Apple Pie Bran Muffins

A few months ago, we decided to stop eating (and buying) cereal. I’m working on a post with lots of healthier alternatives (that are still fast!) but for now, I’ll give you another muffin recipe. A lot of muffins are basically just cake that we’ve convinced ourselves is ok to eat for breakfast. Not these babies!

apple pie bran muffins

its good for youThese are full of whole-grain goodness, protein, and no sugar or oil! (Well, no processed sugar – there is natural sugar in the apples and honey) Oh, and honey is basically a super food.

We make a batch of muffins almost every week, and it lasts about a week for breakfasts or snacks since we don’t eat them every day. They’re quick to make, really tasty, healthy, and filling. And one of the reasons I love to make muffins is that my little boy loves to help me make them!

making apple pie bran muffins

He’s such a good little helper in the kitchen! (When he’s not trying to snitch bites of dough or spilling things… Also, I don’t know what’s up with the tongue sticking out.) He stirs up all the dry ingredients for me while I mix the wet, and he puts the muffin liners in the pan, and he puts the ingredients away when we’re done with them. And he also sings the “Muffin Man” song while we make them. He’s pretty adorable sometimes.

This recipe is adapted from my Honey Orange Bran Muffins recipe, but I made enough changes that I decided to give these their own post.

Start by mixing up all the dry ingredients – the oat bran, whole wheat flour, baking soda and powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt – in a large bowl.

Peel and chop the apple into small pieces.

apple cinnamon bran muffins recipe

Mix the wet ingredients – the yogurt, applesauce, eggs, honey, vanilla – in a smaller bowl. Fold in the apple chunks. Then pour the yogurt mixture in with the flour mixture, folding together until everything is moist.

honey orange bran muffins recipe 1

 

Spoon into muffin pan (I use paper liners) and bake at 350 for about 12 minutes.

apple pie bran muffins recipe

They should be turning golden on the top. Let them cool on a wire rack, and enjoy! These muffins tend to look a bit lumpier on top than the other ones, but they’re still delicious! (And healthier since I subbed out the sugar for applesauce!)

no sugar apple cinnamon bran muffins

Apple Pie Bran Muffins

1 cup oat bran (wheat works too)
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
pinch salt
1 cup Greek yogurt
2 eggs
1/4 cup applesauce
1/4 cup honey
1 tsp vanilla
1 small apple

1. Preheat oven to 350. Mix all dry ingredients – bran, flour, baking soda and powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt – in a large bowl.

2. Peel and chop the apple into small pieces.

3. Mix all wet ingredients – yogurt, eggs, applesauce, honey, and vanilla – in smaller bowl. Fold in apple pieces. Pour into the large bowl with the dry ingredients, and stir until combined, and all ingredients are moist.

4. Spoon batter into greased muffin pan (or with paper liners). Fill each muffin about 3/4 full. Bake for about 12 minutes, or until tops begin to turn golden brown. Let cool on wire rack.

Makes about 18 muffins

 

Veggie Banana Bran Muffins (aka Sneaky Muffins)

A while back my toddler went through a super picky phase, especially when it came to eating vegetables.  He used to eat just about anything we gave him, but then he decided he basically only wanted to eat quesadillas and fruit.  I’ve been told this is really common with toddlers, but it’s still rather frustrating at times.  So I had to get a bit more sneaky.

toddler muffins

(I thought this was a good picture for being sneaky since the muffin kind of blends in with the counter! I know, I’m so clever.)

time saverOne of the things I really like about these muffins is that they freeze well!  So if you have lots of zucchini in your garden this summer, make a few batches and freeze them.  Or if you know they won’t get eaten fast enough, just pop them in a freezer bag and stick them in the freezer. You can even just pull out one or two at a time as needed.

They’re also actually quite tasty, so they’re definitely not just for toddlers. I just made them in a mini muffin pan so they were more toddler size, and were sneaking in some veggies for my picky little man. But let’s be honest, we can probably all use some more veggies in our lives! But with the carrots and spices, they’re almost like mini carrot cakes.

its good for you Carrots and zucchini are both full of vitamins of course; bran gives you lots of fiber; and there’s only a little sugar since the bananas naturally sweeten them. In fact, you could probably make them without any sugar at all, or even substitute applesauce (I’m planning to try that as soon as I have some more zucchini from my garden!)

banana carrot zucchini bran muffins 2

Start by shredding the carrots and zucchini in a food processor or with a box grater. Mix the butter and sugar, then add the bananas, eggs, and shredded veggies. The carrots and zucchini will get kind of stuck on the beaters, so you might have to stop occasionally and scrape them.

Mix in the dry ingredients, then spoon the batter into a muffin pan. Bake until they’re golden on top, let them cool, and enjoy!

banana carrot zucchini bran muffins

Sneaky Muffins (Banana Veggie Bran Muffins)

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 large, very ripe bananas
1 small-medium zucchini, shredded
2 medium carrots, shredded
2 eggs
1 cup flour
1/2 cup oat or wheat bran
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp salt

1. Preheat oven to 375 F.

2. With an electric mixer, mix butter and sugar together until smooth.  Add bananas, zucchini, carrots, and eggs, and mix well, until the bananas are smoothly mashed into the dough.

3. Add remaining ingredients, and mix until just combined.

4. Spoon batter into greased muffin or mini muffin pan.  Fill each muffin 2/3 to 3/4 full.

5. Bake for 13-15 minutes for mini muffins, or 15-18 minutes for regular muffins.  Cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.

Yield: about 2 dozen mini muffins or 1 dozen regular muffins

change it upYou could also add raisins, chopped apples, or flax seed.

 

*I originally published this recipe on my other blog – A Song of Sixpence. It has more crafty/mommy ideas and such, so I decided to re-blog this recipe here.

Honey Orange Bran Muffins

A bran muffin that doesn’t taste like cardboard? Yes, it’s possible. And delicious. And healthy.

honey orange blackberry bran muffins 1

A few things I love about these muffins:

1. They’re delicious! Seriously, I want to eat them all the time.

2. My little boy loves to help me make them. He stirs up all the dry ingredients, and usually doesn’t even spill much because we use a giant bowl!

3. its good for youThey’re actually pretty good for you! They have a fair amount of protein from the Greek yogurt and the eggs, plus the whole grains which have some protein. And they’re made with whole grains! Lots of fiber and other goodness! There’s very little processed sugar because the honey and orange zest give them flavor and sweetness. Oh, and honey is also super good for you!

4. They’re pretty quick to make, and then you have breakfast/snacks for several days. They also freeze pretty well, so you could make a big batch and freeze them, and then just pop them a few in the toaster oven as needed.

orange honey blackberry whole wheat bran muffins

Okay, done with my rant about why these muffins are great. On to how to make them:

The first thing you’ll want to do is zest an orange. You can use a box grater, a citrus zester, or this awesome grater I got from Ikea. (sorry for the random product shout out, but seriously, it’s grate. I mean great.)

honey orange bran muffins recipe 2

A little tip for zesting: Try not to push too hard. You don’t want to get too much of the lighter pulpy part under the peel because it tends to be more bitter.

Next you’ll mix all the dry ingredients – oat bran, whole wheat flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt – in a large bowl. Mix the wet ingredients – yogurt, eggs, vanilla, oil, honey, and orange zest – in a smaller bowl.

honey orange bran muffins recipe 1

Pour the wet ingredients into the larger bowl with the dry ingredients, and mix together with a wooden spoon. Just mix until all the dry ingredients are wet – don’t over mix or mix too vigorously. (I don’t let my two-year-old do this part.)

honey orange bran muffins recipe 3

(Not quite mixed enough yet)

If you’re adding any fruit, gently fold it in. Then spoon the batter into a muffin pan lined with paper liners. Fill each one about 2/3 full.

honey orange bran muffins recipe 4

Bake in the oven at 375 for 12-15 minutes. Let cool for a few minutes in the muffin pan, then move to a cooling rack.

honey orange bran muffins 1

Honey Orange Bran Muffins

Ingredients:

1 cup oat bran
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
1/4 cup honey
zest of 1 orange (1-2 Tbsp)

1. Preheat oven to 375. Mix bran, flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and sugar in a large bowl.

2. Mix yogurt, oil, vanilla, eggs, honey, and orange zest in a smaller bowl.

3. Gently fold wet ingredients into dry ingredients. Mix with a wooden spoon until just combined, and all dry ingredients are wet. (If you’re adding any fruit, add it now.)

4. Spoon batter into a muffin pan with paper liners, filling each about 2/3 full. Bake for 12-15 minutes, until the tops are golden brown. Remove from oven, and let cool a few minutes before moving to a cooling rack to finish cooling.

Yield: About 1 dozen muffins.

honey orange blackberry bran muffins

change it upMix in 1 cup of blackberries or blueberries, 1/2 cup craisins, or 1 tsp cloves for variety! (If you add 1 cup of fruit, you will get about 18 muffins instead of 12.)