Baking in the summertime seems ridiculous, especially considering how hot it’s been. Sometimes, it’s unavoidable… like when my niece turns three! I’m the “weird” aunt who doesn’t give the kids juice, or candy, or chicken nuggets. So it’s to be expected when I make her a special birthday treat that it’s going to be healthy. I decided to kick-off her third birthday with a healthy, delicious, kid-friendly breakfast.
With plenty of in-season strawberries at my disposal, I chose a strawberry muffin. It looks like a cupcake to a toddler, but it’s so much better for her. Plus, I just wanted a strawberry muffin!
My goal was to use whole grain flour and not use any sugar, and a quick search lead me to Yummly where a recipe made that possible! This recipe for Strawberry-Lemonade Muffins was exactly what I was looking for and more. With a few slight modifications I was able to make this on a whim with ingredients I had on hand… with a few helping hands.
My daughter’s favorite place to be is atop her stool right at the counter with me. For this recipe she added most of the ingredients, including the eggs and she even attempted to zest the lemon. Egg cracking is fun for a toddler, and it’s a small nightmare of a mess for moms. My solution is to crack the egg in to a measuring cup and let her pour that in to the mixing bowl. Everyone is happy!
She was excited to help make muffins for her cousin, even if she didn’t know how good they were for both of them. This recipe followed one of my favorite rules for baking – half all-purpose flour and half whole grain flour. It also included oats, helping to add a little bit more fiber.
While the original recipe called for sugar, I skipped that. With the honey, natural applesauce, yogurt, lemon, and fresh strawberries, I thought the recipe sounded sweet enough (especially for breakfast).
The batter was slightly dough-like, so I added a couple tablespoons of skim milk to thin it out. Then, I gently folded in the diced strawberries. Finally, I filled the bright paper cups about two-thirds full and baked for 20 minutes.
The finished product was light, sweet, and perfectly golden brown. One of these with a cup of yogurt and fresh fruit made a satisfying breakfast, especially for a busy three-year-old trying to power through opening gifts.
Makes 18 muffins
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup old fashioned oats
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
3 Tbsp honey
1/4 cup Mott’s natural applesauce
2 Tbsp lemon juice
zest of 1 lemon
1 tsp vanilla extract
6 oz. strawberry banana Chobani Greek yogurt
1 cup Driscoll’s strawberries, chopped
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place paper liners in muffin pan.
2. Mix oats and yogurt and set aside (this will soften the oats).
3. In a large bowl, combine flours, baking soda, and baking powder.
4. In another bowl, beat the egg and mix in the honey, applesauce, lemon juice, zest and vanilla extract. Then add the yogurt/oat mixture.
5. Add wet ingredients to dry, stirring just until moistened.
6. Gently fold in strawberries.
7. Fill muffin cups 2/3 full with batter. Bake 20-25 minutes, or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool a few minutes before removing to wire rack to completely cool.
1 muffin has: 67 calories, .5g fat, 9mg cholesterol, 87mg sodium, 13.8g carbohydrates, .8g fiber, 4.3g sugar, 2.1g protein
Slideshow: Healthy Baking Swaps