Posts Tagged ‘healthy muffins’


I should rename my blog, “Muffin Mama,” since it seems I bake muffins at least twice a week. Baking is stress-relieving for me. In California, I baked muffins and breads regularly, but I because I haven’t bought a loaf pan yet here in Brazil, I’m all about the muffin. Unfortunately, because I can’t figure out the temperature on my oven in Brazil, there have been many muffins batches I wanted to share but couldn’t because they cooked too hot to be worth photographing.

I like making muffins because they’re simple to prepare, fun to eat, easy to make gluten- or dairy-free and low-sugar, and possess some element of nostalgia (possibly from the 80s–or was it the 90s when muffins became so popular that offering “muffin tops” even became a thing?). My kids love them, too, and I can put in all sorts of ingredients, such as carrots, zucchini, wheatgerm, and nuts, while keeping everyone happy.

This recipe is slightly more sophisticated than the banana or blueberry muffins I usually bake. These muffins you might serve when you invite someone over for tea or coffee, or as part of a brunch spread. They have a moist, delicate, cake-like texture, and the orange and almond combination make them just a tad sophisticated–if I can be so bold as to suggest muffins can have any sophistication. These would make a great companion to a leek and gruyere quiche or tart or an herb omelette if you’re inviting friends for brunch.

I’m crazy about almond, so you’ll appreciate the subtle almond flavor in these. If you don’t like almond, just use vanilla extract–just make sure it’s good quality, pure vanilla. I hope you enjoy these as much as I do.



3/4 cup all-purpose gluten-free flour (I like this brand)

1 cup almond flour

2 tsp baking powder

3/4 tsp sea salt

2 eggs

1/2 cup sugar

zest of one orange (roughly 2-3 tsp)

1/2 cup fresh squeezed orange juice

1/3 cup plain yogurt

1/4 cup olive oil

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

1 tsp almond extract

1/3 cup sliced almonds, lightly toasted



Preheat oven to 350F. Prepare a 12-muffin tin by either greasing the cups with a little olive oil or lining them with paper muffin cups.

In a medium bowl, whisk eggs until mixture is even in color. Whisk in sugar, orange zest and juice, yogurt, oil, and extracts.

In a small bowl, whisk together the flours, baking powder and salt. Fold the dry ingredients into the wet mixture and stir until combined. (Don’t over stir.) Spoon the batter evenly into the muffin cups.

Lightly toast the sliced almonds under just lightly golden. Sprinkle evenly over the batter-filled cups. Place in the center of the oven and bake 18-22 minutes or until the edges turn gold and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Allow to cool 5-10 minutes before serving. Once completely cooled, muffins can be stored in an airtight container for up to four days.




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apple muffin closeapple muffin close2OK. You might be right… It seems I post a lot of muffin recipes. But who doesn’t love a muffin? Grain or grain-free, I’m a baker at heart. Muffins are simple to make, nostalgic for some of us, and there are infinite possibilities in the realm of muffins.

These almond apple muffins are moist, hearty and flavorful, just like muffins should be. They also get a boost of protein from the almond flour, and as usual, they’re low in sugar.



1 cup whole-grain spelt flour

1 cup almond flour (Bob’s Red Mill is a good choice)

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp sea salt

2 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon, divided

1/4 tsp nutmeg

2 cups apples, cored and diced into 1/4-1/2-inch bits

1/4 cup butter, softened

1/4 cup coconut oil, softened

1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp evaporated cane sugar, divided

2 eggs

2 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 cup milk or milk substitute, such as coconut or almond



Preheat oven to 375F.

Grease a standard muffin pan or use cupcake liners.

Mix the flours, baking soda, salt and 2 tsp ground cinnamon in a medium bowl. Use a fork to break up any lumps in the almond flour. Add in the diced apple and stir to coat the pieces.


apple muffin mixIn a separate large bowl, beat the butter and oil until fluffy. Beat in the eggs and 1/2 cup sugar until well blended. Mix in the vanilla extract and milk. Fold the flour/apple mixture into the wet mixture stirring until just blended.

Spoon into the prepared muffin tin filling each cup about halfway.


apple muffin bakeMix the remaining 2 tbsp sugar and 1/2 tsp cinnamon in a small bowl. Sprinkle over each cup of muffin dough. Place the muffin pan in the oven and bake for about 25 minutes or until muffins are lightly golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.


apple muffin bake2Makes 12 muffins.


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