Saturday, July 13, 2013

Healthy Pumpkin Spice Muffins You'll Love

It's a rainy, warm, and muggy day in July (translation - movie day!), but inside my house it may as well be November! I've got my cozy pants on, fall scented candles burning, and pumpkin spice muffins in the oven. I just ran out of the zucchini muffins my little one brings to school, so it was time to make another batch!

I like muffins because they are portable, don't necessarily have to be refrigerated during the day, and they are easy for kids to eat. But, muffins can also be a calorie and sugar bomb if you're not careful. I've adapted this recipe over time and now feel confident giving them to my kids as a sweet treat that won't send them into that crazed and dazed look that they get when they have too much sugar. 

Here's the recipe and the nutritional low-down so you can make some of your own!

Pumpkin Spice Muffins
Who says you have to wait for fall?

1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup bread flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs
1 tsp pumpkin spice
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup orange juice
1 cup pumpkin
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup raisins

It's Easy:
1. Mix your dry ingredients and wet ingredients in separate bowls, and then combine them, stirring just enough to combine them. Do not over-stir or your muffins will be too tough.

2. Spoon into greased muffin tins about halfway full. I opt for smaller muffins. We can always have another one, but its hard to undo eating a big one!

3. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Enjoy!

This recipe should make 14 muffins, and each has 112 calories, 4 grams of fat, 3 grams of protein, and 5 grams of sugar, most of those coming from the raisins. Please note that the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends 12 grams of sugar each day for children. One of these muffins represents almost half of a child's sugar needs for the day. Take a look at a typical muffin recipe, note the amount of sugar called for, and consider where that muffins may fall in your child's sugar needs for the day!

To reduce the sugar in these muffins, do not use as many raisins.

Read more about sugar allowance in Sugar Shake Up: How Much Do You Need?

These muffins are sweet and simple, and I love that my kids love them. They made my house super cozy today and when paired with low-sugar yogurt or low-fat cheese, will make a great snack later in the week.

And, they make my house smell great!

Get out there and get healthy today, even if you bake muffins!