.

In a large bowl beat bananas until smooth. Add egg whites and mix. Gradually mix in applesauce, honey and flaxseed oil. Mix dry ingredients into banana mixture. Stir in chocolate.

Grease a 9×5 inch loaf pan with Earth Balance Vegan spread. Pour batter into pan and bake for 45 minutes or until cake tester when inserted comes out clean.