Pumpkin Cranberry Gingerbread Muffins

title, pumpkin muffins

I am so excited to finally share these Pumpkin Cranberry Gingerbread Muffins with you! Two years ago when I first tried The Best Pumpkin Muffins from the Post Punk Kitchen they became an instant favourite. I made them constantly all of that fall and winter. Last winter I was so busy trying new recipes, that I only revisited these a couple times, and never took any photos. Now its pumpkin season once again and I have fallen in love with these muffins all over again.

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Through the many times I’ve made them, The Best Pumpkin Muffins has slowly morphed into something healthier and a little different: my Pumpkin Cranberry Gingerbread Muffins. I use whole grain flours, a lot less sugar and oil (and healthier versions of both), more molasses and pumpkin, and the cranberries are never optional. While the PPK’s pumpkin muffins lived up to their name, I have to say that I enjoy them even more with the changes I’ve made. I hope you do too!

Pumpkin Cranberry Gingerbread Muffins (Yields 12 Muffins)
1 cup whole wheat flour
½ cup chickpea flour (besan)
¼ cup brown rice flour
½ cup coconut sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp ground ginger
½ tsp ground nutmeg
¼ tsp ground allspice
¼ tsp ground cloves
¼ tsp sea salt
1 ¼ cups pureed pumpkin
½ cup unsweetened nondairy milk or water
¼ cup molasses
⅓ cup coconut oil, melted
1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
½ cup chopped almonds, walnuts, or pecans (optional)

Notes:
– Please don’t be scared away by the somewhat lengthy ingredient list; one third of it is spices. The recipe is really simple and comes together quickly.
– If you don’t have chickpea or brown rice flour, you can use all whole wheat but your muffins will be a little denser and you may need a little bit of extra milk or water.
– For a special treat, I highly recommend trying these with a ½ cup of vegan dark chocolate chips instead of the nuts. You won’t be disappointed!
– For some an extra pop of ginger, toss in a couple tablespoons of chopped crystallized ginger.

Preheat oven to 400°F.
In a large bowl mix together the flours, sugar, baking powder, salt, and spices.
In a smaller bowl whisk together the pumpkin, milk, oil, and molasses.
Stir the cranberries and nuts (if using) into the dry ingredients.
Add the wet ingredients into the dry and stir until just combined.
Use a ¼ cup measuring scoop to scoop batter into a lined or lightly greased muffin tin.
Bake for 20-23 minutes.
Enjoy!

labels, pumpkin muffins

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In case you’re wondering, these muffins freeze amazingly well, though I usually have a hard  time having extras to put in the freezer.

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These little guys are so moist and flavourful they really don’t need anything else! (Though a little smear of Earth Balance probably wouldn’t hurt.) Yum!

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I’ve shared this post with Healthy Vegan Friday #70 and Wellness Weekends.

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title, pumpkin cornbread waffles
Pumpkin Cornbread Waffles

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Veggie Burgers Every Which Way: Baked Falafel Burgers

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Vegan MoFo 2013 – Post #9

In my quest to stop buying processed veggie burgers (and other faux meats), I’ve been trying a lot of different veggie burger recipes from the web and different cookbooks. I love having a batch, or two, of veggie burgers in the freezer for those times when I am in need of a quick meal. Put them in a bun or wrap along with some fresh vegetables, or crumble on a salad and you’ve got a near-instant meal! If you follow my What I Ate Wednesday posts you’ve probably seen a lot of different veggie burgers popping up in these ways, including these Baked Falafel Burgers from Lukas Volger’s Veggie Burgers Every Which Way.

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I’ve always loved falafel, but this was actually the first time I’ve made them from scratch. And they were really easy! This is probably the simplest veggie burger recipe I’ve tried so far (everything goes right into the food processor) and one of the best. The hardest part of the recipe is remembering to get the chickpeas soaking the night or morning before.

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I did make a few minor changes to the recipe, just based on what I had on hand. Even with these changes, the recipe still worked perfectly.
– I doubled the recipe, but didn’t double the amount of onion or lemon zest.
– I neglected to measure the chickpeas before I set them soaking, so I just used about 2 cups of soaked chickpeas.
– I forgot to add parsley to my grocery list, so I added spinach for some green. Parsley is a pretty essential ingredient in most falafel and I would definitely add it next time, but the burgers still tasted great without it.
– I didn’t need to add the optional water or chickpea flour.

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I noticed in this recipe that the yield says 4 patties, but in the recipe it says to shape it into 6 patties. I doubled the recipe and ended up with 9 patties.

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Fresh from the oven, with some roasted red pepper hummus and cucumber.

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Pineapple Mango Creamsicles and Mixed Berry Ice Pops

It is definitely summer around here and while I’m loving the sunshine, I’m not a huge fan of the heat. What better way to beat the heat than with an icy totally guilt-free treat?! (Really didn’t intend for all the rhyming there!)

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Store-bought popsicles may be fruit-flavoured, but they are usually just frozen sugar-water, without any actual fruit in sight. These home-made popsicles taste even better than store-bought, are almost completely all fruit, and therefore completely guilt-free! They are also super quick and easy to make. If you know how to turn on a blender, than you can make these in about five minutes. The hardest part is waiting for them to freeze!

Pineapple Mango Creamsicles
1 cup pineapple chunks
1 cup mango chunks
1 cup canned coconut milk
1 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk (or more coconut milk, for an even creamier creamsicle)
1/2 tsp orange extract
Optional – sweetener to taste

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Mixed Berry Ice Pops
1 cup blueberries
1 cup other berries (raspberries, blackberries, cranberries, strawberries…) – You can choose one kind, or a mixture.
2 cups water or non-dairy milk
Optional – sweetener to taste

For both kinds, just throw everything in a blender and blend until smooth. Divide into whatever ice pop molds you have and place them in a freezer to freeze. Wait impatiently. Enjoy!

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Notes:
– For both recipes, you can use either fresh or frozen fruit, or a combination of both. 

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I’ve shared this post with Raw Food Thursday (7/18/13), Allergy-Free Wednesday, Gluten Free Wednesdays (7/17/13), Healthy Vegan Friday #52, Gluten Free Friday #49, and Wellness Weekend (July 18-22).

Questions
Ice cream or popsicles?

What is your favourite popsicle flavour? Or the craziest flavour you’ve tried?
Feel free to share or link to the recipe!

Baked Mediterranean Chickpea Burgers

Let me just start off by saying that these Baked Mediterranean Chickpea Burgers are my new favourite veggie burgers! I’ve been trying a lot of different recipes lately for vegan burgers, as I really like having some in the freezer for quick meals, and I’m trying not to buy any processed ones full of junk (even though they taste really good). These are absolutely the best ones so far. My sister Jem and her fiancé (both omnivores) have also just finished a batch! We all love that these burgers aren’t trying to taste like meat, they just have a really awesome flavour of their own.

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On a whole wheat bun with roasted garlic hummus, romaine lettuce, and Sriracha.

They are also very simple to make. You basically just mix everything in a bowl, make patties, and bake them. No pre-cooking of individual ingredients or food processor required.

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On a whole wheat wrap with melted Daiya Jalapeno Garlic Wedge, red pepper hummus, green leaf lettuce, and cucumber.

I should also mention that this recipe is based on The Post Punk Kitchen’s recipe for Double Batch Chickpea Cutlets, which are really great as is. A version of the Chickpea Cutlets also appears in Veganomicon.

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Cut up in a salad, with romaine lettuce, cucumber, red pepper, black pepper, and balsamic vinaigrette.

And now, if those photos made you hungry for some Baked Mediterranean Chickpea Burgers (they sure did for me), here’s the recipe. Go make some burgers!

Baked Mediterranean Chickpea Burgers (Yields 8 Large Patties)
¼ cup sun-dried tomatoes, roughly chopped
¼ cup hot water
1 16oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 cup breadcrumbs
¼ cup ground flax seeds
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp italian seasoning
1 tsp paprika
¼ cup black olives, roughly chopped
1 cup vital wheat gluten
1 cup water or vegetable broth
¼ cup soy sauce

Notes:
– I buy sun-dried tomatoes in a dry package. Obviously if you have oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes you won’t need to rehydrate them
– Instead of mashing the chickpeas and olive oil in a bowl, you can choose to pulse them in a food processor. I prefer not to dirty the food processor just for this. Just don’t process them for too long, otherwise you’ll end up with hummus.

– For some extra flavour, you can include the water you soaked the tomatoes in, in the 1 cup of water or vegetable broth.
– If you’re not sure what the ‘strings of gluten’ should look like, this photo should help. 

Place the chopped up sun-dried tomatoes in a small bowl with the hot water and set aside for at least 10 minutes before using them.
Place the chickpeas and olive oil in a large bowl and mash with a fork or masher just until there are no whole chickpeas left.
Add all of the other ingredients into the bowl with the mashed chickpeas, including the now rehydrated sun-dried tomatoes. Knead everything together for about 3 minutes, or until strings of gluten appear.
Separate the dough into 4 equal(ish) pieces, then divide each piece into 2. You should now have 8 pieces. Shape each piece into a patty. This can easily be done by rolling it into a ball, then flattening and shaping it into a disc between your hands. They should be roughly half an inch thick.
Place the patties on a lightly greased baking sheet and bake at 375°F for 20 minutes. Remove from oven, flip, and bake for another 8-10 minutes.
Enjoy!

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Enjoy these Mediterranean Chickpea Burgers right away, or let cool and freeze them for later. I usually make veggie burgers specifically for the freezer, because they are awesome for making quick filling meals. The patties can be reheated any way you choose: in a microwave, in a pan, or on the barbecue.

I’ve shared this post with Allergy-Free Wednesdays Week 67, Healthy Vegan Friday #43, and Wellness Weekends.

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Nacho Cheez White Bean Spread, Basic No-Mayo Coleslaw, Butternut Squash Black Bean Burritos

Frozen Greens Cubes

Love green smoothies or interested in trying them? You need to try these Frozen Greens Cubes!

I recently came across these Frozen Kale Cubes and knew that I had to make something similar. I love putting greens in my smoothies! It’s an easy way to get your greens, and especially when using flavoured protein powders (I like Vega One and Vega Energizing Smoothie) you really can’t taste it at all. However, I find that without the use of a high-powered blender, a lot of the time the greens just don’t get pureed enough. These Frozen Greens Cubes solve that problem beautifully. The spinach and kale are already pureed, so I end up with a much smoother smoothie. I’ve been enjoying my green smoothies a lot more since I made these cubes, and I will be continuing to make them.

Once you make a batch your smoothies will also be faster and easier to make. No more washing green stuff before every smoothie! And you’ll have greens for your smoothies, even when your fridge is looking scarily devoid of green!

Frozen Greens Cubes (Yields 3 1/2 cups Puree)
1 large bunch kale, washed and thick stems removed
1 142g/5oz pack organic baby spinach
1-1 1/2 cups water

Just fill your blender about three-quarters full with the spinach and/or kale and add 1 cup of water. Puree until there is room to add more greens to the blender. If you don’t have a really high-powered blender you will need to stop a few times to push the contents of the blender back down towards the blade. Keep doing this until all the greens are blended smooth. The greens will release liquid and become easier to blend the more they are blended. Add the remaining 1/2 cup water if needed (this will probably depend on your blender).

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Now marvel at the gorgeous green. Pour the greens puree into ice-cube trays and place in the freezer. As you can see, my little ice-cube trays were full so I also filled some silicone muffin liners. Once frozen, you can pop out the cubes and store in a sealed bag in the freezer.

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Add these cubes to all your smoothies! I’ve also added them to a soup and a pasta sauce, both with great results. And, obviously these are pretty customizable so feel free to try your favourite combination of greens. I haven’t tried it yet but I think it could be interesting to use coconut water instead of water.

Enjoy!
As always, I’d love to hear about it if you give these a try!

I’ve shared this post with Wellness Weekends (May2-6), Gluten Free Fridays #38, and Healthy Vegan Fridays #41.

Need any smoothie ideas to add your Frozen Greens Cubes to? Check these out.
Smoothies!
Smoothies of 2013: Part One
Or check out the Smoothies/Drinks category on My Recipe Page.

Tropical Pineapple Coconut Oat Cups

Title, Tropical Oat Cups

 

Last week, I posted my recipe for Pumpkin Spice Oat Cups with Pecans and Crystallized Ginger. These Tropical Pineapple Coconut Oat Cups are the result of trying to figure out what other fruit I wanted to use, instead of pumpkin puree, and then what flavours would go well. (I think applesauce will be next.) Jem mentioned this Pineapple Coconut Bread (which we absolutely love and need to make again soon) and I immediately thought of transferring those lovely tropical flavours to our next batch of baked oat cups.

These oat cups are quick and simple to make, and then you’ll have something delicious, healthy, and super portable on hand for quick breakfasts and snacks.

The pineapple and coconut flavours in these oat cups are not super strong, but the combination is still pretty darn awesome. If you’d like a strong pineapple flavour, then you may want to include some diced pineapple. The shredded coconut also gives these a chewier texture than their pumpkin counterpart.

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Tropical Pineapple Coconut Oat Cups (Yields 24 cups)
5 cups rolled oats (not quick oats)
1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground coriander
2 1/2 cups pineapple puree*
5 tbsp agave nectar**
2 cups water
1/4 cup coconut oil
*For the pineapple puree, I pureed in a blender, one 398ml can of pineapple rings, along with the juice from the can. You could also puree fresh pineapple, with some water or pineapple juice if needed. 
**Maple syrup would also work, but I haven’t tried it in this recipe. I think next time I’m going to use coconut sugar (maybe 5 tbsp, plus an extra 1/4 cup of liquid).

Preheat oven to 375°F and line muffin tins. (You will need 24 cups.)
In a large bowl combine the oats and coconut.
In a separate bowl combine the pineapple puree, spices, agave, water, and coconut oil.
Add the wet ingredients to the oat mixture and stir until well combined. If the mixture looks watery, just let it sit for a few minutes and the oats will soak up some of the liquid.
Divide between lined muffin tins and bake for 20 minutes.

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Store oat cups in a sealed container in the fridge. I like these best when warmed up a little, but they are also great cold or at room temperature. These also freeze very well!

Enjoy!

Both of my oat cups recipes are based on Chocolate-Covered Katie’s recipe for Breakfast Oatmeal Cupcakes To Go.

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This recipe has been linked up with Healthy Vegan Friday #33. You can view everyone else’s submissions here, here, or here.

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Pumpkin Spice Oat Cups with Pecans and Crystallized Ginger

Not tired of pumpkin yet? (Never.)

Got any cans of pumpkin lurking in your cupboards from the holiday season? (Sure do.)

Then you should make these Pumpkin Spice Oat Cups with Pecans and Crystallized Ginger. They are quick and simple to make, and then you’ll have something delicious, healthy, and super portable on hand for quick breakfasts and snacks. You’re welcome!

Pumpkin Spice Oat Cups

These are a spin on Katie’s Breakfast Oatmeal Cupcakes To Go. I instantly loved the idea of portable baked oatmeal cups, but I can’t stand bananas, so I’ve used pumpkin puree instead, which in turn inspired some other changes. If you do like bananas, you should definitely check out Katie’s recipe at the above link. And if you like pumpkin, my recipe is below

Pumpkin Spice Oat Cups with Pecans and Crystallized Ginger (Yields 24 Cups)
5 cups rolled oats*
1 cup chopped pecans
3 tbsp finely chopped crystallized ginger
2 1/2 cups pumpkin puree
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
5 tbsp maple syrup (or agave)*
1/4 cup coconut oil
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
*For a sugar-free version Katie suggested 5 NuNaturals Stevia packets and an extra 1/3 cup water. I haven’t personally tried this option.

Preheat oven to 375°F and line muffin tins. (You will need 24 cups.)
In a large bowl combine the oats and pecans.
In a separate bowl combine the pumpkin puree, pumpkin pie spice, maple syrup, coconut oil, and vanilla extract.
Add the wet ingredients to the oat mixture, along with the crystallized ginger and stir until all the oats are coated.
Divide between lined muffin tins and bake for 20-23 minutes.

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These oat cups can be eaten right away, or will store well in the fridge or freezer, ready to be eaten anytime. I’ve enjoyed these cold and at room temperature, but they are best when warmed up. Enjoy!

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These oat cups have a fantastic chewy texture, a slightly sweet pumpkin flavour, with little bits of crunch from the pecans and sweet spiciness from the ginger. I hope you enjoy them as much as I did!

Stay tuned. I’ve also created a tropical twist on these Oat Cups, which I will be sharing with you soon!

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This post has been submitted to Healthy Vegan Friday #32.

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Title, Blueberry Oat Scones Blueberry Oatmeal Scones