This Instructable could also be called "How to Get Your Kids to Beg for Vegetables." These muffins are easy to make, kid friendly, and delicious!! I lay in bed at night and think about different ways to get my child to eat and enjoy vegetables (sad, but true!). I am thrilled for people whose children willingly consume tons of fresh whole vegetables, but for the rest of us, sometimes you have to get a little creative.
Each muffin ends up containing: 1/2 egg, 7 spinach leaves, 4 teaspoons sweet potato, 4 teaspoons dark chocolate, and 3 teaspoons of oats (plus some other good fats/etc). Its a complete meal all in tasty muffin form! Have I mentioned that my child has never once turned down a muffin?
Ingredients (makes 12 muffins):
1 cup mashed sweet potato (cooked, leftovers work well)
84 baby spinach leaves, stems removed (equal to 2 big handfuls....I counted for accuracy!)
1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
1/4 cup coconut oil
1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3/4 cup certified gluten free oat flour (I make my own in the food processor using rolled oats)
1/3 cup sugar
1 Tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 12 cup muffin tin with paper baking cups. Set aside.
2. In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, melt your butter and coconut oil. Stir in the chocolate chips, cocoa powder, and salt and remove from heat. Stir until everything is completely mixed and smooth. A whisk works well, but a spoon does the job just as easily. Set this mixture aside to cool slightly while you prepare the rest of the batter.
3. Next get out your food processor (mine is large...14 cup capacity) and add your eggs, sweet potato and spinach leaves. Process on high until very smooth. Add in the sugar, baking soda, vanilla extract and oat flour. Pulse a few times to mix it in. Then add in your slightly cooled chocolate mixture and process on high until everything is mixed well. Stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl once or twice to make sure everything is incorporated. Your batter should now resemble chocolate cake batter.
4. Pour the batter into your muffin tin lined with paper baking cups (12). The batter will fill up each cup almost completely (see photos).
5. Bake for 25 minutes. Remove from oven. Remove muffins from pan to cool completely on a wire cooling rack. DO NOT EAT YET!!! This is very important. If you try to eat them when they are hot, you will think they taste weird. You MUST let them cool completely before eating/serving. The taste of the spinach disappears as they cool.
Makes 12 large muffins. Store these in the fridge or freezer.
Notes: These are perfectly portable and would do well in a lunch box or thrown in your bag to eat in the car. I serve these for breakfast with eggs and fruit. Some questions that you may have:
"Do these taste like eggs/spinach/sweet potato?" No, they taste like chocolate.
"Can I substitute coconut oil for the butter" or "butter for the coconut oil"? Yes of course...the taste will be just slightly different. I like the combination of butter and coconut oil because butter tastes great, and coconut oil has healthy fats that I like my child to eat.
"Can I substitute another flour for the oat flour?" Yes of course....feel free to play around, but I can only claim that these taste great if you use oats (and follow my recipe exactly). I have never tried another flour in these.
"Can I use these as cupcakes?" Sure you can! Add some frosting on top and the kids will never know they are eating spinach and sweet potato.
"Can I make this into donuts?" Yes! Use a well greased donut pan and bake for about 15 minutes.
"I am not Gluten Free...can I make these with gluten?" Of course! Just use regular rolled oats to make your flour (or buy it)...any kind you have in your pantry.