Can chocolate chip muffins actually be healthy?
I say YES!
It all comes down to the ingredients you use. Most muffins you buy in cafes are laden with sugar, refined flour and more sugar. On the other hand, these muffins are filled with ingredients that are easy to source and also good for you.
Spelt flour - I use a combination of wholemeal spelt flour and white spelt flour in these muffins. The wholemeal flour contains some of the bran that and is higher in fibre - great for the large intestine. By combining with white spelt flour, you get a muffin that is not too dense.
Organic cacao powder - ditch the cocoa powder and find some organic cacao powder (note the spelling difference). Cacao is minimally processed in comparison to cocoa which is treated at higher temperatures. For more info about the differences, check out this article.
Rice malt syrup - this is a wonderful sweetener to use in all types of cooking. I love it in baking and usually combine it with maple syrup for a good dose of sweetness when replacing refined sugar.
Maple syrup - pure maple syrup is a wonderful, albeit expensive, addition to a whole food kitchen. Best used in small doses as it is refined and very sweet. Did you know it takes somewhere between 20-40 litres of maple sap to produce 1 litre of maple syrup?
Macadamia oil - or other organic oils can be used in this recipe. Consider using almond oil, sunflower oil, olive oil or even butter or ghee if you are happy using animal products.
Milk - in this recipe I use coconut milk, but you could substitute this with milk of your choice. I like using oat milk too.
100g wholemeal spelt flour
80g white spelt flour
40g organic cacao powder
3/4 tsp bi-card of soda (baking soda)
2 tsp apple cider vinegar
2 tsp vanilla essence
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/3 cup rice malt syrup
1/2 cup coconut milk (or other milk of choice)
1/3 cup organic macadamia, sunflower or almond oil (or butter or ghee)
1/4 cup choc chips
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C and prepare a muffin tray (grease or use patty pans).
Sift the flours, cacao powder and bi-carb into a large mixing bowl and stir to combine.
To a separate bowl, add the vinegar, vanilla essence, syrups, milk and oil. Whisk to combine.
Add liquid to dry ingredients and mix to combine.
Gently fold in the chocolate chips.
Let mixture stand for 1-2 minutes.
Spoon mixture into the prepared muffin tray.
Bake for 25-30 minutes.
Remove from oven and leave to cool in the tray for 10 minutes.
Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Enjoy with your favourite cup of tea. These will keep in an air-tight for container for 3-4 days or longer in the fridge.
These muffins can also be iced. A quick, simple and healthy icing can be made as follows:
Place the flesh from one ripe avocado into a high speed blender along with 2 tbsp cacao powder, 1 tsp vanilla, 1/4 cup maple syrup and 1 tbsp tahini. Blitz until smooth. Taste and add more sweetener if required. Spread onto muffins before serving. Keep icing in the fridge.