Spinach in a muffin!?!? You probably think I’m crazy for suggesting it but these are really good. As some of you already know, one of my favourite things to do is to hide healthy ingredients into normal lesser healthy recipes. I have no idea why, it’s just really funny to me. (I also love hiding onions in things and feeding them to people who say they “hate” onions, but that’s a story for another day!) The rich cocoa does an amazing job of camouflaging the dark green spinach flecks – nobody needs to know and it will be our little secret.
The recipe I’m sharing with you today is one that I’ve had kicking around for a few years now and I call them “brownie” muffins because they are a lot like those little one bite brownies you can get from the grocery store, except these are full of healthy spinach, apples and bananas.*
You definitely need a food processor or blender to create these so that you can puree the fruit and vegetables.
I’ve used whole wheat flour, but I think you could probably substitute any kind of flour you are into these days to meet the dietary needs of your family.
¾ cup whole wheat flour
1 cup rolled oats, pulsed through the food processor until they’re like a fine powder
1 cup cocoa powder
1 tbsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
3 cups packed baby spinach leaves
2 small gala apples, quartered
2 ripe bananas
½ cup liquid coconut oil
½ cup almond or coconut milk
½ cup agave syrup or other sweetener you’re into
2 large eggs
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1 cup semi-sweet mini chocolate chips
Preheat your oven to 350F and prepare mini muffin tins with non-stick cooking spray and set aside. In a large mixing bowl, combine dry ingredients including the ground oats, and set aside.
In the food processor, combine all of the other ingredients and pulse until liquefied. The more you chop up the fruit and vegetables, the harder it will be for little humans to detect any suspect ingredients. I don’t even core the apples when I put them into the food processor – everything gets ground down pretty well. Pour the green liquid into the bowl containing your dry ingredients and stir to combine and then fold in the chocolate chips.
Divide the batter into the mini muffin tins. I probably overfill them a bit, but I like them to puff up over the edges because they look cuter that way. Bake for about 17 to 20 minutes – every oven is different, so start checking around 17 minutes – you’ll see the batter separate slightly from the tin and a toothpick will come out relatively dry. This recipe will give you about four dozen moist chocolatey muffins. They freeze really well, so when you are having a little chocolate craving, pull one out of the freezer and microwave for a few seconds.
*a version of this recipe appeared on my old Red Deer Foodie Blog in 2012