I’ve had a revelation! We should all eat like babies. Seriously, babies have wonderfully healthy diets. They don’t eat sugar, they enjoy small portions of high fat dairy, lean meat and fish, whole grains, and fruits and veggies. It’s seriously the way we all should eat! These muffins pass the baby health test (as well as the Tessa taste test – decidedly choosy), which means they are FANTASTIC for you.
Tessa put on her big girl pants recently and decided she’s had enough with getting fed from a spoon – she can feed herself, thank you very much. This presents a challenge as things like yogurt and cottage cheese are no longer an option. I tried everything, including the requisite banana muffins we usually have on the counter. She loved them! However, these muffins have a good amount of sugar and white flour in them. Could I make a muffin that would please her picky taste buds but be purely, 100%, perfectly healthy for her? The answer is YES. These muffins are perfect – with just 3 tbsp. of oil and only 2 tbsp. sweetener (NATURALLY sweet maple syrup), ALL whole grain, with fruit and vegetables to boot – love love!
She ADORES them and eats one with breakfast and one with lunch, every day! Her main competition is me, as I think they’re delicious and often try to play the game “feed mom your food” while she is eating one.
A while ago a friend of mine asked how she could easily lose a few pounds. We discussed her breakfast and snacks, and found baked goods lurking there. I told her – cut out baked goods, especially ones you don’t make yourself. Starbucks lowfat pastries are still a BAD choice when it comes to calories. However, the benefit to baking for yourself is that you can manage the nutrition. These muffins clock in at 130 calories each, with 4 grams of protein and 3 grams of fiber. Eating two for breakfast would be great start to your day!
Muffins for Baby
1/2 c. unsweetened applesauce
1/2 c. pumpkin puree or cooked sweet potato*
3 tbsp. canola oil
1/2 c. milk
2 tbsp. maple syrup
1 c. old fashioned oats
1/2 c. rye flour **
1/2 c. whole wheat flour
1 tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1/2 c. finely chopped dates
*I used sweet potato as I didn’t have canned pumpkin. I pierced the potato with a fork a few times, then microwaved it for 5 minutes. After it cooled, I peeled it and mashed it, then measured 1/2 cup. Done!
**If you don’t have rye flour or don’t want to buy it, just use all whole wheat flour (or 1 c. total)
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. Whisk applesauce, pumpkin (or sweet potato), eggs, oil, milk and syrup together in a large bowl until smoothly combined.
3. In a medium bowl, whisk oats, flours, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and spices together to combine. Add in dates and mix to disperse evenly through dry ingredients.
4. Add dry ingredients to wet and mix gently until JUST combined.
5. Spray muffin pan with nonstick spray or lightly grease with oil or butter. Divide mixture evenly into muffin pan.
6. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until lightly brown and set when you touch the top center.
7. Cool about 5 minutes in pan and then invert onto wire rack to cool completely. When completely cool, store at room temperature in airtight container or freeze in gallon freezer bag. To bring back to room temperature, either refrigerate for several hours or microwave for 30 seconds.