Happy weekend. Did you know yesterday was cheese pizza day? I went on a four mile run then celebrated by literally inhaling almost an entire margherita pizza chased down by a spicy grapefruit margarita from Burch in Minneapolis. Oh and I can’t forget about the carrot cake either.
Yes, my friday nights are my eat whatever I want nights. And I do take full advantage of it.
If you follow any sort of diet or eat clean, you know that it’s important to have your cheat meals! Those little cheats actually help you to stay on track with your healthy eating habits since typically after you indulge, you end up wanting to get right back to your routine. For me, this is critical. If I miss my cheat meals, I get bored and start feeling like my diet is restrictive. Thus I must find fun and exciting ways to get my little treats in; these muffins are a wonderful way to do it!
I know you probably think I am obsessed with muffins by now. Or all things made with bananas. And that would be true.
I’m choosing to share this particular muffin recipe because it’s one of my go-tos. This past week I posted the recipe on my Instagram and you guys basically went nuts over them. I figured they deserved to be on the blog for easy access, too!
Damn it, just crown me the muffin woman right now. Or not. I don’t know.
These banana muffins are healthy and lightened up from the traditional muffin which can have over 300 calories and be loaded with sugar and fat. I’d rather save my calories for spoonfuls of almond butter. I’ve found in my baking experiments that making healthy baked goods isn’t that difficult; it just takes a little practice. I’ve been making these muffins for over a year and they never fail me.
Here are my simple secret substitutions for lightened up muffins:
Whole wheat flour: We want some whole grains up in these! Whole wheat flour has more nutrition than regular all-purpose. It also adds a nutty delicious flavor to the muffins. Now go buy a bag!
Greek Yogurt: Yogurt takes the place of butter in this recipe. It helps to keep the muffins super moist and adds protein to keep you full. I always use plain nonfat greek yogurt; it has the least amount of sugar and is similar to sour cream so it’s great for baking.
Honey instead of sugar: I used an all natural sweetener instead of sugar. Honey also adds moisture to the muffins and since it’s sweeter than sugar you can actually use less of it. There’s only 1/4 cup in this entire recipe!
Seriously you guys these muffins are the easiest to make and everyone will love them – even kids! I love enjoying one when I’m feeling like I really need a treat. I pop them in the microwave for 10 seconds to reheat then slather them with a little salted almond butter for a treat under 200 calories.
Update! I created a short 1 minute video to show you how to make them:
Enjoy the muffins! Be sure to tag your creations on Instagram with the hashtag #ambitiouskitchen. xo!
- Serves: 12 muffins
- Serving size: 1 muffin
- Calories: 170
- Fat: 4.4g
- Carbohydrates: 29.2g
- Sugar: 14.7g
- Fiber: 2.3g
- Protein: 4.9g
- 1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour or white whole wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3 bananas
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 tablespoon vanilla
- 1 tablespoon olive or coconut oil
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup nonfat plain greek yogurt
- 1 tablespoon unsweetened almond milk
- 1/2 cup chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray 12 cup muffin tin with nonstick cooking spray. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt.
- Add bananas, honey, vanilla, oil, egg, milk and yogurt to a blender. Blend on high for 1 minute or until well combined, smooth and creamy. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Gently fold in chocolate chips.
- Divide batter evenly into muffin tin and bake for 20-25 minutes or until tooth pick comes out clean or with just a few crumbs attached. Cool muffins for 5 minutes then remove and transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling. Muffins are best served warm and even better the next day.
Muffins are freezer friendly! Simply place in ziplock bag or airtight container and freeze up to 3 months. When ready to eat, microwave for 30-45 seconds or thaw out.