Low Sugar, Whole Grain Blueberry Orange Muffins
I have a complicated relationship with muffins.
I remember when I was in high school, a study came out by the Center for Science in the Public Interest that alerted consumers to the finding that bakery muffins were as unhealthy for you as donuts.
I was stoked.
This meant that when my friends and I ended up at Dunkin’ Donuts during open lunch, I shouldn’t order the bran muffin. I should order the chocolate cream-filled powdered donut.
And then there’s that whole “Muffin” nickname of mine as a kid. Abbreviated versions to be shouted during high school and college sporting events by my well-intentioned mother.
Bless her heart.
As a home cook, my more recent conflict has been the question, “What’s the difference between a muffin and a cupcake?”
The answer for me was simply, “Frosting.” (Which not-so-coincidentally happens to be the best part of a cupcake.)
That is, frosting was the difference until now.
Because I’ve discovered that with a true muffin, a muffin that I would feel good about giving my kids for breakfast, about packing in a lunch box or baking up for an afterschool snack, the difference between a muffin and a cupcake should be in the type of flour used and perhaps even more importantly, in sugar.
(Yup, I said the S-word again.)
But the real question is, is there such a muffin? One that is whole grain and low in sugar?
And the question that inevitably follows, is it even edible?
These muffins have been just that: breakfast, lunchbox treats, afterschool gap fillers and soon-to-be road trip snacks.
Because with all those sugar savings, when we’re finishing up our book tour in Seattle this weekend, we’ll have room for a celebratory treat.
Perhaps a chocolate cream-filled powdered donut.
Blueberry Orange Muffins
Adapted from this recipe
Makes 1 dozen muffins
****View Nutrition Facts**** <—again, seriously impressive!
- 3/4 c. oat flour (gluten-free, if necessary)
- 3/4 c. whole wheat pastry flour*
- 1 T. baking powder
- 1/2 t. salt
- 1/2 t. cinnamon
- 1/4 t. allspice
- 2 organic eggs OR 1/2 c. unsweetened applesauce
- 2 T. honey or maple syrup
- 1 t. vanilla extract
- 1/4 c. organic butter or coconut oil, melted
- 3/4 c. orange juice
- 1 T. orange zest
- 1 c. blueberries, frozen or fresh
*To make these muffins gluten-free, substitute 3/4 c. all purpose gluten free flour OR and additional 3/4 c. oat flour.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a muffin tin with paper liners or spray with nonstick cooking spray.
In a bowl, mix together the flours, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and allspice. Set aside.
In a separate bowl, combine eggs or applesauce, honey or maple syrup, vanilla, butter or oil, and orange juice.
Gently pour wet ingredients into flour mixture and stir until just combined. Fold in orange zest.
Fill the cups in your prepared muffin pan 2/3 to 3/4 full. Top each muffin with 1/12 of the berries, pressing them down into the batter.
Bake for 13-17 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Eat immediately and store leftover muffins in a air-tight container in the fridge. These also freeze beautifully!