Cherry-Almond Quinoa Muffins

 

I used to make muffins a lot but I’ve gotten out of the habit.  I love them and homemade muffins are something I tend to overeat.  But I came across this really interesting recipe from Veganomicon for muffins that have quinoa in them that I had been meaning to try for a while.  They got several good review so I finally decided to make them.  I changed up a few things but they came out so good!  I really love the quinoa texture they have.  And they are very low sugar and all whole-grain~ very healthy for a muffin.

The original recipe says it makes 12 but I have a larger size muffin pan so mine made 6.

Cherry-Almond Quinoa Muffins

(Adapted from Vegan Almond-Quinoa Muffins by Veganominon)

  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla soy milk
  • 1 tablespoon ground flax seeds
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons almond extract
  • 1 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup almonds
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon (or less) sea salt
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1 cup frozen cherries (I cut them in halves)

Directions:

  • Preheat the oven to 350.
  • Whisk the ground flax seeds with the soy milk in a mixing bowl and let sit for a few minutes.
  • Place the rolled oats, almonds, sea salt and baking powder in the food processor and blend until it is resembles flour.
  • Whisk the rest of the wet ingredients (applesauce, maple syrup and almond extract) in with the soy milk/flax .
  • With a large spoon, stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients.
  • Finally fold in the quinoa and cherries (I saved a few cherries to put on top before baking).
  • Spoon into the muffin pan (I lined mine with wrappers).
  • Bake for about 30 minutes, let cool and carefully remove from muffin tin.  If you are using a smaller 12-muffin pan, they will cook in less time so check after 20 minutes.

Suggestion:  I think slivered almonds and/0r chocolate chips would be an excellent addition to these!  Cherry-chip, mmmmm.  Try blueberries, bananas or raspberries.         Or go for dried fruit– the original recipe called for dried apricots or currants along with cinnamon and cardamom.

 

 

 

 

 

Note:  I thought the batter seemed wetter than muffin batter normally seems.  This is apparently okay.  I tried a second batch upping the oats to 2 cups and substituting chia seeds for flax:

 

 

 

 

 

 

You can see they look a little chunkier; the top is less smooth.  The batter was definitely thicker and I also used whole cherries– the whole 10 oz bag.  They were still good but drier than my first batch and less sweet.  If you do want to add more oat flour to thicken the batter I would suggest also adding a little more maple syrup.  But the first batch wins, hands down.

Now that my kitchen is overrun with cherry muffins (not to mention my belly), I am going to put the last few in the freezer to save for future reheating.  Interesting how I say I don’t want to see another muffin for a very long time but give me a day or two and they’ll be calling my name again.

And now for a few health benefits of cherries from Jonny Bowden’s The 100 Healthiest Foods on Earth

Cherries:

  • are a source of ellagic acid which has been shown to inhibit tumor growth.
  • contain quercetin which is a cancer fighting and anti-inflammatory flavonoid.
  • have been shown to lower levels of uric acid which is related to gout pain.
  • contain anthocyanins which give cherries their bright red color and are helpful in relieving inflammation along with reducing the risk of certain cancers.
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