Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Spiced Zucchini Muffins

As a mom, I want my kids to eat a healthy, balanced diet rich in fruits and vegetables.  Jake has always been a great vegetable eater so I never thought I would be searching for ways to sneak in veggies, but then we had Luke.  After we starting feeding Luke solids he started having some serious GI issues that were impacting his growth.  We finally figured out what was causing them; his body couldn't absorb fructose.  He has now started to outgrow it, but we still have to limit the amount of fruits we give to Luke so I feel even more pressure (from myself) to get extra vegetables into him.

Getting him to eat food in general is a challenge, unless it is a bread product, so I find myself having to get creative to feed him a balanced diet.  Because of how much he loves bread in all of its iterations, I've been thinking about mixing vegetables in with muffins.  I like almost all vegetables, but zucchini is one of the few foods that I don't really like.  I will eat it, but it isn't something I generally choose.  That is probably why I've never had, let alone made, zucchini bread.  Luke inspired me to give it a try.

I decided to make zucchini muffins instead of zucchini bread so that I would have individual servings.  Since this was my first foray into baking with zucchini I wasn't sure where to start so I did a lot of searching.  So many of the recipes that I found had applesauce or banana in them and I wanted these muffins to be fruit free.  I finally found a recipe that was fruit free and decided to give it a try.

The recipe sounded great as is, but I couldn't resist making a few tweaks.  I've pretty much abandoned all purpose flour for white whole wheat flour.  I find it works just as well (at least it does for me) and makes me feel like I'm being a little bit healthier.  As I mentioned, I'm not zucchini's biggest fan so I decided to add in some pumpkin pie spice because it is DE-LI-CIOUS!  I also added in Greek yogurt to keep the muffins nice and moist.

Start out by preheating your oven to 400 and whisking together your dry ingredients: white whole wheat flour, sugar, pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.  Make a well in the center.

In another bowl mix together some shredded zucchini, Greek yogurt (I used fat free), vegetable oil, honey, an egg, and a splash of milk (I used whole but I think whatever you have on hand is fine).

Once your wet ingredients are thoroughly combined, pour them into the well in the center of your dry ingredients and stir just until moistened.

Use an ice cream scoop to scoop the batter into muffin tins sprayed with baking spray.  Bake for 15 minutes, until golden brown, and then remove to a cooling rack.

I made these for Luke, but couldn't stop eating them myself.  The warm flavors from the pumpkin pie spice make these feel like comfort food.

Spiced Zucchini Muffins
Adapted from Kathie's 
  • 1 3/4 cups white whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 1/4 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/3 cups shredded zucchini
  • 1/2 cup fat free Greek yogurt
  • 1 tbls. milk
  • 2 tbls. vegetable oil
  • 2 tbls. honey
  • 1 egg
  1.  Preheat oven to 400 and spray muffin tin with baking spray.
  2. In a medium bowl whisk together dry ingredients, flour through salt, and make a well in the center.
  3. In another bowl or large measuring cup, combine remaining ingredients.
  4. Pour wet ingredients into dry and stir until just combined.
  5. Use an ice cream scoop to portion batter into muffin tins and bake until golden brown, about 15 minutes.

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