When I was pregnant with Kellen, my cravings manifested in the forms of cupcakes and steak. I have heard that your child’s taste profile begins in the womb. In Kellen’s case, I believe it. The kid is equal parts sweet tooth and carnivore.
Kellen is a picky eater. One of the things I can count on him to consume is muffins. Unfortunately, muffins don’t always have the greatest nutritional content- white flour and processed sugar. I wanted a recipe to give him the food he likes, but also squeeze in a bit more of the good stuff he needs.
I started with this recipe for easy blueberry muffins. I’ve always liked this recipe because it uses ingredients I have on hand, and can be done in a single bowl.
I began to play with the flour and sugar contents by substituting oats, whole wheat flour, mashed banana, and applesauce. A family member suggested looking for a specific healthy recipe, but I already knew this recipe by heart. It was easy to make substitutions and still get them baked quickly.
The flour substitution is pretty easy. Instead of using 1 and 1/2 cups all purpose flour, I opt for half flour, half quick oats. I have also done them with half whole wheat flour/ half quick oats, but that can be a little dense for some tastes.
I found this article on substituting applesauce for sugar.
In the muffin recipe, the sugar serves to aerate the bread and to brown. For those reasons, I didn’t want to get rid of it completely. I opted to reduce the sugar to 1/4 cup, and add 1/2 cup applesauce. I reduced the milk to 1/3 cup to account for the extra liquid in the applesauce. To make banana muffins, I used banana instead of applesauce and eliminated the blueberries.
I’ve made two batches of these muffins in a week, so I would say the boys haven’t noticed the difference in the recipe. Or if they have, the results are acceptable.
What are your tips for increasing the health quotient in kid-friendly foods?
- 3/4 cup (195 grams) all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup quick oats
- 1/4 cup (150 grams) sugar
- 1/2 cup applesauce or mashed ripe banana
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/3 cup (79 ml) vegetable oil
- 1 large egg
- 1/3 (79 ml – 118 ml) reduced fat (2 %) milk
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup (170 grams or 6 ounces) fresh blueberries
Mix dry ingredients. Add wet ingredients and mix together. Fill cups in muffin pan. Bake at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes.