Emerald Muffins

In Apps, Snacks & Drinks, Family-friendly by Frances Largeman-Roth

 

Makes 16 servings | Prep Time: 10 mins | Cook Time: 20 min

I’ll tell you a secret. Even when you’re a nutritionist, your kids won’t necessarily eat their veggies. Each of my kids likes a few vegetables, which we keep in rotation. But I’m always working toward expanding their repertoire and packing their diet full of nutrient-dense food.

Spinach is totally a super hero food. It’s loaded with iron, a nutrient that’s vital for kids’ growth. But spinach is one of those foods that’s just not that easy for little kids to eat. If it’s fresh, they have to stab it with a fork. If it’s cooked, the texture is kind of weird and it tastes better with lots of garlic–which your kid may also not go for. But muffins–now that’s a much easier vehicle for some green stuff!

Baby spinach is quite sweet and I’ve packed a whole three cups of it into these muffins. They are perfect for St. Patrick’s Day or on any occasion where green is a thing, like the first day of spring, Earth Day, etc. Ask your kid to help blend up the ingredients. If they’ve helped you make something, they’re much more likely to eat it. True story! If they don’t like the crunchy almonds on top, you can leave them plain or sprinkle a few extra chocolate chips on top. 

If you’re a breastfeeding mom, these muffins provide another bonus. They are  packed with natural galactagogues—substances that can increase milk supply. Spinach, oats and almonds are all foods that have anecdotally helped many women increase their milk supply. Either way, they’re super tasty and nutrient-packed! 

3 cups fresh baby spinach
3/4 cup almond milk
2 eggs
2  extra ripe bananas
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup melted ghee or coconut oil
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup white flour
3/4 cup rolled oats
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup dried cherries
1/4 cup chopped almonds

  1. Spray a 12-cup muffin pan with nonstick cooking spray and set aside. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. Blend spinach with milk, eggs, bananas, vanilla and oil or ghee in blender.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the flours, oats, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, brown sugar, chocolate chips and dried cherries. Fold the spinach mixture into the dry mixture. Pour batter evenly into the prepared pan and top with the chopped almonds. Note: You’ll have a little batter left over to make about 4 additional muffins. When the first batch comes out, just pop them out and fill with remaining batter. Or you can fill cupcake liners and bake separately on a baking sheet. 
  4. Bake for 20-22 minutes, until muffins are set and dry to the touch. Muffins can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.