after posting the almond milk recipe a few days ago, i planned to share with you a recipe that would put your almond pulp to good use. in the past i have made some pretty great rosemary+thyme almond pulp crackers, but the recipe i followed made less than 20 crackers – they were far too delicious for there to be so few! needless to say, i tried to fix what wasn’t broken to try to get more bank for my buck, and the turn out was a total flop. HOWEVER, i promise you that i will put good use to your almond pulp, kids, and together we can enjoy all of our homemade almond-y goodness.
you know how when the last thing you made, or baked, or cooked was a complete disappointment and you feel this fire in your belly (i think this can be referred to as stubbornness) to make something totally AWESOME to reassure the fact that you’re awesome? yeah. that was me yesterday. i wasn’t going to let those crackers bring me down. when you don’t wanna play no games and you want to make something totally awesome, turning to the classics is probably your best bet. so that’s what i did. sure, i could have played with the season and made something pumpkin-spicy, but i’m not much of a pumpkin-y person. i appreciate them in all of their cuteness, and will gladly place them around my home, but we don’t get along in kitchen terms.
OK. enough. so yesterday i decided to up my game in terms of banana bread. banana bread has always been my favorite – that undeniable smell that wafts from the oven as it’s doing it’s thing, could practically bring me to my knees. but i didn’t want to just make plain ol’ banana bread, i wanted to put them bananas on a pedestal and make them shine.
around here, muffins get a whole lot more appreciation than loaves for some reason; maybe it’s the sense that your portion is all yours, or somethin’. i dunno. personally, as cute as muffins are, i reeeeeaaaallllyyy dislike washing muffin pans. so if i can get away with a loaf, you bet your butt that’s what i’ll do. but not yesterday.
these banana muffins will burst with flavour in your mouth. they’re totally decadent enough to treat as an after-dinner dessert, but hearty enough to stand on their own as a breakfast in the busy mornings.
Kelsi’s Caramelized Banana Nut Muffins
(vegan, oil free)
- 1 tbsp ground flax (fresh is best!) + 3 tbsp water
- 4 small-medium bananas
- 1 1/2-2/3 cup almond milk (depending on size of bananas)
- 1/3-1/2 cup organic coconut sugar (can sub. organic brown cane sugar)
- 3 tbsp maple syrup, divided
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup coconut flour (optional, can sub. more whole wheat)
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 cup raw walnuts, finely chopped (optional – if nut-free, could sub. dairy free chocolate chips or shredded coconut)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and grease a standard muffin pan with coconut oil or other mild-flavoured oil (if you plan to use muffin liners, make sure they are parchment non-stick as there is no oil in the muffins themselves and could stick to regular paper liners quite easily).
- Cut bananas down the middle length-ways and cut into thirds. Cook in a non-stick pan on medium heat with a bit of coconut oil (or other mild oil (canola, grapeseed, etc)) until they are caramelized and quite soft. In the same pan, toast walnuts (if using) until fragrant and add 1 tbsp maple syrup, caramelizing the nuts. Once toasty, remove nuts from heat and set aside.
- Whisk together ground flax seed and water for a moment and set aside to thicken.
- Sift together flours, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.
- Mash bananas and add in flax mixture and remaining wet ingredients. Stir until thoroughly combined. Add wet mixture to dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Gently fold in walnuts.
- Divide batter evenly into muffin pan. Sprinkle organic cane sugar over the tops for added flavour and texture (optional). Cook for 18-24 minutes, until edges are slightly golden (due to the lack of oil, these muffins tops won’t go as golden as other muffins containing oil) and the tops feel firm and springy to touch.
- Allow muffins to rest in muffin pan for 5-10 minutes, or until comfortable to touch and allow for further cooling on muffin rack. Enjoy warm!
the real difference in these muffins is the caramelizing of the bananas and the walnuts prior to cooking, so while i totally suggest you take the extra time to do this, you caaaaan skip it if you really don’t want to (SHAME! 😉 bahaha). this step also works in your favor if your bananas aren’t quite to their peak baking point (super spotty and ripe).
i hope you enjoy my take on a classic!