Apple-Peanut Butter Oat Muffins

Cupcakes and Muffins, Vegan

apple-peanut-butter-oat-muffins

Adapted from Happy Herbivore by Lindsay S. Nixon

As you look at the list of ingredients, you may not expect much from these muffins. However, believe me when I say that they are a perfectly delicious autumn treat! I love how they are bursting with chunky apple and oats and have just a hint of peanut butter. They are really quick to make too!

Yields 12 muffins

Ingredients:

  • 1 red apple (about 1 cup)
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • ½ cup old-fashioned oats
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ cup pure maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • ¼ cup water
  • 2 tablespoons almond milk
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F (177C). Line a muffin tin with muffin cups and set aside.
  2. Core and dice the apple and measure out 1 cup.
  3. In a mixing bowl, whisk the flour, oats, baking powder and baking soda together. Add the diced apple and set aside.
  4. Add the maple syrup, vanilla, water, almond milk and banana to the bowl of a food processor and whiz until smooth.
  5. Pour the banana mixture into the flour-apple mixture and stir a few times until mostly combined. Add the peanut butter and stir until just combined. If the batter looks too dry (depends on the apple’s juiciness), add a little more milk.
  6. Spoon the batter evenly into the muffin tin. Bake in the preheated oven for about 15-20 minutes.

 

Comments: The original recipe actually called for rolled oats; as usual, I didn’t have them and substituted them for the old-fashioned oats. You can use any kind of milk in place of the almond milk. The banana does not have to be full of brown spots; mine was just ripe, slightly past the “perfect eating phase” (when they are bright yellow). For the peanut butter, I used Trader Joe’s Organic Creamy, No Salt Peanut Butter (my favorite). I would highly recommend using a similar one whose ingredients are only peanuts. For the muffin cups, I would highly recommend using the aluminum or silicone ones because of the whole wheat. You can also grease the muffin tin instead and not use cups.

apple-peanut-butter-oat-muffins-close-up

Greek Yogurt Pumpkin Muffins

Cupcakes and Muffins

greek-yogurt-pumpkin-muffins

Adapted from voskos.com

Here’s the final recipe for today (find the two portobello ones here and here). Finally pumpkin season is back. Trader Joe’s already has its magnificent Pumpkin O’s as well as several other pumpkin products. Autumn leaves and colors are everywhere you look. Autumn isn’t autumn without some pumpkin recipes. Am I right? Of course I am! Here’s my first one for this year. I was about to head off to college in a little over a week and I had a huge tub of Greek yogurt in my fridge that I didn’t think I would be able to finish before I left. So I decided to use them in muffins or a bread. I found this recipe that also satisfied my longing and craving for anything pumpkin.

Yields 12 muffins

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 cup and 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 cup pumpkin purée (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon almond milk

greek-yogurt-pumpkin-muffins-plato-lado

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325F (163C). Grease a muffin tin and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and cinnamon.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, maple syrup, Greek yogurt, pumpkin purée olive oil and almond milk.
  4. Add the yogurt mixture to the dry ingredients and mix until well incorporated.
  5. Divide the batter evenly between the muffin cups.
  6. Bake for about 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Cool for five minutes in the muffin tin before removing.

 

Comments: I just love the warm feeling of autumn spices and pumpkin; it warms your soul, truly. These muffins were not particularly sweet though still good. To make them a little sweeter, you can sprinkle some turbinado sugar on top before baking to create a crunchy top. I also had mine warm and topped with dulce de leche; the dulce de leche melted and impregnated the muffin, creating a delicious mélange of flavors. They may also be good with some Nutella though I haven’t tried it. I also liked an idea the website mentioned of replacing cornbread with these muffins; I think these muffins could be a great addition to any meal on a chilly, autumn night.

greek-yogurt-pumpkin-muffins-plato-mordido

Magdalenas de dulce de leche

5 O'Clock Tea, Cupcakes and Muffins

(Dulce de Leche Muffins)

Magdalenas de dulce de leche

Adapted and translated from directoalpaladar.com

Here we arrive at another sticky spot. What’s the difference between a magdalena and a muffin? Both have a similar shape and essentially the same ingredients though in different proportions. Muffins, in general, have more butter and less baking powder; the batter for the magdalenas is beaten more so the magdalenas tend to be more spongy and fluffy. I don’t know if I prefer one over the other as I like both and they each bring back their own memories in my mind. Background aside, as a good Argentinean, I love dulce de leche and one day I thought “I wonder if there are any recipes for magdalenas de dulce de leche.” I searched online and found this recipe. Hope you enjoy!

Yields 8 magdalenas

Ingredients:

  • 85 grams unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 40 grams brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 60 grams dulce de leche + extra for topping
  • 100 grams flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

Magdalenas de dulce de leche II

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F (180C). Line a muffin tin with muffin cups.
  2. Using an electric mixer, beat the butter with the sugar until well combined.
  3. Beat in the egg and later add the milk and dulce de leche while continuing to beat.
  4. Add the sifted flour and baking powder. Fold in using a spatula until well combined.
  5. Fill the prepared muffin cups with the batter. Top with a teaspoonful of dulce de leche.
  6. Bake in the preheated oven for about 15 minutes. They will have risen and will be slightly golden; a toothpick inserted in the middle will come out clean or with a few crumbs attached.

 

Comments: This is an incredibly simple recipe that you can easily whip up in under a half hour for a good after school or weekend snack. They are great warm, straight out of the oven. They are not exceedingly sweet, which was something I feared since my mom tends to not like overly sweet things. Because of this, I did not fill them with more dulce de leche but you can when you are filling the muffin cups with the batter and before topping them with dulce de leche. You can always spread some more dulce de leche right before eating them. They are VERY spongy and soft. I have some suggestions for dulce de leche brands. My favorite (La Salamandra) no longer exists, unfortunately. I think my second favorite would be Havanna. My mom’s favorite is San Ignacio but there’s also La Serenísima and Sancor. If you’re in the U.S., World Market also sells one that’s called Gaucho Ranch from Miami, which is decent. Trader Joe’s also sells one imported from Spain that I haven’t tried. Keep in mind that the latter two are not Argentinean. Whatever you do, DON’T buy cajeta, which is from Mexico and made with goat’s milk; it tastes completely different.

Magdalenas de dulce de leche, uno

Vegan Chocolate Chip Muffins

Cupcakes and Muffins, Vegan

Vegan Chocolate Chip Muffins

Adapted from Happy Herbivore by Lindsay S. Nixon

What do you do when you have overly ripe bananas that smell and look too disgusting to eat? Well…you can always blend them in a smoothie…or how about baking? You can always go with the classic banana bread but a lot of other recipes, especially vegan baking, use bananas as well. I loved these muffins with their chocolatey banana taste.

Yields 12 muffins

Ingredients:

  • 1 ¾ cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • ½ cup of almond milk
  • 2 very ripe bananas
  • ¼ cup unsweetened applesauce
  • ½ cup chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F (177C). Line a muffin tin with muffin cups and set aside.
  2. In a mixing bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder and sugar together.
  3. In a food processor or blender, combine the milk with the bananas until smooth. Pour into the flour mixture. Stir a few times, add the applesauce and stir until mostly combined.
  4. Gently fold in the chocolate chips, stirring until just combined.
  5. Bake for about 15 to 20 minutes or until the muffins are golden, fir m to the touch and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

 

Comments: Very ripe bananas are perfect for baking as they will gave the baked goods a banana taste as well as sweetness. This recipe is mostly sweetened by the bananas I used almond milk but you can use any nondairy milk if you are vegan or just regular milk if you aren’t. The originally recipe has 1 tablespoon of vanilla as well; I didn’t use any because I somehow didn’t have vanilla at home (the horror!). I used regular chocolate chips, which is what I had at home but if you are vegan use the vegan ones. Since this is vegan baking and uses whole wheat flour, the muffins won’t rise as much as regular ones and they will be denser, not as fluffy. I highly recommend these muffins; they were really good!

Vegan Chocolate Chip Muffins, mordido

Whole Wheat Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Greek Yogurt Muffins

Cupcakes and Muffins, Sin categoría

Whole Wheat Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Greek Yogurt Muffins

Adapted from ambitious kitchen.com

How much longer before you get tired of my pumpkin recipes? I’m sorry but you are just going to have to deal with it. Pumpkin season is not over yet and I am making the most out of it. Here are some yummy muffins to warm up your day!

Yields 12 muffins

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • Pinch of cloves
  • 1 cup pumpkin purée (not pumpkin pie mix!)
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/3 cup almond milk
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F (177C). Grease a 12-cup muffin tin and set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and cloves.
  3. In a large bowl, mix the pumpkin, honey, egg, oil, vanilla, yogurt and milk until well combined, smooth and creamy.
  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Gently fold in the chocolate chips.
  5. Divide the batter evenly into the prepared muffin tin. Bake in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted int he middle comes out clean or with a few crumbs attached. Cool the muffins for 5 minutes and then remove them from the tin.

 

Comments: The muffins themselves aren’t all that sweet but the chocolate chips add all the sweetness you could want. The muffins do come out deliciously moist and soft due to the yogurt and pumpkin. They’re pretty quick to whip up (30-40 minutes total). Do not use muffin liners; whole wheat muffins tend to stick to them and you don’t want pieces of paper in your muffins! You can easily make the muffins gluten free by using all-purpose gluten free flour instead of whole wheat. You can also make them vegan by replacing the egg with 1 flax egg, using applesauce instead of Greek yogurt and using vegan chocolate chips. They are best hot out of the oven. You can reheat any leftover muffins in the microwave for about 20 seconds.

Whole Wheat Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Greek Yogurt Muffins, uno

 

Double-Chocolate Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

Cupcakes and Muffins

Penguin Cupcake, terminados 2

 

A year ago, my friend, knowing how much I love to bake, gave me a penguin cupcake kit for Christmas. I never got the opportunity to use it. However, I thought this year’s (or last year’s) New Year’s Party was the perfect opportunity to use it. No better way to say good-bye to the old year with a delicious chocolate cupcake with white frosting, right? Happy New Year! May you all be successful in your 2015 endeavors (which must include these cupcakes).

 Penguin Cupcake Kit

Double-Chocolate Cupcakes

Adapted from Cooking Light: Best Baking Recipes

Makes about 24 cupcakes

Ingredients:

  • 9 oz all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 1/3 cup sugar
  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 8 egg whites
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup 1% low-fat buttermilk
  • 2 ½ oz dark chocolate, finely chopped (I used Guittard 64%)

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F (177C).
  2. Combine the flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt. Stir with a whisk.
  3. Beat the sugar and butter in a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium speed until well combined. Add the egg whites and vanilla, beating well. Add the flour mixture and buttermilk alternately to the sugar mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Fold in the chocolate.
  4. Spoon the batter into muffin cups lined with muffin cup liners.
  5. Bake in the preheated oven for about 18 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  6. Remove from the pan and cool completely.

Penguin Cupcakes, unfrosted 3

Penguin Cupcakes, unfrosted

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

Adapted from Southern Living December 2012

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 1/8 tsp of salt
  • 16 oz of confectioner’s sugar
  • 3 tbsp milk
  • 1/2 tbsp vanilla

Directions:

  1. Beat the butter and salt at medium speed with an electric mixer for 1 to 2 minutes until creamy.
  2. Gradually add the confectioner’s sugar alternately with the milk, beating at low speed until blended and smooth after each addition.
  3. Stir in vanilla.
  4. Use immediately.

Penguin Cupcakes, frostedPenguin Cupcakes, frosted 3

 

 

 

 

 

 

Assembling the Cupcakes

Ingredients:

  • Double-Chocolate Cupcakes (recipe above)
  • Vanilla Buttercream Frosting (recipe above)
  • Decorations of your choice

Directions:

  1. Once the cupcakes have cooled completely, use a frosting piper or piping bag to top the cupcakes with the frosting. You may also use a knife or spatula if you prefer.
  2. Top the frosted cupcakes with any decoration you desire.
  3. Most importantly, enjoy and indulge!

 

Comments: I was very happy with how these cupcakes turned out. They were spongy and delicate. The chocolate pieces gave them the perfect final touch. The frosting is the same one I used for the Christmas white cake. Everyone loved the cupcakes and thought the penguins were very cute. I actually ended up with 27 cupcakes, and, even though I had made half of the recipe, I had leftover frosting.

Penguin Cupcakes, terminados

Gluten-Free Yellow Cupcakes with Chocolate Frosting (Cat-Shaped)

Cupcakes and Muffins

Frosted Gluten-Free Yellow Cupcakes

Gluten-Free Yellow Cupcakes

Adapted from Allrecipes

It was my friend’s birthday and, baking being my specialty, I wanted to make a delicious, edible treat for her. She is gluten intolerant, so I had to keep that in mind when searching for recipes.

Makes about 18 cupcakes

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cups Brown rice flour
  • ¾ cup tapioca flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp xanthan gum
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 ¼ cups white sugar
  • 2/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F (175C).
  2. Mix the brown rice flour, tapioca flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder and xanthan gum together. Set aside.
  3. Mix the eggs, sugar and mayonnaise until fluffy. Add the flour mixture and mix well. Mix in the milk and vanilla.
  4. Spoon the batter into paper-lined muffin pans.
  5. Bake in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  6. Cool completely and frost.

 

Comments: These cupcakes, though gluten-free, taste like regular cupcakes. They are spongy and soft, and no, they do not taste like mayonnaise. The batter will be more liquidy than normal cupcakes, but do not worry. You can spread with the chocolate frosting below or with your favorite. The original recipe is for 2 8- or 9-inch round cakes; if you makes cakes, they have to bake them for about 25 minutes.

 

 

Gluten-Free Yellow Cupcakes

 

 

Chocolate Frosting

Adapted from Baking: From my home to yours by Dorie Greenspan

Ingredients:

  • 3 oz semisweet chocolate
  • 3 tbsp butter at room temperature
  • 3 tbsp confectioner’s sugar

Directions:

  1. Melt the chocolate in the microwave according to the directions on the package.
  2. With a wire whisk, mix in the butter 1 tablespoon at a time.
  3. Sift the sugar into the bowl with the chocolate mixture and stir well.
  4. Let the frosting cool for about 10 minutes, allowing it to thicken.

 

Comments: At first, the frosting will look quite liquidy, almost like a ganache, but if you allow it to sit for a while, it will become more spreadable. This recipe does not yield a lot of frosting but it was the perfect amount for the cat cupcakes I made (directions below). If you are not decorating the cupcakes or want a thicker layer of frosting, you might want to double or triple the quantities.

 

 

Chocolate Frosting

 

 

Cat Cupcakes

Adapted from Taste of Home

My friend is cat-obsessed. I have given her many cat-themed things, and cat cupcakes sounded perfect for her birthday.

Ingredients:

  • Baked cupcakes (recipe above)
  • Chocolate frosting (recipe above)
  • Oreo cookies, quartered
  • M&Ms
  • Black rope licorice

Directions:

  1. Once you have frosted the cupcakes, insert two Oreo quarters onto each cupcake for ears.
  2. Add M&Ms for eyes (I used yellow, green, blue and red). Then add brown M&Ms for the nose.
  3. Cut the licorice pieces into thirds and place 2 thirds on each side of the nose for whiskers.

 

Comments: These cat cupcakes ended up looking really cute and my friend was really happy. The original recipe calls for yellow jelly beans for the eyes and black jelly beans for the noses, but I prefer M&MS.

Cat Cupcakes