Sunday, 3 October 2010

Healthy Blueberry Muffins

Blueberries are not my favourite fruit. I often find blueberry muffins in cafes quite dull. But Sylvia loves them and so does E. We bought a couple of punnets last week and weren’t eating them very quickly so I decided to make muffins but not like the plain ones you frequently find on sale.

I make muffins regularly enough that my two favourite muffin cookbooks are now missing in action. So I searched the web and decided to adapt a recipe for Cranberry and Oat Muffins. I recently bought some LSA – a ground mix of linseed (flax), sunflower seeds and almonds – that I don’t have a clue how to use so I am putting it into baking. I also added some molasses because I love the depth of flavour it gives.

I made the muffins while watching Love, Lust and Lies (a fantastic documentary by Gillian Armstrong that follows the lives of three fortysomethings). They tasted amazing warm out of the oven late at night. The next morning I worried they were a bit dense and heavy but the jammy juicy blueberries gave them the lift they needed.

One reason for making the muffins was to be able to offer Sylvia a healthy(ish) snack. Quite a few were crumbled to bits and the berries spat out. Finally she enjoyed one yesterday morning. It was a sunny morning so we sat outside after hanging out the washing. I tried reading the paper with a pen beside me ready for some Sudoku. Sylvia managed to scribble over the article I was reading until I could barely decipher the text. So I got out her textas so she could do some drawing. It is one of her favourite things to do right now.

Munching on a muffin was just what was needed to complete a relaxing morning. Maybe Sylvia chose to eat some of one because she had a day where she ate quite well. She had two small tins of baked beans for lunch and a sausage roll for afternoon tea when we visited our neighbours for the second grand final in two weeks. Ostensibly we were there to watch the footy but it was such a lovely day that we sat outside with the kids and ran inside occasionally to check the score.

The last muffin was eaten this morning just before heading out to the city but I will leave that story for another post. But I will tell you that these are wonderful low-sugar, low-fat muffins full of texture and flavour. Great for a quick breakfast, for lunchboxes or for snacks. Definitely a recipe I will return to next time I have surplus blueberries.

Previously on Green Gourmet Giraffe:
This time last year: Nicki’s Nana’s Chulent
This time two years ago: Lentil Salad and the Dream Festival

Blueberry Oat Muffins
adapted from Allrecipes
Makes 12 muffins

  • ¾ cup rolled oats*
  • ¾ cup plain flour
  • ¾ cup wholemeal flour
  • ¼ cup wheatgerm*
  • ¼ cup LSA (ground linseeds, sunflower seeds and almonds) or more wheatgerm
  • ¼ cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 350ml buttermilk (I used 200g tub of yoghurt topped up with milk to make 350ml)
  • 1 tbsp molasses (or treacle or maple syrup or honey)
  • ¼ cup (60ml) canola oil
  • 1 medium egg
  • 125g (I punnet) fresh blueberries

* The recipe suggested toasting the oats for 10 minutes and also toasting the wheatgerm. I didn’t do this because I wanted a quick recipe.

Preheat the oven to 190°C. Grease or line (with paper cups) a 12 hole muffins pan.

Mix the dry ingredients together in a large mixing bowl. Lightly whisk the wet ingredients (except blueberries) in a large jug or small bowl. (I used a jug to mix the milk and yoghurt and added the remaining wet ingredients to it.) Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and mix till combined. Gently stir in blueberries.

Spoon muffins mixture into prepared muffins pans. I found they were quite full but didn’t rise a lot. Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown and a skewer comes out cleanly when inserted in the middle. Cool on a wire rack.

On the Stereo:
Least complicated: Indigo Girls


  1. Lovely sounding muffins and glad Sylvia got to appreciate them in the end. Not thought of using ground linseed in baked goods. I grind seeds up and put it in our porridge sometimes. Next time I make muffins, I must remember to do this. Like the molasses idea to.

  2. Think they'd be ok with frozen berries? I'd really like to make these!

  3. I met muffins when I was studying in the States and I loved them ever since. All types all flavors. I love yours as well.

  4. Wow, those do sound incredibly healthy--and also delicious. I can't imagine anyone not loving blueberries, butthen again, my other fruit options are currently limited. ;) The LSA (which I don't think we have over here) actually sounds yummy--I'd sprinkle it over cereal or oatmeal or add to oatmeal cookie dough, or even a smoothie. :)

  5. I put LSA in porridge, or in muesli (raw or tasted) when I make it. I also add a tablespoon to smoothies or milkshakes (then they're healthier, right?)
    ~Sarah B

  6. Bookmarked! Do you think I could sub the wheatgerm and LSA for flaxmeal? Also, while I'd love to have some fresh blueberries in my life, the darn things were $7 a punnet at Woolies today. Methinks some frozen berries are in my future instead!

  7. lsa is great just sprinkle over everything.. yohurt.. fruit.. put in smoothies.. porridge.. this morning I had tahini on toast with some lsa (and a honey piece of toast with sunflower seeds)

    its SO good for you!

    great muffins will definitely make!

  8. We were watching Love, Lust & Lies too. :-)

    Haven't made blueberry muffins for years! They're not much my favourite either, but I suspect Michael would love 'em.

  9. love the choice of music to accompany you through your bake off :o)

  10. Thanks Choclette - I love adding molasses to baked goods - it gives more depth of taste and makes sure they aren't too sweet - I like to think it adds iron but not sure about this

    Thanks Wendy - I think frozen blueberries would be just as good - though I wonder if they would be quite as jammy and it might affect the cooking time. But I wouldn't hesitate to use them

    Thanks Katerina - I think it was in the 1990s the muffins were all the rage here - though I get confused between muffin and cupcakes at times

    Thanks Ricki - like the idea of adding LSA to cookie dough - I have seen it in recipes and not sure if it is just one company making it or if it is more common - but it seems a great mix of nutrients

    Thanks Sarah - have tried it in muesli (thumbs up) but haven't made many smoothies lately - however may do so with summer coming

    Thanks Hannah - am sure linseeds or flaxseeds would be fine to sub for wheatgerm and LSA - I am always excited at ways to use up my wheatgerm and my LSA. Blueberries were $3.70 today at the supermarket - hope your are coming down in price too

    Thanks Carla - LSA on toast sounds like a good idea - wonder how it would go with promite???

    Thanks Cindy - great doco! These muffins would work with other fruit too - maybe I should try them with other berries!

    Thanks Nic - Sylvia and I had a nice dance to Indigo Girls - makes the food cook better!

  11. Aww isn't Sylvia growing now! And I would have thought that if you made muffins often, then your muffin cookbooks wouldn't go missing! :P

  12. Will be trying this one out with the kiddies for sure!
    My MIL put me onto LSA a few years back and it's great. I often use it to replace or in co-operation with breadcrumbs for crumbing or sprinkling on top of gratins. I sprinkled it on top of my salad tonight... yummo!

  13. thanks Lorraine - she is growing - you can even see a bit of her hair in the photo which is now down to her shoulders. I can't believe that both the muffin recipe books I love are lost - I am sure I will stumble upon them some time but they are safer in the shelves than in my piles!!!

    Thanks Bianca - great ideas for LSA - must try those

  14. I looove healthy muffin recipes like this!! Thanks Johanna. :) I also love the cat on Sylvia's shirt. ;)


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