Banana Muffins | Oil Free, Refined Sugar Free

As most of you know, I am a pastry chef by trade, so sweets really speak to my heart. I've been trying to make some lifestyle changes as of late to help with my overall health, and one of those changes has (unfortunately) needed to be cutting way back on my refined sugar and excess oil intake.

At first this was very difficult and I felt restricted and frustrated because baking at home is one of the ways I relax and practice self care. However, I think I am starting to get the hang of this new way of baking, and I hope you all enjoy this recipe I created today! These muffins clock in at only 81* calories each, which is super exciting because that means you can easily enjoy two or three if you wish to do so! I'd love to hear your feedback and see pictures if you choose to try baking these at home!

Notes:

*Using the exact ingredients I will list below these muffins are only 81 calories each (without nuts or chocolate chips). If you use different ingredients the calories will change. I used King Arthur Special Patent Flour in this recipe which has a higher protein content therefore is a bit higher in calories. You can use regular AP flour or all whole wheat for a lower calorie count if you wish!

I highly recommend using a kitchen scale in order to get measurements exact, but you don't have one you can use measuring cups and spoons.

**I use Erythritol in this recipe because it is natural, zero calories, doesn't have an aftertaste and acts very similarly to granulated cane sugar. It's not exactly like sugar, but it's darn close! You can find it in the baking isle of most major stores or on Amazon. I've also tried Stevia and Monk Fruit and very much disliked both.

***I chose Almond milk because it's only 30 calories per 1 cup, which is pretty killer! You can sub a different plant milk, but the caloric content will change.

****For measuring I used the black scoop from Target which is just under 1 oz per scoop. I did 2 scoops per muffin.

Makes 14 small muffins

Dry Ingredients:

120 g (scant cup) All Purpose Flour (I used King Arthur Special Patent)

120 g (scant cup) Whole Wheat Flour

1 tsp Baking Soda

1 tsp Baking Powder

1 tsp Ground Cinnamon

1 small pinch sea salt (about 1/4 tsp)

Wet Ingredients:

1 Cup Granulated Sugar-Free Sweetener of choice (I used Erythritol**)

1 TBSP Molasses (Optional, but it adds that brown sugar flavor)

1/3 Cup Unsweetened Apple Sauce

178 g Mashed Banana (about 2 bananas)

1/4 Cup Unsweetened Almond Milk***

1 tsp White Vinegar (Don't skip this! Baking soda + Vinegar = Fluffy Muffins)

Instructions:

1. Preheat oven to 350F and spray a nonstick cupcake tin with cooking spray, or line with muffin liners.

2. Whisk together dry ingredients (excluding sugar) in a medium bowl, set aside.

3. Mash banana in a large bowl, add remaining wet ingredients (including sugar) and whisk together until combined.

4. Stir dry ingredients into wet ingredients and mix until just combined. Do not over mix.

5. Fold in desired additional ingredients if you are wanting something a little special in the muffins. I did half with vegan chocolate chips and half with chopped walnuts. Note that this will also change caloric contents, so don't forget to calculate that number if you are needing to track your daily intake.

6. Using a scoop measure out 14 equal muffins (a little under 2 fluid oz per)**** and bake for 10 minutes and then rotate the pan, bake for an additional 6 to 10 minutes. Every oven is different, so keep a close eye on your muffins while they're baking. Check center with a toothpick, and remove from oven and transfer to a cooling rack. Eat warm or at room temp. These will stay good in a sealed container on the counter for about 5 days, they also freeze very well.

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