Espresso Banana Muffins…

If you have never seen or read Super Natural Cooking, by Heidi Swanon, give it a whirl, especially if you like to look for sugar and flour alternatives in your baking and cooking lifestyle.  This is hands down my favorite cookbook right now. Plus, I love that she did all her own photography and the book is gorgeous to look at.

I have to give one particular recipe a special nod: the espresso banana muffins, holy delicious. There was no adapting on my part, just pure following the recipe, which I am rarely able to do.  I made them for breakfast, and they have disappeared already…with a little help from our friends of course. The hint of espresso is just genius and they are the perfect breakfast…with the exception of chocolate cake of course.

Espresso Banana Muffins…

2 cups white whole-wheat flour

2 tsp aluminum-free baking powder

½ tsp fine-grain sea salt

1 ¼ cups chopped toasted walnuts

1 tbs fine espresso powder

6 tbs unsalted butter, room temperature

¾ cups natural cane sugar

2 large eggs

2 tsp vanilla extract

1 cup plain yogurt

1 ½ cups mashed overripe bananas (about 3 large bananas)

Heat oven to 375 degrees, line muffin cups with paper liners.

Combine flour, baking powder, salt, ¾ cup walnuts, and the espresso powder in a bowl and whisk to combine.

In a separate large bowl or a stand mixer, cream the butter until light and fluffy. Beat in the sugar and then the eggs, one at a time.  Stir in the vanilla, yogurt, and mashed bananas, then briefly and gently mix in the dry ingredients; overmixing will result in tough muffins.

Spoon into the prepared muffin tin, top with the remaining ½ cup of walnuts, and bake until golden, about 25 minutes.  Fill the cups 2/3 full for regular muffins or to the brim for a big topped version.  Cool in the tin for 5 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Makes 12 muffins.

One adaptation I did try is making mini muffins with the same recipe, in a small muffin tin without papers.  I baked them at the same temperature, and just watched them until they turned golden brown.  They are delicious and cute.  We also added a little homemade cream cheese frosting which worked nicely.

Cook together, toast to each other, and enjoy!


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