A secret fact about me, I guess until now (!), is that I love baked goods. Love, love, love.
I’m fairly certain this “love” developed during childhood. After years of regular visits to Dunkin’ Donuts with my dad, the association between any kind of baked good and his love grew.
It’s an interesting pattern I see when I dig in with my clients to better understand their favorite so-called comfort foods. In many cases, the particular food connects back to childhood rituals that involved an underlying need for love and connection. So in reality, it wasn’t really the food that ended up to be that special, but rather, the together time and what that together time meant and brought about.
When I make time to bake at home, it can be a bit of a time suck to make muffins and breads. I don’t use packaged mixes and I like to try different recipes out there for “healthier” options. I know, I know… the elusive definition of “healthier” that we chase. It can be confusing in the context of baked goods. Gluten-free? Low carb? Low fat? Low calorie? Artificial sweeteners? Vegan? On and on… but I digress once more.
I’m intrigued with the “muffin in a cup” quickie concoctions. A couple minutes to yield a muffin-like goodie? A quick Google search shows over 40 million hits, so I’m not the only one who has some interest.
Instead of following one of the typical recipes that calls for added sugars (no matter if it’s a “natural” sugar such as coconut sugar or honey), I wanted to try a mix that derives sweetness from a small amount of fruit instead. Here’s what I came up with:
1 Tbsp almond flour
1 Tbsp coconut flour
1 Tbsp flax meal
2 Tbsp vanilla whey isolate powder (~8-10 grams of protein; sub your favorite protein powder)
1/2 tsp baking powder
dash or two of ground cinnamon
2 Tbsp half and half (you can use any unsweetened milk of choice)
3 Tbsp water
3-4 Tbsp of blueberries (I used frozen)
Mix dry ingredients together in a microwaveable mug or glass container.
Add liquids and blueberries. Stir to mix. You can opt to let it sit for a minute to thicken.
Microwave on high for 1-2 minutes. My microwave is aging, so mine was in for a total of 2 minutes, but I did give the mixture a good stir after 1 minute. You can experiment with microwave cook time by starting with 45 second intervals.
Note that you can easily make this recipe vegan by using a plant protein powder and a non-dairy milk.
Basic nutrition info:
15 grams carbohydrate
6.5 grams fiber
11 grams protein
10 grams fat
1:1 carbohydrate to protein ratio
While it’s not exactly the feel of a legit muffin, it is darn good enough. And it provides a touch of sweetness without the double whammy of sugar-fat bombs. We skip the 40+ grams of sugar that some other muffins contain. This 3M can work as a light snack or even serve as a pre-workout snack in the mid- or late afternoon. Win!
Give it a whirl and let me know what you think! More experimentation to come, fo’ sho.
Thanks for reading,