Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Get Movin' Muffins

Because of busy lifestyles and time constraints, many people skip their morning meal. And when there are a few minutes to spare, fast food is often the only option. These food choices are usually loaded with calories and sugar. For example, a Cinnabon cinnamon roll contains over 800 calories and 32g of fat and a sausage biscuit from Chik-fil-a will cost you 590 calories and 41g of fat. Sure, these breakfast items will fill you up for a while; but due to an induced carbohydrate or sugar overload, a crash is soon to follow.

This raisin bran muffin recipe makes a quick, healthy breakfast to take on the go. The recipe makes enough batter for 36 muffins but the average household does not need 3 dozen muffins at one time. The solution: Make the batter, bake as many muffins as you would like, and store the rest in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 weeks. Since it only takes 20 minutes to cook a batch, you can have fresh, healthy muffins in no time at all. While these raisin bran muffins are chocked full of nutrition, the average muffin is far from healthy. Many muffins sound nutritious because their titles include words such as "Blueberry, Banana, Carrot, or Wheat". The truth is that although they do contain such labeled fruits, vegetables, or grains, they also have a fair share of sugar and fat that is not advertised. Another problem with commercially baked muffins is their jumbo size. Muffins have tripled in size over the years, also tripling the amount of calories and making a single muffin close to a third of daily recommended caloric intake. If you were to examine a nutrition facts label of a prepackaged muffin, you would likely find that the serving size is 1/2 of the muffin. This type of labeling is deceptive, often leaving the consumer to believe that they have only eaten half the amount of calories upon devouring the entire pastry.

My recipe is adapted from the back of Hodgson Mills Wheat Bran box and contains only complex carbohydrates. Typically I like to substitute sugar with a calorie-free sweetener and butter with a reduced-fat margarine. When baking, these substitutions do not yield an equal product so sugar and butter are necessary, but in such small amounts they are fine (Remember the recipe makes 36 muffins). I will have later posts with muffins that are sugar-free and fat-free. These are tender, delicious, and healthy. The muffins can be paired with a piece of fruit or yogurt for a complete breakfast that will keep you full and energized until your next meal.

Get Movin' Muffins
Serves 36

3 cups unprocessed wheat bran
1 cup boiling water
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup butter
2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 eggs, beaten
2 cups fat free buttermilk
2 cups raisins

1. Mix 1 cup wheat bran with 1 cup boiling water; stir and let water absorb into bran.
2. In a separate bowl blend sugar and butter.
3. Measure and combine flour, baking soda, and salt.
4. Combine the moist bran with the beaten eggs, the remaining 2 cups of bran, buttermilk, blended sugar-butter mixture, and the flour, soda and salt. Stir until well combined. Mix-in raisins gently.
5. At this point you can place the batter in the fridge for future use or bake at once.
6. When preparing to bake, preheat oven to 400 degrees.
7. Stir batter well and spoon into prepared muffin tins.
8. Bake for 15 minutes and store the extra batter in an air-tight container in the refrigerator.

Nutrition: 120 calories, 22g carbohydrates, 3g protein, 3g fat, 3g fiber

***You can also make these muffins without raisins to reduce the carbs and sugar content.
Nutrition (w/out raisins): 94 calories, 16g carbohydrate, 3g protein, 3g fat, 3g fiber

Photos credited to Jennifer Oetting


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About Lauren


Nutrition student with a passion for giving yummy recipes a healthy make-over. Future RD on a constant search for the best food finds. And new blogger trying to relay my tasty ideas to everyone else.

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