banana mini muffins

DSC_0974.JPG

cute, fun and school safe

I think I’ve mentioned this before; banana bread is a staple in our house and I make it probably almost biweekly (sometimes even weekly!). It’s one of those recipes that I can make with my eyes closed and it’s always a hit with the kids. Especially when there are some chocolate chips in it!  I always buy extra bananas (and even the bananas that are for quick sale at the grocery store because they are very spotty – just pop them in the freezer!) so that I always have them on hand at home.

I have 2 or 3 versions that are my go to’s but today as boss and I mixed the batter I decided to switch it up from a loaf pan to mini muffins. My mini muffin pan has been at the bottom of my cupboard and quite neglected. The kids loved the look of mini muffins and a bonus is that they take way less baking time (good for the gas bill!). They make for easy storage and pack nicely for lunches.

Be sure to butter or spray your muffin tray really well (or you can line the tray with mini muffin cups) or else your batter will stick and then it’s annoying to clean.

prep: 10 min   bake:  15 min     yield: 24 mini muffins

what you need:

  • 3 large very ripe bananas
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup plain greek yogurt
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 tbsp or more of melted butter (to grease muffin tray)

what to do:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. In a large bowl, mash bananas with a large fork until mushy. Add egg and mix well into the bananas (using the fork is fine).
  3. Add vanilla, maple syrup and butter and mix well with fork again.
  4. In a separate bowl, combine salt, flour, oats and baking soda.
  5. Add dry ingredients to banana mixture. Mix with fork until just incorporated – do not over mix or you will have dense muffins.
  6. Fold in greek yogurt, just until incorporated.
  7. Fold in chocolate chips.
  8. Grease muffin tray with melted butter, using a brush, making sure to grease the bottom and sides.
  9. Fill each muffin cup to the top. They will rise as they bake, making the classic muffin top.
  10. Bake in the centre rack for ~15 minutes. I used convection so if you have a regular oven it may take a bit longer. For the last 2 minutes I turned the oven to broil high to get a golden brown top (if you’re doing this keep a close eye because depending on how hot your oven gets they can burn quickly!). They are done when a toothpick comes out just clean (not wet but little bits of batter can be present).
  11. Remove from oven, and then after a few minutes when they are cool enough to handle, transfer each individual muffin to cooling rack to cool completely. Enjoy!
IMG_7873.JPG

hot out of the oven

FullSizeRender.jpg

broil for a minute or two for golden brown tops

Advertisements

banana muffins with a seedy crumble

img_7828

a school safe twist to banana nut muffins

Since pie pie started kindergarten, I’ve been tweaking my baking a bit to accommodate school safe snacks.  Sometimes for banana bread, muffins, or even cookies, I like to add ground up nuts into the batter for extra nuttiness and nutrition, but today I used seeds instead and made it into a crumble.  I am really pleased with how they turned out!  The crumble adds texture to the muffin and also makes them look really pretty.

IMG_7826.JPG

fresh out of the oven

prep: 15 min    bake: 15 min    yield: 12 regular muffins

what you need:

crumble:

  • 1/3 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1/3 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1 heaping tbsp flax seeds
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter (room temperature)
  • 3 tbsp brown sugar

muffins:

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup greek yogurt, plain
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 3 large bananas
  • 1/4 cup sugar (you can use white, brown, or coconut sugar)
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract

what to do:

  1. Line a muffin tray with muffin cups, preheat oven to 350 F (or 325 F for convection).
  2. In a food processor or powerful blender (I used my Ninja), chop up seeds (not too fine). Place them into a bowl and add cinnamon and butter, mashing the butter with the ground seeds to evenly distribute. It should be mealy (sort of looks like partly wet sand).
  3. In a large bowl, beat bananas and sugar together, then add in vanilla, egg and butter (it is easier to incorporate if you melt the butter slightly).
  4. In a separate bowl, measure and mix together your oats, flour, salt, and baking soda.
  5. Add dry ingredients to banana mixture, mix just until they come together – do not over mix or you will have tough dense muffins!
  6. Fold in greek yogurt.
  7. Scoop to fill your muffin cups, then top generously with crumble (about 1 heaping tbsp each muffin).

    FullSizeRender-1.jpg

    ready for the oven

  8. Bake for 15 minutes, until toothpick comes out clean and tops are golden brown. If the toothpick comes out clean but the tops are not browned yet, switch your oven to broil just for 30 seconds – 1 minute to brown the tops.
  9. Remove from oven and when cool enough to handle, remove from muffin tins and onto cooling rack to cool completely.
  10. ENJOY!
FullSizeRender.jpg

boss, my little helper

berry banana muffins

muffin

no fat in this delicious baked good!

I love making fresh muffins for snacks or breakfast, and they are fun to make with the kids because they aren’t too labour intensive.  My 3 year old likes to help with ingredient measuring and lining the muffin tins.  It’s really fun to watch them in the oven as they bake, but of course when they are done the hard part is patiently waiting as they cool. I used to make these with half a cup of vegetable oil but today I actually ran out (I had olive oil but I find olive oil has a strong taste for baked goods) – therefore I just tried yogurt in place of the oil and it worked!  I will admit, the paper doesn’t peel away as easily from the muffin as it usually would, but the muffins are delicious nonetheless.  These are nut free therefore can be a school safe snack! Pie pie was very excited to pack one into her lunch bag for preschool today:)

prep time:  5 min     bake: 20 min     yield: 12 regular muffins

what you need:

  • 3 very ripe large bananas
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar or coconut sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp ground flax seed
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup frozen berries

what to do:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 F (350 F for convection oven). Line a muffin tin with muffin cups.
  2. In a large bowl, mash bananas fairly well with a fork, then whisk in sugar, egg, vanilla, and syrup. Stir in the yogurt.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine flour, oats, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
  4. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients, just folding gently until combined (do not overmix as these will create dense tough muffins).
  5. Gently fold in the berries.  Fill muffin cups and bake for about 20 minutes. Remove from oven, then when cool enough to handle, transfer them to cooling rack to cool completely. Enjoy!

banana bran muffins

banana muffin

a touch of sweet

Don’t be fooled by the title of the recipe – these banana bran muffins aren’t dry or taste “healthy” like the cardboard bran muffins you buy in a coffee shop when you’re trying to be good and then end up disappointed.  They pack full banana flavour, are very tender and moist, and some of them even have a special centre.  Yes that’s right – pie pie and I decided it might be fun to put a small teaspoon of nutella in the centre of a few of the muffins…… just to see how it turned out…. of course it turned out! They were delicious!  Even without the nutella, these muffins are a hit and the boss (below) polished off a whole one on her own.  We brought some over to a friend’s house for a playdate and they were well received!  With the natural and relatively healthy ingredients that go into this muffin, you’ll feel good feeding them to your family.

the boss eating a muffin

one of the boss’ favourites

prep: 10 min    bake:  15-18 min     yield: 12 muffins

what you need:

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup bran
  • 1/2 cup organic coconut sugar (use brown sugar if you don’t have coconut sugar)
  • 1 egg
  • 3 large bananas (very ripe)
  • 1/2 cup light tasting vegetable oil (such as grape seed oil)
  • 100 g vanilla yogurt (1 single container)
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • nutella *optional*

what to do:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. (I don’t actually preheat my oven until I’m filling the muffin cups with the batter, simply because my oven heats up so fast! No point in wasting gas… But every baking recipe out there says preheat oven first…must be one of those standards or because ovens used to take longer to heat up!)
  2. Line a muffin tin with muffin cups.
  3. In a bowl, combine flour, bran, salt and baking soda.
  4. In a large bowl, mash bananas until very mushy or use a mixer and beat for about 1 min.
  5. Add sugar and beat/whisk until slightly fluffy.
  6. Add egg and vanilla. Mix well.
  7. Add the dry ingredients – do not over mix – just until flour is evenly distributed (lumpy batter is ok!).  Over mixing will make tough dense muffins. Fold in the yogurt.

    pie pie folding yogurt

    pie pie scooping out her favourite yogurt

  8. Fill your muffin cups about 3/4. If you are doing the nutella centre – fill just a little bit at the bottom, put a small teaspoon of nutella into the centre, then top with more batter.
    nutella middles

    different cups to mark nutella versus plain

    muffins filled

    muffins ready to bake! 

  9. Bake for about 15-18 minutes –
    pie pie patiently waits

    pie pie patiently waits

    I know it sounds funny with such a wide range for time but we recently moved and I find my new oven to cook much faster sometimes…apparently it has more BTUs than our last gas stove. Anyways, I have burnt a batch of cookies and it was not fun! So definitely always check at the earlier time!  Muffins are ready when a toothpick comes out with just a tiny bit of crumbs stuck to it (if it comes out super clean it’s overdone!) – remember, while they cool they still continue to cook in the muffin tin until you remove and place onto cooling rack.

  10. Remove from oven and remove from muffin tin when cool enough to handle (I usually can’t wait and gingerly lift them out with 2 forks and get them onto a cooling rack asap!).  Enjoy!

    a nutella surprise centre

    a nutella surprise centre