Monday, January 28, 2013

A Whole Wheat Morning Glory Muffin

I am on a mission to develop healthy-ish, but still tasty, breakfast muffin recipes. These pumpkin muffins were a start, but I still feel a little guilty eating something with chocolate chips more than once or twice a week. When Mom mentioned that she had baked Morning Glory muffins a few weeks ago and that they froze well, I started looking for recipes. Let me tell you that there a quite a few different types of muffins that fall under the Morning Glory title. After a few hours of reading recipes, I decided to just work with the basic muffin recipe from my pumpkin muffins and use ingredients that I already had at home.

Morning Glory muffins

I am thrilled with the way these turned out. The whole grains, carrots, and apples don't over power the muffin like I was afraid they would, but they do make for a hearty taste. Steve, who usually turns up his nose at anything that appears to be healthy, was skeptical of the grated carrots, but he ended up eating a few after dinner last night and gave them a thumbs up.

Whole Wheat Morning Glory Muffins

1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup AP flour
1/4 cup wheat bran
1/4 cup ground flaxseed
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ginger
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups peeled and grated carrots
1 large peeled and grated apple
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup raisins
4 large eggs
2 ripe bananas
3/4 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons molasses
2 teaspoons vanilla

Whisk all dry ingredients together in a large bowl.

Grate carrots and apple. Combine with raisins, cranberries, and walnuts. Add to the dry ingredients and  stir until incorporated.

In a medium sized bowl, mash bananas and whisk together with eggs, oil, molasses, and vanilla. Add to the mixture in the large bowl and stir until evenly incorporated.

Coat 18-24 muffin tins or use cupcake papers. Fill tins and bake in at 375 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

A Healthier Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffin

I've been on a muffin kick lately. I guess this is better than a cookie or cupcake habit, but we all know muffins can be deceptively high in calories. So, I took my original pumpkin muffin recipe added some whole wheat and cut back on the sugar and oil.  I actually think the wheat bran adds a nice texture, and I barely missed the sugar. I don't know the exact calorie count or nutrition breakdown, but these are definitely a step in the right direction.


1 cup AP flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup wheat bran
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon cloves
1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 eggs
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 15 ounce can pure pumpkin
3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (optional)

Whisk dry ingredients together. Mix in liquid ingredients. Then add chocolate chips, if you so desire. Coat 18-24 muffin tins with cooking spray or use cupcake papers. Divide batter among the tins. Bake 20-25 minutes at 350 degrees.

These muffins also freeze well. I take them out one at a time and pop them in a warm oven for 5 minutes, and they're ready for a quick breakfast.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

A Second Goal Accomplished: A Picnic with Steve

I'm quite a bit late posting about this goal from 4 Simple Goals Before 2013. But I forbid myself from blogging during the busy end of the semester, and the break just got away from me.

Long live the Hercules (Steve's bike).
It was stolen a week or two after the picnic.

On a lovely Sunday afternoon in November, Steve and I went on a picnic to celebrate a little milestone and enjoy the warm weather. We picked Manderson Landing, a park that overlooks the Black Warrior River, as our destination, packed up the bikes with a mom-made quilt and a little lunch, and headed out. It was a lovely day complete with fall leaves and adorable dogs.

I baked french bread the day before and made a big picnic sandwich for us to split. Steve brought the chips and cokes.

Steve wasn't too impressed with the Renaissance Fair-esque sword fighting going on across the sidewalk, but it's all a day at the park.

I also baked some pantry cookies. I'll post this recipe and the one for the picnic sandwich soon.

My mother made this quilt for my dorm room bed my freshman year of college. I simply love it, and it's perfect for a picnic.

I'm afraid I will only be 2 for 4 on my 4 Simple Goals before 2013. I'll put the letter writing and dressmaking on my list for the new year.

I enjoyed a Christmas break filled to the brim with sewing, cooking, traveling, and visiting with family. Now, I'm a few days into the new semester.

I hope that y'all enjoyed the holidays and your new year is off to a nice start.