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    Archive for the ‘muffins’ Category

    Quick & Healthy Recipes: Cinnamon-Walnut Whole Grain Muffins

    cinnamonThis past weekend I craved muffins to go along with my recently-purchased hazelnut-roasted coffee.

    Instead of treking down to a local bakery for a gigantic 500-calorie bomb, I decided to make my own.

    Apart from pairing up perfectly with a hot cup of coffee on a brisk autumn day, these muffins are 100% whole grain, vegan, and chock full of omega-3 fatty acids.

    See how you like them!

    YIELDS: 18 mini muffins

    INGREDIENTS:
    2 cups whole wheat flour (or whole wheat pastry flour or whole wheat white flour)
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    2 Tablespoons ground flaxseed
    1/3 cup chopped walnuts
    1.5 teaspoons cinnamon
    4 Tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
    1 Tablespoon coconut oil
    1/2 Tablespoon canola oil
    (NOTE: You could omit the coconut oil and instead add an additional tablespoon of canola oil)
    1/4 cup agave nectar, brown rice syrup, or maple syrup
    2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    1 cup water

    INSTRUCTIONS:

    Place all dry ingredients (from whole wheat flour to cinnamon) in one bowl.

    In another bowl, mix together all wet ingredients (from applesauce to water).

    Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients bowl.

    Mix together lightly, making sure not to overmix.

    Scoop mixed batter into muffin tin and bake for 20 minutes at 375 degrees Fahrenheit

    OPTIONAL (but recommended): Once out of the oven, sprinkle additional cinnamon on top of muffins.

    NUTRITION INFORMATION (for 2 mini muffins, with coconut oil):

    184 calories
    2.5 grams saturated fat (if using only canola oil: 0.5 grams saturated fat)
    320 milligrams sodium
    4.4 grams fiber
    7.2 grams added sugar
    4.5 grams protein

    Excellent Source of: Manganese, selenium

    Good Source of: Alpha Linolenic Omega-3 Fatty Acids, copper, magnesium, phosphorus

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    Quick & Health(ier) Recipe: Whole Grain Chocolate Chip Muffins

    img71mSince I am leaving the country for a few weeks on Sunday, I am trying to use up every ingredient in my pantry and refrigerator — like whole wheat flour and soy milk — that will otherwise spoil while I am away.

    This “no frills” muffin recipe (which can be vegan or not, depending on your preference) was the end result.  A friend of mine stopped by later in the evening, and, upon trying them, said I “have to put these on the blog!”

    I personally love them because they are a great way to satisfy a craving for baked goods without overloading on calories and sugar.  The fact that they are 100% whole grain doesn’t hurt, either!

    YIELDS: 12 mini muffins (in 24-muffin pan, as shown in accompanying photograph)

    INGREDIENTS:

    1 cup whole wheat flour
    2 Tablespoons wheat germ (optional)
    1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
    1/8 teaspoon salt
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder
    2 teaspoons vanilla powder (or vanilla extract)
    2 Tablespoons dark chocolate chips (if vegan, use carob chips or vegan chocolate chips)
    1 “flax egg”* (or 1 egg)
    1/2 cup unsweetened soy milk (or any other milk of your choice)
    3/4 tablespoon coconut oil
    1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
    2 teaspoons sugar (or honey or agave nectar or maple syrup)

    *NOTE: a “flax egg” is made by mixing two tablespoons of water with one tablespoon of ground flaxseeds.

    INSTRUCTIONS:

    Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

    Place all dry ingredients (from whole wheat flour to chocolate chips) in one bowl.  In another bowl, place all wet ingredients (from “flax egg” or real egg to sugar).  If using vanilla powder, place with dry ingredients.  Vanilla extract should go in “wet ingredients” bowl.

    Add dry ingredients to wet ingredient bowl and slowly fold together.  Be sure to not overmix, as this will result in tough muffins you could bounce off the floor.

    Lightly spray muffin pan with baking spray (to prevent the batter from sticking).

    Fill muffin cups evenly with batter.

    Bake for 20 minutes in oven, or until toothpick inserted in center of muffin comes out clean.

    NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION (for 2 mini muffins made with soy milk and “flax egg”):

    155 calories
    1 gram saturated fat
    150 milligrams sodium
    4 grams fiber
    4 grams added sugar
    4 grams protein

    Excellent source of: Manganese, selenium

    Good source of: Folate, niacin, pantothenic acid, riboflavin, thiamin, vitamin B6

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    Numbers Game: Answer

    When comparing an Au Bon Pain double chocolate chunk muffin with a large order of McDonald’s french fries, the muffin provides 70 MORE calories (570 calories vs. the large fries’ 500 calories).

    That’s not all, folks.

    This muffin also provides double the saturated fat of those large fries — and 100 MORE milligrams of sodium!

    Oh, and then there are those 11 teaspoons of added sugar.

    These gigantic muffins truly irritate me because they suck away all the enjoyment from savoring a chocolatey baked good.

    Why can’t these simply be half the size (and calories)? A 285 calorie muffin sounds more reasonable — and easier to justify as an occasional treat.

    And anyone who says “just don’t eat the whole thing!” needs to go up to their bedroom and read Brian Wansink’s amazing book, Mindless Eating.

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    Numbers Game: Compare and Contrast

    When comparing An Au Bon Pain double chocolate chunk muffin with a large order of McDonald’s french fries, the muffin provides _____ ______ calories.

    a) 70 MORE
    b) 50 FEWER

    c) THE SAME AMOUNT OF

    d) 120 MORE

    Leave your guess in the “comments” section and come back on Friday for the answer.

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