These last 2 weeks my Facebook feed has been absolutely flooded with adorable pictures of all of my friend’s children heading back to school. It’s been a busy two weeks, so many kiddies headed off to Kindy for the first time or Year 1 and so many of my mummy friends were saddened by the fact that their ‘babies’ are all growning up! I can’t even imagine what it will be like once my own munchkin heads off to Kindy… god knows what I’ll be like! I struggle just handing him off to my Mum while I go get my hair done.
One thing I do understand, as all of my mummy friends do, is the struggle to feed your children healthy and nutritious food. Mister L may only be almost 10 months old but he eats like a champ and as we’ve been doing Baby Led Weaning (more on that another day) he eats a big variety of foods. Gotta say it can be hard sometimes to come up with healthy yummy foods that he will actually eat ….. for more than one day that is and then decides he doesn’t like it anymore! So it only makes me wonder what it will be like once he’s at school and I’ll have to enter the never-ending”What to put in the lunch box today!” fight.
So in honour of all my School Mummy’s heading back into that ring, here is my Yummy Healthy Carrot & Date Muffins. These have been a hit with kids and adults alike, it’s even been approved by the hubby! There are so many pro’s to these muffins too.
No refined sugar.
They can easily be made gluten free or nut free.
And best of all they freeze and defrost awesomely, so you can chuck a frozen one in a lunchbox (or your lunch!) and it’ll be defrosted in time for morning tea/recess.
Oh and they taste pretty great too!
So if you’re struggling to find something to snack on or looking for something to pop into the lunch box why not whip up a batch of these this weekend!
Yummy Healthy Carrot & Date Muffins
2 Small Carrots, grated (Or 1 medium/large sized one)
1 Cup Plain Flour (gluten free can be easily used here however I don’t recommend coconut flour)
1 Cup Almond Meal
2 tsp Baking Powder (gluten free if applicable)
1/2 Cup Walnuts, chopped
1 Cup Dates
1/4 Cup Olive Oil (coconut oil can also be subbed in here)
1 tsp Ground Cinnamon
1 tsp All Spice
1 tsp Apple Cider Vinegar
1/2 tsp Salt
Preheat your oven to 180º and line a muffin tray with your choice of pretty patty cases. (I always go for basic paper so to make reheating a cinch.)
In a large bowl grate your carrots and on top of that throw in the flour, almond meal, baking powder and loosely chopped walnuts. Stir till everything is combined just lightly.
In a food processor (or blender) pop all of your dates in and pulse for few seconds at a time or until the dates break down and start to come together. Be wary as this makes a fair amount of noise…. so don’t attempt while the baby is asleep! Once blitzed add in the banana, olive oil, eggs, cinnamon, all spice, apple cider vinegar and salt. Blitz again until all of the ingredients come together and form a lumpy liquid.
Pour the blended ingredients into the dry/carrot mix and fold through. Now to create a nice bit of lift in your muffins you need to pop the mix aside for 5 minutes or more. I would suggest not leaving for more than 15 minutes but a few extra won’t hurt it. You’ll notice after a few minutes the mixture will thicken and kind of fluff up a little.
Start transferring heaped tablespoons of the mixture into your patty cases without trying to over work the mixture. The batter stretches a lot further once fluffy so you may even have enough for another couple of muffins. I just go back and add the excess to the others to create a larger muffin….. or I just eat it. Yeah… I mainly eat it! Who doesn’t love to taste their batter before it cooks?
Now pop your tray into the oven for 25-30 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. The tops of the muffins should go a nice cracked golden brown once done. Transfer to a wire rack to cool straight away.
The muffins will last 5 days or so in an air tight container, or alternatively wrap them individually in cling wrap and pop them straight into the freezer (once they’ve cooled of course). To defrost just pull out of the freezer and pop straight into a lunchbox and by recess they will have returned to perfect room temp. Or unwrap from the cling wrap and patty case while frozen and pop onto a plate and microwave for 30 seconds. Serve with lashings of butter and a hot cup of coffee!
Not a bad afternoon treat if I do say so myself. And you won’t feel bad giving them to the kids either… though I’d prefer to keep them all for me. It’s a darn shame I let my husband try them, now he eats them as fast as I do!
Serves: 12 medium muffins
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25-30 minutes