Marjory Abrams is executive vice president and chief content officer of Bottom Line Inc. Margie is a self-made health nut, voraciously learning from the content Bottom Line publishes—and the innumerable health experts she has rubbed elbows with over the course of her career. Her nightly game of “What’s in the ‘fridge?” has led to innovative, mostly yummy, concoctions that rarely leave leftovers.
Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day. But finding a healthy grab-and-go breakfast when you’re gluten-free, egg-free, dairy-free and cane-sugar-free is a challenge. There’s simply nothing for me to buy in the store. I make everything myself.
While waffles are my favorite breakfast food (here’s my waffle recipe; add vanilla and skip the savory spices), my typical weekday breakfast is fruit with almonds or walnuts, two handfuls of uncooked oats with unsweetened almond milk, a sprinkle of cinnamon and a splash of vanilla. That’s fine for sitting at the kitchen table or at my desk but it doesn’t work for my teenage daughter, who needs something easy to munch on the school bus.
I’ve got a limited rotation for grab-and-go options that fit the bill. Oatmeal with nuts and a fruit smoothie on the side…this recipe for Oat Crepes from Unconventional Baker—I fill with melted stevia-sweetened chocolate chips, almond or peanut butter and strawberries or raspberries inside, cut into bites and in a to-go cup with a fork (I cook up a big batch on Sundays and reheat during the week). I also found a great recipe from Elana’s Pantry for Paleo Chocolate Zucchini Bread that I bake into muffins.
In search of something new that covered all of the nutritional bases and would satisfy until lunchtime, let me introduce you to my Apple-Carrot Muffins, with a shout-out to Elana’s Pantry for the recipe structure (that chocolate zucchini bread recipe above) that I worked from to create it…
1 cup almond flour ½ cup oat flour ½ teaspoon baking soda ¼ teaspoon sea salt ½ teaspoon cinnamon 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves 2 flax “eggs” (2 Tablespoons ground flaxseed combined with 6 Tablespoons water)—or 2 eggs 2 Tablespoons coconut oil ¼ cup unfiltered honey 1 apple, peeled and grated 1 carrot, grated (no need to peel if it’s organic and fresh; just wash well) ½ cup raisins
Preheat oven to 350 degrees, or 325 degrees “convection bake.”
Using an electric mixer, combine flours, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves on a low speed to blend.
Add flax eggs (or real eggs), coconut oil and honey, and mix to a nice batter.
Add grated apple and carrot and mix on low speed to combine without crushing the apple and carrot.
Mix in raisins by hand.
This recipe makes about 15 muffins. Spritz the appropriate number of spots in two muffins pans with olive oil spray or line with muffin liners. (I prefer no liners because I like the crispness when it’s baked right in the pan.
Scoop batter into the pan—fill about halfway.
Bake about 30 minutes if you’re egg-free; 25 minutes if you’re using real eggs. The tops will brown nicely, and the edges will pull away from the pan. Test with a toothpick to confirm (it should come out clean).
WHAT A DIFFERENCE AN EGG MAKES!
I actually baked this recipe two different ways—with real egg (which I do as a treat once in a while) and with egg replacer. They both taste great, but as you can see from the photos below, the one with flaxseed is denser while real egg makes for a fluffier muffin.