Strawberry Banana Muffins

These muffins are grain free, sugar free, soy free, oil free, and they can be nut free if you’d like them to be. But, most importantly, they’re not free of flavor; they’re delicious!

Strawberry Banana Muffins

2 c almond meal*

2 medium bananas (very ripe), blended until liquified

1/2 c strawberries, chopped (frozen/thawed is fine)

2 flax eggs (1 flax egg = 1 heaping tbsp flax meal + 1 tbsp warm water)

1 TBSP chia seeds (optional)

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/4 tsp baking soda (This might not be necessary; I added it to neutralize the acid.)

Optional: Stevia or other sweetener to taste

Thoroughly combine dry ingredients. Add wet. Stir to combine. Fold in strawberries. Spoon into muffin tins (or cupcake holders) and bake 12-15 minutes at 350F.

Notes:

Almond Meal: I use almond meal that I create from left-over almond milk pulp. I freeze it until the bags start sliding out of the freezer when I open the door (ha!); then I thaw and dehydrate it. After that, I process it in the food processor until it’s a fine grind. It stores very well in a glass container forever – as far as I know. I’m guessing you could use fresh almond milk pulp for these, too. You might need less flax if your meal is wetter/heavier. Since mine was so dry, I added the extra flax for it’s gelling power.

Almond Fee/Seed Options: If you can’t or don’t want to use almond meal, I’m sure a different nut or seed meal would work; make your own by grinding your favorite nut or seed until forms a fine powder, or use left-over nut or seed pulp from any nut or seed.

Grain Option: Don’t care if your muffins are grain free? Sub out the almond meal for oat flour. Equal parts should work. I would reduce the flax egg down to one, however. And, you may need to adjust (lessen) the cooking time.

Flax Eggs: If you don’t have flax, or don’t want to use flax, I’m sure a chia egg would work well here (or whatever egg substitute you prefer).

Chia Seeds: I like to add chia seeds to my muffins for extra Omega 3’s, especially if I use something high in Omega 6’s (like peanut butter). I also like that they’re high in protein, calcium, iron, fiber and tons of other stuff. Well, high for their size. They’re little powerhouses!

Sweetener: I didn’t add any sweetener, but if your strawberries aren’t sweet enough (of if your bananas aren’t super ripe and sugary sweet), you might want to add a little stevia or your favorite nutritive sweetener. I think coconut sugar would work great in these!

Cooking Time: Don’t be afraid to bake these for a while. The almond meal is pretty wet, so it might take a while to cook. Our oven runs a little cool, so mine took a full 15 minutes (plus). You don’t want there to be much give in the middle if you push on one while it’s in the oven.

Keepin’ it raw? I think these would be great as muffin tops in the dehydrator. On their own, all of the ingredients are considered raw šŸ™‚ If you choose to try this, place a large scoop of mixture on a paraflexx sheet and dehydrate for one hour at 145F, then lower the temp to 115-110F until the muffin tops are firm to the touch. I don’t know how long this will take, but most things I dehydrate take at least 12 hours. Try leaving them in over night and go from there šŸ™‚

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Sharing the love at…Allergy Free Wednesdays, Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays, Healthy Vegan Fridays, Gluten Free Fridays, and Wellness Weekends

Recipe Review: Fig Bars

I’ve been trying lots of other peoples’ recipes lately, so I have quite a few recipe reviews to share with you.

The first review is for Fat Free Vegan’s Skinny Fig Bars. Um, ya. These are amazing. Seriously ah – mahĀ – zing. I rarely make dessertsĀ twice, but in the last few weeks, I’ve come across a couple that I’ve already made at least twice (and one I’ve made three times already!). That’s saying a lot for me. (There are just so many awesome desserts out there that I can’t repeat many eats, or I’ll never get to enjoy even a fraction of what awaits me in dessert wonderland. LOL)

ThisĀ can’t-live-withoutĀ dessert I must haveĀ in the freezer at all times. Seriously. It’s that good. And it’s great frozen! (I wish I didn’t know that. Or rather, my pants wish I didn’t know that.) The middle doesn’t freeze solid, and the crust warms on the counter in a couple of minutes. Or in your hand/mouth instantly šŸ˜‰

I opted for the almonds in the filling, but opted out of the glaze.Ā  The almonds didn’t chop up very well in my wimpy food processor. (Mr. M bought me a massive food processor for Christmas, but I can’t have it until them, so the next time I made these, watch out!) I even tried using almond slices, so it might be a good idea to rough crop them yourself and fold them into the fig/date mix.

I also added a couple of packs of stevia to the oat flour crust just to give it an addedĀ touch of sweetness. (I think stevia brings out the sweetness of other sweeteners without adding that distinctive stevia taste.) Belive me, the filling is plenty sweet enough to cover for the crust.

Skinny Fig Pie!

I didn’t think I had a glass dish to accommodate this recipe, so I used a deep dish pie plate and made Fig Newton pie. This is one pie I actually like!

I was able to get 16 pieces like the recipe suggests, which, at first, I thought would be WAY to small, but they were just right – and about 115 calories per slice. Not bad. Not bad at all.

Who got into the pie?! Oh ya. It was me. Mmmm….

The next time I made these Fig Bars, I’m going to try making them in a mini-muffin tin, hoping they’ll be more like Fig Newtons with crust encasing the filling. I’ll let you know how they turn out!

Side note: AsideĀ from hoarding canned pumpkin, I’m now also hoarding dried figs. Are they available year round?! Someone please let me know!