When I was a young, working woman I walked to my office almost every day and almost every day I would stop and get a muffin for breakfast. Does anyone remember Warburton’s? It was a chain of bakeries and I frequented the one in Boston’s Downtown Crossing. They had mini-loaves of zucchini bread that they passed off as muffins and they were ridiculously delicious. They must have had 600 calories. But I was young and my metabolism was strong so it didn’t matter. Sigh.
I have admitted to my muffin problem previously. I was going to say that it hasn’t gotten any better, but upon further contemplation, I realized that I am actually eating fewer muffins and those that I do eat are of better quality. For instance, I will not eat a supermarket muffin that was probably made from a mix and loaded with sugar. I’ve seen the (empty) calorie counts on those babies and it’s not pretty. If I’m going to splurge on a muffin, it totally has to be worth the calories. Having some nutritional value would be a big plus too, but that’s rare. No, bran muffins are not health food.
These peanut butter power muffins may not technically be “health food” either, but they are packed with good stuff, so you don’t feel like you’re straying (too far) from a sensible diet. Peanut butter, bananas, oatmeal, flax seed, almond milk, and whole wheat flour are all very nice, but if the whole package didn’t taste good, it still wouldn’t be worthwhile.
Fortunately those ingredients, combined with a few more, make an irresistible muffin and a breakfast (or snack) you can feel good about. So much more delicious than those sugar-packed bombs at the coffee shop and so much better for you. Try them with a dollop of strawberry jam if you’re a pb and j fan. Add a few chocolate chips if peanut butter and chocolate is your thing (it’s definitely mine). But let’s not get carried away. Then it would be tough to rationalize eating more than one. Who would do such a thing?
The first time I made peanut butter power muffins, I had some trouble getting them out of the tin. They are VERY moist, so using muffin papers is the way to go. Also, if you don’t have almond milk, don’t fret. I’m sure regular or soy milk would work as well. Please note, these are egg and can be dairy free, for those of you who do make note of such things. And a reminder about the whole wheat flour – I always use whole wheat pastry flour for a lighter texture. It can usually be found in the natural foods section of your grocery store.
Peanut Butter Power Muffins adapted from relish.com
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 1/2 tsps. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 cup old-fashioned oats (not quick-cooking)
1/4 cup chopped peanuts, divided
2 Tbsps. ground flax seed or wheat germ
1/2 cup almond or soy milk
4 Tbsps. canola oil
6 Tbsps. pure maple syrup
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup peanut butter, crunchy or smooth
1 tsp. cider vinegar
2 medium bananas, mashed
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 12 cup muffin tin with muffin papers.
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, brown sugar, cinnamon and ground flax seed. Stir in oats and half the chopped peanuts.
In another bowl, combine almond or soy milk, oil, maple syrup, vanilla, peanut butter, vinegar and bananas. Mash together until well-blended. Add to dry ingredients and stir until just combined, being careful not to over mix.
Fill muffin cups 3/4 full with batter. Bake for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
Note: I had some batter left, so I poured it into a mini-loaf pan and baked it. Just like Warburton’s!