I made these muffins this weekend and my husband said they're my best ever, so I figured I'd better write down the ingredients and share them with you guys. What I absolutely love about making muffins is how easily customizable they are. I usually just throw in whatever I have around, but the combination this time was magical, so I'm excited to share with you. They're fairly healthy (you could easily make them without the chocolate chips, too), and the kids ate them all up quickly.
They're safe for school snacks, too, which is a great bonus.
Best Ever Muffins
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher sea salt
1/3 cup brown sugar
6 tablespoons butter, chopped
the zest of 1 lemon
2 large eggs
4 super ripe bananas
1/3 cup ChipIts chocolate chips (these are safe for nut- and peanut-allergic people)
2/3 cup large flake oats
1/2 cup chopped apple
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Preheat oven to 350°.
In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon, and whisk together.
In another bowl, cream together brown sugar, eggs, lemon zest, and bananas, then add the chopped butter.
Add the wet ingredients into the dry, and combine well.
Add the oats, apple, and cranberries, and mix well.
When fully combined, fill greased muffin tin cups 3/4 full with batter.
Bake for 40 minutes.
Remove from tin and let cool.
(Makes ~18 muffins)
If you have to avoid eggs or other allergens, please see this post for suitable replacement ideas.
And don't forget to make these amazing Mini Egg Shortbread cookies!
Allergies are difficult on all members of the family. They're hard for the person who has to deal with them, they're hard on parents trying to learn about them and keep kids safe, and they're hard on siblings who often get lost in the shuffle while everyone's trying to protect the at-risk family member. More discussions should be happening about the non-allergic siblings of allergic kids, I think.
When my son was born, my daughter was three years old. She previously wore peanut butter facials, had her pick of treats, we ate out in restaurants freely, and never worried about what we'd eat, or where or when. Looking back, I long for that kind of care-free living.
When my son was born and diagnosed with severe allergies, suddenly everything changed.
Where we ate became a huge decision.
The foods we allow in the house are highly restricted.
Activities we do have to be so carefully planned.
Every road trip has lost its spontaneous sparkle.
Easter changed. Christmas changed. Everything changed.
My daughter loves her little brother more than anything in the world, and happily spends her life worrying and caring for him. In the earlier years, so much of our attention focused on this new addition, for so many more reasons than are normal when a new baby arrives. We managed this as best as we could.
My daughter is her little brother's protector, best friend, and superhero. She changed his diapers, dressed him, cheered him on, and loves him to the end of the earth. She reads to him, teaches him, watches out for him, and rarely leaves his side.
They are now 7 and 4 years old, and just lately—I don't know if it's the gloomy weather or the years of responsibility—things are shifting between my kids. I hear my daughter wistfully remembering her peanut butter on toast days. Her patience wears thin when I have to carefully read labels on something she wants to buy at the grocery store. She asks to go places she knows we can't take her brother. She seems to be short on patience with accommodating her little bro, and I'm honestly not surprised. It's been four solid years of altering her wishes for this kid.
We're so lucky that she's such an empathetic, mature child, but I admit, we've dropped the ball on attending to her needs. Things have been vastly unequal in the attention department, and before resentment builds, I want to make sure we care for her needs as much as those of her brother.
So, here's what we'll be implementing:
1. Special days for just her and one of us, where she gets to choose whatever she'd like to do.
2. Treat days where we'll go out and she can eat all the nut products she wants.
3. Attention for her in the same way as it's given to her brother, even if not in the same (worried) manner.
I don't want to neglect her in our mission to keep her brother alive. And I certainly don't want to do any damage to the wonderful, strong, totally adorable relationship they have together.
To help your child get a better understanding of his/her sibling's food allergies, here are some books about severe food allergies for children of all ages.
And check out these 25 important questions to ask your child's allergist.
When you can't eat the food you used to love, it's nuts how often you think about it. You also discover a willingness to shell out for the more expensive alternatives just to get a fix for the cravings because anything else simply walnut do. Oh man, totally cracking myself up here. I feel like Lisa would be really proud of my puntastic opening lines, but I digress.
My point is that when we had to remove nuts from our home because of my son's life-threatening allergies, I found that I really missed those kinds of flavours. No more peanut butter on toast, no more Thai peanut curry sauces, or almonds in my salads. What I also found was that soy and sunflower butter replacements are actually really, really yummy.
We use WOWButter (absolutely not sponsored) primarily and in most recipes, it's the perfect replacement for peanut butter. It even works in peanut butter cookies, and is totally safe for peanut- and nut-allergic folks.
Today I'm sharing two of my favourite chicken recipes that I hope you all love, too!
"Can't Believe It's Not Peanut Butter" Chicken Fingers
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into strips
4 cups crushed corn flake cereal
4 eggs, whisked
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp ground pepper
1/2 cup milk (can be replaced with milk alternative like soy or rice milk if necessary)
3/4 cup peanut butter replacement (I use WOWButter)
Preheat oven to 350.
Add salt and pepper to flour, and whisk together.
Combine milk and WOWButter until creamy.
Dredge chicken through the flour, then into the eggs.
Coat the strips well in the WOWButter/milk mixture.
Coat in crushed Corn Flakes.
Place strips on parchment paper-lined baking sheet and when all the strips are coated, bake for 30 minutes, or until chicken is thoroughly cooked.
Serve with dipping sauces like honey-mustard (make your own by combining regular yellow mustard and honey, or even dijon and honey) or ranch dip.
"Can't Believe It's Not Peanut Butter" Chicken Satay
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into pieces
3 tbs soy sauce
3 tbs honey
1/2 cup WOWButter
Preheat oven to 350 or start up the grill.
Put pieces of chicken onto wooden skewers
Combine WOWButter, soy sauce and honey until smooth
Dip the chicken into the mixture, covering each piece well
Lay coated chicken skewers on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet
Bake for 25 minutes or until chicken is thoroughly cooked. Flip over after 15 minutes. If grilling, timing may be slightly shorter. Be attentive to be sure the honey in the sauce doesn't start burning.
Makes 12 skewers.
These are also awesome with a honey dipping sauce!