Banana Walnut Muffins

Alright, I’m back again. As mentioned in a recent post, I said I wouldn’t be baking again until after baby arrived, but yet again, I lied to myself. What’s a girl to do when she has overripe bananas but…Bake! Bake! Bake! And this recipe for Gluten Free Vegan Banana Walnut Muffins was the easiest way to use up those spotty bananas.

Gluten Free Vegan Banana Walnut Muffins-1 | pastelbakery.ca

I totally could have made my favourite banana bread, but wanted to try something slightly different this time around. With swapping the white sugar for pure maple syrup, plus using brown rice, sorghum and buckwheat flours instead of white rice flour, these muffins make a great addition to your breakfast or as a late afternoon snack. Also, no eggs were hurt in the making of these muffins. This is the first time I’ve made muffins using no eggs and I was pleasantly surprised. The muffins turned out fluffy and moist. So if you forgot to buy eggs, you can still make these little treats.

Gluten Free Vegan Banana Walnut Muffins-2 | pastelbakery.ca

Really these muffins should be called Banana Walnut ‘plus anything else you want to throw in to the mix’ Muffins. With the first batch, I threw in some raisins. With the second batch (featured in these pics), I swapped the raisins for shredded coconut. Both tasted great, but surprisingly, I actually preferred the raisins. Probably because the muffins were bursting with tiny pockets of juicy raisins! Now, with the first batch, I also only used 1 banana, so the recipe will work with either 1 or 2 (which is what I used for the second batch). Obviously though, using 2 bananas, will result in a more moist and fluffy muffin. Still; good to know that if you find yourself with 1 lonely overripe banana, this recipe can still be pulled off.

Gluten Free Vegan Banana Walnut Muffins-3 | pastelbakery.ca

Pure deliciousness!
Enjoy,

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Gluten Free Vegan Banana Walnut Muffins

Makes: 12 muffins

These moist & fluffy muffins are easy to make & are perfect for breakfast or as a late afternoon snack.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup brown rice flour
  • 1/2 cup buckwheat flour
  • 1/2 cup sorghum flour
  • 2 tbsp tapioca starch
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 - 2 overripe banana(s)
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup light olive oil
  • 1 tbsp vanilla bean paste
  • 3/4 cup almond milk
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup raisins or shredded coconut

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F and line a muffin tray with liners; set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine dry ingredients; set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, mash banana(s). Whisk in syrup, oil and vanilla.
  4. Add 1/2 of dry mixture and stir until just combined.
  5. Add 1/2 of milk and stir until just combined.
  6. Repeat with remaining dry mixture and milk, then fold in walnuts and raisins/shredded coconut.
  7. Fill liners about 2/3 full and bake for 22 minutes or until centers bounce back when gently touched.
  8. Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
http://www.pastelbakery.ca/gluten-free-vegan-banana-walnut-muffins/

Caramel Apple Spice Muffins

I absolutely love, love, love fall! Fall is my favourite season of all. No crazy humid days where you drip sweat as soon as you walk out the door. The sun is shining just enough to keep you slightly warm as the crisp fall air passes you by. Comfort food, spiced desserts, cozying up under a blanket while watching an in-home movie, and fall fashion (bring on the knee high socks I say!). Love it! All this fall anticipation made me want to indulge in fall treats and so these Gluten Free Dairy Free Caramel Apple Spice Muffins were born.

Gluten Free Dairy Free Caramel Apple Spice Muffins

The beginning of the fall season means apple picking time in Ontario. I remember my parents taking my brother and I apple picking as kids. My favourite part was hitching a ride from the farm wagon which would drive us through the muddy trails and over to the apples which clinged to the trees, patiently waiting to be picked. Feeling a bit nostalgic, I got into full Fall gear and headed to a local organic apple farm with my sister-in-law Mel, (or as some of you may know her, the brains behind Glutrition). What better way to ring in the Fall season than to spend an afternoon picking apples. Or as we called it ‘Superficial Apple Picking’ – only the cute/good looking apples were right for the picking!

Fresh Organic Ontario Apples

I had never been to Organics Farm, but Mel said the apples were great – and they definitely were!  We could also see the farm was expanding their apple tree selection as there were new rows with baby trees. The farm was a busy place that afternoon. It seems everyone took advantage of the great weather we had this first day of Fall.

Organics Farm Organic Apple Farm Ontario

I realize in my previous post I had mentioned I would post a cake recipe to celebrate my one year anniversary, but I just had to give into this fall temptation. And to be honest, I had originally planned on making these into cupcakes, (and we know frosting is a great way to celebrate!), but once they came out of the oven I realized just how great they were on their own sans frosting. They’re decadent but not overly sweet. The best part (aside from devouring these beauties), was baking them. Smells of sweet vanilla and spices, warm apple and rich caramel filled the house – absolute divine!

Gluten Free Dairy Free Caramel Apple Spice Muffins

Which is your favourite season?

Pure deliciousness! Enjoy!
Eva

Note:  If you prefer a less decadent taste, you can omit the caramel from the muffin batter.  Drizzle any extra caramel over the baked muffins once they are completely cooled.

Gluten Free Dairy Free Caramel Apple Spice Muffins

Bake Time: 22 minutes

Makes: about 12 large muffins

These muffins are so moist, filled with fresh apples and homemade dairy free ooey-gooey caramel!

Ingredients

    For Muffins:
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown rice flour
  • 1/2 cup sorghum flour
  • 1/4 cup almond flour
  • 1/4 cup tapioca starch
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp, each ground nutmeg and ground ginger
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup light olive oil
  • 1/2 tbsp vanilla bean paste
  • 1/2 cup almond millk
  • 1 cup peeled and grated apple (about 1 large, best for baking)
  • 2 tbsp homemade dairy free caramel (recipe below)
  • For Dairy Free Caramel:
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1/8 cup almond milk (or more if needed to reach desired consistency)
  • 1 tbsp dairy free margarine/buttery spread

Method

    For Muffins:
  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Line muffin trays with paper liners and set aside.
  2. In large bowl, combine sugar, flours, starch, baking powder and spices. Set aside.
  3. Peel and grate apple; set aside.
  4. In medium bowl, whisk together egg, vanilla and oil. Add half of dry ingredients and half of milk and mix until just combined. Add remaining dry and milk and mix until just combined.
  5. Stir in caramel.
  6. Using spatula, gently fold in grated apples until just combined.
  7. Fill liners 2/3 full. Bake for 22-24 min, or until centers spring back when lightly touched.
  8. Let cool in muffin trays for 5 min before transferring to wire rack to cool completely.
  9. For Dairy Free Caramel:
  10. In a small saucepan over med-high heat, boil water with sugar. Do not stir. If you find the sugar is sticking to the sides of the pan, you can gently rotate the pan over the heat.
  11. Sugar will begin to caramelize once it boils.
  12. Once it reaches a rich amber colour, remove from heat. Be careful not to burn sugar.
  13. Slowly and careful, with your face away from the pan, stream a bit of milk down the side of the pan. Stir until mixed.
  14. Repeat and mix until caramel is creamy.
  15. Stir in dairy free margarine and stir until mixed.
  16. Pour into glass container and set aside until slightly cooled. Store in refrigerator. Can be made ahead. If making the same day you are making muffins, make sure the sauce is completely cooled before adding to muffin batter.
  17. You may find you need to add a bit more milk to reach the desired consistency. To test consistency, I coated the back of a spoon and let it sit for a few seconds. If it drys hard, add a bit more milk (about 1 tsp at a time). If it stays coating the spoon and is gooey, you've got yourself some good dairy free caramel!
http://www.pastelbakery.ca/gluten-free-dairy-free-caramel-apple-spice-muffins/

Mini Chocolate Chip Muffins

Alright; I’ll be the first to admit I’ve been a bit lazy. Well, maybe more than a bit. I really should have posted the recipe for these Gluten Free Dairy Free Mini Chocolate Chip Muffins sooner, but it seems even though my body was physically back from holiday, my brain was not. Shame on me for not posting sooner! Especially since it’s been a year from when I started this blog (whaaa??). Months ago, I had planned on baking up something special to celebrate, but again, Eva no function brain well without, so maybe next post. I do have a test cake in the works which I hope to share with you soon, so what the hey, we’ll call that my celebratory cake. Sound good?

Gluten-Free-Dairy-Free-Mini-Chocolate-Chip-Muffins

As you may recall from my previous post over a month ago (eek!), I had headed to sunny Spain for a much needed holiday. And if you follow me on Twitter you may recall some of these snapshots of the yummy foods I devoured:

GF Food

GF empanada, the most delicious goat cheese I’ve ever had, my new fave chocolate soy pudding and a chocolate soy pudding pop.

A visit to Celicioso Bakery in Madrid

A visit to Celicioso Gluten Free Bakery in Madrid

Sorbet from Dino Gelato and fresh homemade pasta at Il Piccolo Focone, both in Barcelona

Gluten Free Madrid

Metropolis: 1 of my fave buildings in Madrid, plus a tasty burger from Tommy Mel’s in Madrid

and the views my eyes drunk in…my goodness the views!

Town of Dueñas & a view from Mirador de Valcabado

Town of Dueñas & a view from Mirador de Valcabado

Wind Power all throughout Spain

Wind Power all throughout Spain

Sadly I did not get to enjoy the gluten free bocata (aka mega sandwich) I was sooo looking forward to while touring Barcelona. Like many places, it was closed down for summer holidays – bummer. I was surprised to see just how many places were shut down, given many tourists visit this city during the month of August. Anyway, I did get to try out the fresh homemade gluten free pasta at Il Piccolo Focone (fantastic!), and a refreshing sorbet on a gluten free cone from Dino Gelato (delish!) While in Madrid, I enjoyed gluten free cupcakes and cookies during a visit to Celicioso Gluten Free Bakery (scrumptious!), and a tasty burger and fries at Tommy Mel’s (mmm!). Plus all the gluten free goodies picked up at the grocery store and enjoyed while visiting with my parents in their relaxing town. I was definitely on gluten free goodie overload!  I love visiting Spain and I look forward to my ‘every 2 years’ visits. Each time we go, we try to visit a new city (a deal I have with my hubby) and I fall in love all over again. Things seem much simpler there – the food, transportation and life in general. Staple Spanish food is so simple and so delicious, with many options being naturally gluten free! And when it comes to gluten free products in store, the shelves are packed with gluten free goodness at a price that can’t be beat. Everything is clearly labeled, making it easy to see what is safe to eat. *Sigh* I only wish more options like these were readily available here at home.

Gluten-Free-Dairy-Free-Mini-Chocolate-Chip-Muffins

Being drunk on the simple life, it did take me about a week to get back into the baking game. But when I got my butt in gear, I kept it simple and made these Gluten Free Dairy Free Mini Chocolate Chip Muffins. Aside from filling pails with fresh milk and stealing fresh eggs from the chicken coop, another childhood memory of mine while spending my summer in Spain was indulging in the mini muffins the town baker would make. Again, they were very simple but so delicious – just flour, oil, sugar and eggs. I used to love cutting them in half, and spreading Nocilla on each side. For those of you who don’t know, Nocilla is the Spanish version of Nutella (and by the way it’s labeled gluten free!).

gluten Free Nocilla

NOCILLA!

Alas, years ago I had to stop eating these little muffins, seeing how they are not gluten free. And so, this was my attempt at replicating them. And I must say, from what I remember, they’re pretty dead on. Now even though the original muffins did not have chocolate chips, I had to add them, because who could resist Chocolate Mini Chips from Enjoy Life Foods. However, during this trip, upon a visit with my mom to the town baker, I noticed they now have a chocolate chip version as well. I suppose no one can resist a little bit of chocolate! I also noticed the bakery has come a long way from when I was a child. There are so many baked goods available, and they change on a daily basis – from croissants to mini tarts, the options seem endless. It’s nice to see the simple things, such as the muffins I once enjoyed in my younger days, are still around. Guess you can’t mess with a good thing.

Gluten-Free-Dairy-Free-Mini-Chocolate-Chip-MuffinsPure deliciousness!
Eva

Note:
I also made a batch of large muffins. If you choose to make large ones, baking time is noted in the below recipe.
Enjoy!

Gluten Free Dairy Free Mini Chocolate Chip Muffins

Makes: 12 large or 28 mini

Simple and easy, these moist chocolate chip muffins are irresistible!

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cup all purpose gluten free flour
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 cup light olive oil
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1/2 cup (or more) Enjoy Life Chocolate Mini Chips

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 400ºF and prepare muffin trays with liners (large or mini). Set aside.
  2. In medium bowl, combine flour, sugar and baking powder and set aside.
  3. In large bowl, whisk together eggs and oil. Slowly whisk in 1/2 of flour mixture alternating with 1/2 of milk mixture, making sure no lumps are left. Add in remaining flour and milk and mix well.
  4. Stir in mini chips.
  5. Fill liners 2/3 full and place in oven. Bake large muffins for 20 min, and mini muffins for 15 min.
  6. Remove from oven and cool for 2 min in trays before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.
http://www.pastelbakery.ca/gluten-free-dairy-free-mini-chocolate-chip-muffins/