My favorite thing to do on weekends is watch Food Network's The Kitchen (seriously my favorite show EVER, check it out if you haven't yet) and bake delicious goodies.
My weekly meals consist of mostly plant-based foods with the occasional boiled egg or roasted fish so when Sunday comes around it's my mission to try out a new good-for-you cookie, muffin, or other sweet treat recipe. Being gluten-free used to limit my breakfast and dessert intake immensely - there were little to no options available at restaurants, coffee shops, even grocery stores. That was 8 years ago and now the world has finally caught up which for me is a blessing and a curse. Hear me out here. I am so happy that the Celiac and GF population can now enjoy foods that they used to miss out on. Our previous avoidance of certain restaurants has gone down, and so has the envious stare-into-your-friends-mouth-as-she-takes-a-bite-of-stuffed-french-toast-from-your-favorite-breakfast-spot move. Not very classy.
But, have you noticed that all the gluten-free replacements are like 10 times more unhealthy than the gluten-full versions? Gluten-free pizza typically has 90 more calories, 4 grams less protein and 8 more grams of fat than regular pizza. GF sweet treats typically have more sugar and/or butter to maintain the gooey dense texture we've come to expect in a cookie or muffin. And I thought being gluten-free was more healthy. Not fair.
That's why I decided to try my hand at creating homemade treats. I know what's going into the batter, and into my belly. It's a win-win! Oh, and another positive is that each batch typically contains about 12 servings. Since I'm only feeding myself and my partner, the rest of the treats will either last us for a few days, get shared amongst visiting friends, or get frozen for later. My love of dessert is mostly a textural thing rather than a sugar-bomb craving so I can create a muffin that uses a small amount of sweetener and be happy. All I really care about is TEXTURE. And these muffins sure have a decadent gluten-y texture.
My sweet recipes use honey, maple syrup, maple sugar, coconut sugar or mashed bananas for sweetness and coconut flour, almond flour, oats and chickpea flour for texture. Each sweetener and flour has it's own place and is just as satisfying as using the "regular" version. I also like to enhance my foods with nutrient dense superfoods like prunes, chia/flax/hemp seeds and nuts. Nutritious and delicious!
This weekend I made dense and delicious Honey Oat Banana Muffins. Packed with healthy fats, dietary fiber, Vitamin C, protein and anti-inflammatory nuts these babies will melt your all muffin-guilt away. Take a bite knowing you are feeding yourself real, wholesome food.
Try this recipe on your own and let me know what you think!