Morning Glory (“Kitchen Sink”) Muffins
It’s no secret to my family that I love “leftover night”. There is such a great satisfaction gained from cleaning out the refrigerator of a week’s worth of meals, fruits, veggies and cheeses, and starting fresh again. That’s why these muffins speak to me so much. You can put practically anything in them, and they turn out great! Basically, open up your pantry and refrigerator and go to town!
Applesauce, coconut, zucchini, carrots, nuts, raisins, you name it… toss it in there! The ingredient list below looks long and intimidating, but don’t be shy; you really will have most of these items on-hand. If you don’t like something, leave it out or substitute for something else. The batter is so forgiving, it’s hard to mess these muffins up! And best of all, they are so hearty (and mostly healthy) one or two really sustain you until your next meal!
- 2 cups whole wheat flour
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 3 large eggs
- 1/3 cup agave syrup
- 1/2 cup coconut sugar
- 1/2 cup coconut oil, slightly melted
- 1 ripe banana, mashed
- 1 Tablespoon vanilla
- 1/2 cup unsalted walnuts, chopped*
- 1/2 cup orange juice, divided
- 1/3 cup chopped dates
- 1/3 cup raisins or dried cranberries
- 2 cups shredded carrots (about 4 medium)
- 1/2 cup shredded apple (one medium sized)
- 1/2 cup pepitas, divided*
*slightly roasting the nuts and pepitas (for a couple minutes in a dry pan) releases fragrant oils and add a great crunch. Be careful not to burn them, or it will taste bitter.
Preheat the oven to 425° F.
In a small saucepan over very low heat, stir the dates, raisins and only 1/4 cup of orange juice together. Let it simmer, stirring occasionally, until the dates are softened, raisins are plump and the juice has been almost entirely absorbed. Then set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the first seven ingredients. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs. Next add the mashed banana, vanilla, coconut sugar, agave, coconut oil and remaining 1/4 cup juice, mixing until well combined. If the shredded apple is overly juicy, squeeze it slightly in a paper towel to remove the excess moisture. Add the shredded carrots and apple to the wet mixture along with only 1/4 cup pepitas, the walnuts, and the softened raisins and dates.
Fold the entire wet mixture carefully into the dry mixture, without overmixing. (This helps to keep them from turning into lead pucks!) Scoop the batter into a paper lined muffin tin with a large ice cream scoop, and sprinkle the tops with the remaining 1/4 cup pepitas. Bake for 5 minutes, then (without opening the oven door) reduce the temperature to 325° F, and continue baking for another 13-17 minutes.
Remove from the oven and let them cool in the pan for 5 minutes before taking them out to cool completely on a baking grid. I enjoy eating them as they are, but they’re also pretty incredible with a slather of fresh butter or cream cheese (since it’s so similar to carrot cake anyway)!
Yield: 16-17 standard muffins