Ok, so maybe the title of muffins is a bit misleading…more of a cross between a cookie and a muffin.
A crispy exterior and a buttery, crumbly interior.
I wanted to make some mini muffins for my kids, because let’s face it; everything is more fun to eat when it’s mini. I also wanted to use some healthy fats (avocado, coconut) and use some of the local berries I still have in the freezer; in this case, blackberries.
This is one of those instances where you have to realize that “vegan” doesn’t mean “eat unlimited amounts“. Although these are loaded with healthy fats, they are just that: fats. You shouldn’t over do it on these, make sure you treat them like a dessert. I am not one to be afraid of eating fats. There are people who scream HIGH FAT and people who scream NO FAT. One thing I know for certain is that we all need a little.
In the age of technology, it’s easy to be blinded by a pretty face and a fit body. We tend to listen the most to people who look the way we want to look. Why would we pay an ounce of attention to a dietician or a trainer that wasn’t in shape? I do like the concept of Raw Till 4 (eating large portions of fruit all day until 4pm and then a big cooked carb dinner). I followed it for 6 months. I came upon the realization that even though you are eating a high amount of calories (2,500-3,000+ daily) you will not gain weight because of the nutritional value of the calories. It is definitely a weight loss diet and not one that I could follow indefinitely because I would not be able to maintain a healthy weight on. I would have kept losing weight and that was not my goal. Sure, there are people that can eat copious amounts of fruit daily and maintain a steady weight but I don’t live in a area of the world where bananas grow and I did not think that it was a healthy choice for the environment for me to keep up the “banana diet”. Eating monomeals of apples, pears or berries holds no interest with me. It got kind of boring! I also hated that there was little to no emphasis on eating leafy greens, which is something I focus on daily.
Personally, I am much more comfortable eating smaller amounts of food that are more nutrient dense. I do like the idea of a monomeal once in a while; eating a giant bowl of one type of fruit to give my digestive system a break. It makes sense. I just can’t justify it daily.
We tend to give these diets attention when there is someone creating waves about it. Creating a social media frenzy. Attracting famous people to it, or trying to at least.
All calories are not created equal.
It’s a weird concept, I know. You think, calorie in calorie out. It’s about burning more or equal to what you put in your body to maintain your weight, or lose. But by eating such a large amount of low/no fat and low calorie food, you are basically just forcing food in and out of your body. There’s even a term “to smash”, meaning to eat a really huge volume of food at once. Do it to lose weight, sure. But I can’t do it forever. Those of you who can, great! But like a lot of life styles, it’s not for every body.
My other two cents on raw till 4, I do not think it is the right life style to try out for someone overcoming an eating disorder. I battled eating disorders, long ago. I know that they are all about feeling the need to control your food. Regardless of what people say about raw till 4, it is restrictive. Veganism itself is far from restrictive but take a look at this specific diet from afar; you are giving people a time to start and stop eating certain foods every day and even a specific way of eating them. If that’s not restrictive, I don’t know what is. Only raw fruits until 4 pm every day and then a huge bowl of steamed white carbs for dinner….The negative light that is shone on fats creates this mentality that fats make you fat and all fats are bad. Spoiler alert: they don’t. Your life style makes you “fat”. Being sedentary and eating processed foods makes you “fat”. No one single food group can attribute to your body proportions.
In conclusion: eat some fatty muffins once in a while and go for a hike the next day.
- 1 very ripe medium sized avocado
- 1/3 c coconut oil, melted
- 1 T orange zest
- 1 T baking powder
- 3/4 c coconut sugar (or light brown organic sugar)
- 1 c flour, I used cup4cup gluten free flour
- 1/2 c or more if needed fresh or frozen blueberries, raspberries or small-ish blackberries
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Scoop out the avocado flesh into a medium sized mixing bowl and mash it with a fork until softened.
Add in coconut oil, orange zest, baking powder and sugar.
Add in the flour, 1/2 a cup at a time. Mix thoroughly before adding more. You should have what is like a stiff cookie dough now.
Press a spoonful of dough into the bottom of a muffin tin, just enough to make a little crust for the berries to sit in.
I used a mini muffin tin with 12 molds. No need for paper liners; the oil will prevent them from sticking. If you’re using a regular sized muffin tin, I’ll bet this will make 6-7 muffins and you’ll have to increase the baking time by just a few minutes.
Put a few berries in and then press another spoonful of dough on top, to cover the berries. The dough will not rise much so make sure they are sized to your liking.
Bake muffins for 10-12 minutes and then pull them out to check the doneness.
They should brown slightly on top and bounce back when you press gently.
Let them cool for 15-20 minutes before popping them out of the tray.