Chocolate Raspberry Muffins

So I have 5 kids. And no surprise to those who hang out with kids (or humans, for that matter) they come home HUNGRY! They turn into hunter/ gatherers, foragers, and dirty dish-makers – they’ll do almost anything in their search for the elusive snack.

This year, I’ve tried to minimize the locust effect in our pantry (you know, where they eat all the things) by making “a” – emphasis on the singular – snack. This is the snack you may eat. This one. Not the food I made for dinner. Not the ice cream from last weekend. Not the entire stash of today’s groceries.

choco berry muffin 2

The best snack thing ever has happened recently. I’ve been making muffins. Every day, a batch of muffins. I can do this, because these muffins are SO EASY! And so customizable, too. The inspiration for my recipe is from Amanda at Running with Spoons. She’s one of my favorite food bloggers. You should definitely check her out!

I’ve tweaked her recipe a little to make it Weight Watchers friendly for me, but it’s so full of protein and other goodies that it’s yummy and satisfying for kids, too.

chocolate berry muffin

So this is the recipe I made today. I hope you like it! ūüôā

CHOCO-BERRY MUFFINS 3 smart points

Ingredients

– 1 cup plain, non-fat Greek yogurt
– 2 ripe bananas
– 1/2 cup eggbeaters
– 1 cup rolled oats
– 1 cup oat fiber* (note, not oat bran)
– 1/4 cup brown sugar
– 2 Tbsp Cocoa Powder
– 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
– 1/2 tsp baking soda
– 1/2 tsp salt
– 1 tsp vanilla
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– 1.5 cups red raspberries (or diced strawberries)
– 1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Instructions

– Pre-heat the oven to 400
– Place 12 paper liners in a muffin tin and spray with a bit of oil
– Toss everything above the line into a blender and whip it together until it’s just about smooth.
– Pour the contents of the blender into a medium bowl
– Fold in raspberries
– Using a generous scoop from a 1/4 cup measuring cup, spoon the batter into muffin papers.
– Top each with 9 chocolate chips (or approximately 1 level-ish teaspoon)
– Bake for 20 minutes, cool for 20 minutes before serving. (Don’t worry, the chocolate will still be melty.)

*Oat fiber is gluten-free, zero-calorie insoluble fiber. You’ll probably have to order it, but it’s a worthwhile pantry staple for high fiber, lower calorie baking.

Gelatin Pudding Obsession

Yes, it’s true. ¬†I’ve become obsessed with making a slightly odd thing. ¬†Gelatin Pudding. It’s kind of a cross between the stuff of childhood (J-E-L-L-O) and rather the adult-ish “I have access to Amazon prime and can order grass fed beef gelatin and strange tropical powders and such”. ¬†Oh well, I’ve always loved to experiment and try new things. ¬†And apparently, puddings are the latest incarnation of that.

This is my new favorite recipe (loosely based on “The Shrinker” recipe from Trim Healthy Mama). ¬†It is a creamy, spicy, cool pudding, full of metabolism boosting lovelies like oolong, cinnamon, cayenne and coconut. ¬†There are just an infinite variety of yummy, nutritious, healthy puddings that can be made using the same basic method you’ll see outlined below. ¬†Look for a few more varieties to be posted soon.

Oolong Chai Gelatin Pudding

serves four.  (or one.  depending.)

  • 3 bags oolong tea
  • 1 cup of water, just off the boil
  • 1 tbsp gelatin (I’m using Great Lakes from grass fed cows)
  • 1 tbsp coconut butter (optional)
  • 1 tbsp lucuma powder (optional, but try it! ¬†you’ll like it!)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/4 ginger
  • scant 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper (spicy! ¬†look out!)
  • scant 1/2 tsp liquid organic stevia
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • about 6 ice cubes
  1. Get your blender out, and after the tea bags have steeped for 3 minutes in hot water, add the tea to the blender.  
  2. Get ‘er started, and slowly add add the gelatin.
  3. With the blender running, add all the spices, the sweetener and the almond milk.
  4. Finally, one at a time, add the ice cubes.  (I take the knob off of the top of my blender and drop the ice cubes right down through that little hole.  Saves me from getting splashed!)
  5. When the mixture is slightly thickened, pour into containers or one larger container.
  6. Chill for 15 minutes.  
  7. Use the 5 minutes to clean up your kitchen!  Or go outside and look around.  Or dance with your children.  
  8. Then eat that der-licious, cold and spicy pudding! 

Salty Chocolate Nutella Drops

Christmas cookie recipe Hungry Readers,

As promised, here is an unbelievably-deliciously-yumtastically-amazing (and easy) cookie recipe.  The recipe comes from Jenna Huntsberger and Stephanie Willis of Whisked!, and was found in the Washington Post and tweaked (just a little) by me.

chocolate christmas cookiesI’ll present you with my slightly altered version – the original is found in the Washington Post link above.

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 cups of flour
  • 1 cup and 1 TBSP unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp. kosher salt (or 1 tsp. table salt if you don’t have kosher and you must make the cookies now.)
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter at room temperature (I soften for 10 seconds in microwave to get a soft but not melty consistency)
  • 1 and 1/3 c. sugar, plus 1 cup for later
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 2 TBSP cream
  • 2 TBSP chocolate liqueur
  • 1 cup Nutella (sound of angels singing)
Chocolate nutella cookieDIRECTIONS
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper
  3. Whisk flour, cocoa and salt in a small bowl
  4. Beat butter and sugar with a stand mixer until fluffy.
  5. Add egg yolks, chocolate liqueur and cream
  6. Add flour mixture bit by bit until incorporated. ¬†(Don’t mix too much, or your cookies won’t be tender).
  7. Put the remainder of your sugar into a deep pie plate.
  8. Roll large tablespoon size balls in your hands, and fill the pie pan.
  9. Roll the balls in sugar and place on the cookie sheet. (I was able to put 15 on at a time – they don’t spread very much at all).
  10. Make a thumbprint indentation on top of each cookie.
  11. Pop in the oven for 10 minutes.
  12. When the cookies are cooled, pipe or scoop Nutella into the thumbprint.
– Makes 3 dozen cookies
Nutella cookie