Pumpkin Cranberry Gingerbread Muffins

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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!

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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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Pumpkin Cornbread Waffles

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More Waffles from Healthy Happy Life

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Vegan MoFo 2013 – Post #1

It’s Vegan Month of Food time again! This is my second year participating and I’ve decided to focus this year on posting reviews and photos of other peoples’ recipes that I’ve tried (from both cookbooks and online). Here it goes. 1 down, only 19 more to go!

Previously I wrote a post about some delicious Pumpkin Spice Waffles from Kathy over at Healthy Happy Life. I haven’t made those ones again since, but I have tried two of her other waffle recipes: Apple Cinnamon Ginger Waffles and Blueberry Citrus Whole Wheat Waffles (which I actually turned into chocolate chip waffles). Yum!

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I’m a sucker for anything that involves cooked apples and these Apple Cinnamon Ginger Waffles are no exception. They certainly did not disappoint! The combination of apples and cinnamon is always great, but the addition of ginger and candied ginger in these waffles make them something really special!

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What I Did:
I doubled the recipe.
I substituted half of the spelt flour for oat flour. Just because.
I only like and buy green Granny Smith apples, so thats what I used. I used half of a large one, diced small.
I did include the optional chia seeds, but left out the optional almond butter and orange zest.
I substituted the mashed banana with apple sauce: 1/2 cup for the doubled recipe.

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Another morning I used the Blueberry Citrus Whole Wheat Waffles to make a special breakfast for my nephew and I: chocolate chip waffles. I followed the recipe, except that I left out the citrus zest, diced oranges, and blueberries. I also left out all of the optional ingredients. We ate our chocolate chip whole wheat waffles with a quick berry sauce similar to my Instant Cranberry Sauce and Blueberry Sauce.

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Instant Mixed Berry Sauce
2/3 cup frozen blueberries
2/3 cup frozen blackberries
2 tbsp maple syrup
2 tsp ground chia seed

Place berries in a microwave-safe bowl or measuring cup and defrost in microwave until berries break apart when you stir them. Stir and break up the berries with a fork, until mostly broken up. Stir in maple syrup and ground chia seeds.
Enjoy on your favourite waffles, pancakes, french toast, or oatmeal.

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I really liked these whole wheat waffles and can definitely see using them as a base for all kinds of add-in combinations!

You should definitely head on over to Healthy Happy Life and make some waffles!

Crispy Kale and Mushroom Fried Rice for One

Today for lunch I made a single serving version of this Crispy Kale and Mushroom Fried Rice from Appetite for China and it was fantastic! I didn’t follow the recipe exactly, but mine isn’t too much different.

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Crispy Kale and Mushroom Fried Rice (Yields 1 Meal-Size Serving)
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 tsp fresh minced ginger
1 1/2 cups finely chopped white or cremini mushrooms
1 cup finely chopped kale leaves
1 cup cooked long grain brown rice
1 tsp soy sauce
1/2 tbsp hoisin sauce
Optional toppings: roughly chopped peanuts, roasted sesame seeds, Sriracha or red pepper flakes

Notes: I used the leaves off of 2 large pieces of kale. Just rip the leaves of of the thick stem, discard the stem, and wash the leaves. This dish will work best if the leaves aren’t still really wet when you add them to the pan.
Soy free? Just use a soy-free soy sauce alternative like coconut aminos and use a soy-free hoisin or teriyaki sauce (or just leave it out).
Gluten free? Just use Bragg’s Liquid Aminos or gluten-free tamari in place of the soy sauce, and make sure your hoisin sauce is gluten free (or just leave it out). Also ensure your rice is gluten free.
Sesame free? I’d use peanut or coconut oil instead.IMG_2156

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Heat the oil in a large pan over medium-high heat.
Add the ginger, mushrooms, and kale and cook for 3-5 minutes, stirring once, until the mushrooms are tender and the kale is getting crispy.
Add the rice to the pan, breaking up any large clumps. Mix well with the vegetables then let cook about 2 minutes, until heated and starting to brown.
Stir in the hoisin and soy sauces, let cook 1 more minute, then turn off heat and transfer contents your bowl.
Top with roughly chopped peanuts, roasted sesame seeds, and Sriracha or red pepper flakes if desired. I used all three!
Enjoy!

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I’ve shared this recipe with Healthy Vegan Friday #46 and Wellness Weekends (June6-10).

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Butternut Squash Miso Noodle Soup with Kale and Edamame

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A Vegan Sushi Feast

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Spicy Peanut Portobello Kale Rice Bowl

Healthy Happy Life’s Spicy Peanut Portobello Kale Rice Bowl

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Yes, that title is a mouthful, but each bite of this delicious rice bowl will be a mouthful of awesome!

When I came across the recipe for this Spicy Peanut Portobello Kale Rice Bowl I knew it was meant to be! I just happened to have a whole bunch of kale and a few portobello mushrooms in the fridge that I’d bought specifically for a different dinner I had planned, but I immediately decided I was making this instead.

This rice bowl consists of brown rice, a layer of spicy peanut ginger kale salad (warm or cold), sautéed portobellos, and crunchy peanuts. It all works together wonderfully. I love it when a super healthy meal feels like comfort food!

Kathy suggests adding some tofu for a protein boost, but I didn’t have any on hand, so I cooked some green lentils in with my rice. This is 1 cup of short grain brown rice and 1/2 cup green lentils, cooked with 3 cups of water, just like you cook rice.

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For the Spicy Peanut Ginger Kale Salad portion of the recipe I used just 1 bunch of kale, but the full amount of sauce and peanuts. I really loved how saucy it was and I think I’d do it the same way again. I also left out the red onions, because I don’t like onions, and the pickled ginger, because I didn’t have any. I then doubled the amount of fresh ginger in the sauce to make up for the missing pickled ginger.

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I cooked the mushrooms as the recipe says, just left out the onion again.

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Yum!

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This recipe does have a few different components, but please don’t let that stop you from trying this. Each part is pretty simple, and it can all be made ahead of time if that makes it easier. I ate mine as leftovers for the next two days and it was just as great, and possibly even better, than the first night. And if you don’t feel tempted by the rice bowl in its entirety you could still try the Spicy Peanut Ginger Kale Salad on its own. I loved the peanut sauce covered kale and can definitely see making this part again on its own.

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My photos don’t really do this delicious bowl of goodness justice. You should really follow the recipe links above and drool over Kathy’s gorgeous photos like I did. 🙂

Enjoy!

I’ve shared this post with Healthy Vegan Friday #39.

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Butternut Squash Miso Noodle Soup with Kale and Edamame (another mouthful!)

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Kale-Millet Croquettes with Cheezy Tahini Sauce

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Spicy Peanut Vegetable Soup

Orange Avocado Scones: MMAZ #28

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MMAZ stands for Meatless Mondays from A-Z. This is a weekly link up hosted by Better With Veggies where everyone links up a recipe featuring the ingredient of the week (it begins with an ingredient starting with the letter A and works through the alphabet).  The first round of MMAZ finished a while ago, and I didn’t end up contributing as much as I’d planned on.

Now, Round 2 has started and I am super excited about the new changes. This time around, each ingredient will be around for 2 weeks. The first week is CREATE week, where we are encouraged to create and share a recipe using the featured ingredient, and the second is COOK week, where you can cook someone else’s recipe using the featured ingredient (maybe one from the Create week) and share your experience. I really think the new Cook week will help a lot more people, including myself to participate more often.

The first ingredient for MMAZ is Avocado. Sadly, I missed the Create link up and just missed the Cook link up, but I did try one of the recipes submitted and wanted to share it with you anyway. Hopefully I can get myself in gear for next week!

These Blood Orange Avocado Scones from Sprint 2 the Table looked delicious and the thought of baking with avocado (probably the only way I’ve never used it) was very intriguing so I decided to give them a try.

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The only minor changes I made to the recipe, just based on what I had on hand, were to sub brown rice flour for half of the almond meal, and to use a regular orange in place of a blood orange.

This is the first time I’ve made gluten-free scones and I really enjoyed the texture and taste that the chickpea, almond, and brown rice flours give. The avocado really does make them “buttery” without affecting the taste at all and there is just enough orange flavour. I also really love the beautiful yellow colour of these scones. I’m pretty sure I will be making these again!

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I’ve shared this post with Gluten Free Fridays #35.

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