Quinoa Muffins

Yes, another muffin recipe.  I fully admit that I have a crazy obsession with muffins, but I just love that it is so easy to make a snack suitable for kids and grown-ups with wholesome ingredients that keeps beautifully in the freezer.  Really, what could be better?

I’ve been wanting to try these for a while…quinoa keeps showing up on lists of super-foods due to the high quality protein, fiber, and vitamins it contains.  It’s one of those foods I always say I’m going to eat more often, but when it comes down to it, it’s just not my favorite grain (with this notable exception).  But I was intrigued by the idea of putting it in a muffin, and besides, I’m trying to squeeze in as much cooking as possible before the little peanut growing in my belly makes her entrance into the world (due date is only 4 weeks away!).  I am hoping to have a few more recipes to share in the coming weeks before I fall off the grid for a little while…

I am glad I decided to give these a try, because they are really tasty!  They bake up to be nice and rounded, are incredibly moist, and just sweet enough.  You can definitely taste the quinoa, but despite my general aversion, I think it adds a nice flavor to the muffin.  Hubby said he couldn’t detect it, but was a huge fan of these muffins, too (the munchkin, not so much – oh, well – can’t win them all!).  For those of you who like mix-ins, these would probably taste great with dried fruit or nuts as well – let me know if you find a winning combination 🙂

 

If you look carefully, you can actually see the little grains of quinoa!

 

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Quinoa Muffins
adapted from Enlightened Cooking

1 cup quinoa, rinsed in a mesh sieve
2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup dried fruit or nuts (optional; I omitted)
3/4 cup milk (I used 1%, whole would be fine too)
2/3 cup agave (or honey or maple syrup)
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 large egg
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350.  Spray muffin tins with oil.

Bring quinoa and 2 cups water to a boil in a medium saucepan set over medium-high heat. Reduce to a simmer; cover, and cook 15-20 minutes until water has been absorbed and quinoa is tender.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and optional add-ins.

In another bowl, whisk together the milk, agave, oil, egg, vanilla, and cooked quinoa (it’s probably a good idea to let the quinoa cool a few minutes, but mine was definitely still warm when I mixed it in).  Add milk mixture to flour mixture, and stir just until combined. Divide the batter among the prepared muffin cups.

Bake approximately 15 minutes for minis and 20 minutes for standard muffins or until muffins feel cooked through and are lightly brown on the outsides. Cool muffins in pan for 5 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Makes 32 mini muffins, 16 standard muffins, or a combination of the 2 🙂

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