Grain Free, Nut Free Pumpkin Muffins

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Grain Free, Nut Free Pumpkin Muffins

It never fails, I ended up with 1/2 cup of Pumpkin Puree leftover.  I know I could have frozen the remainder, but instead I decided to make muffins for our Thanksgiving breakfast.  This recipe is full of protein, and leftover muffins can be refrigerated for several days in an airtight container or frozen.

Ingredients:

1 Cup Sun Butter (Almond Butter can be substituted)
1/2 Cup Pumpkin Puree
1/2 Cup Hemp Hearts
3 Eggs
1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda
1/4 teaspoon Sea Salt
1/3 Cup Maple Syrup or Raw Honey
2 teaspoons ground Cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground Ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground Nutmeg
Dash of ground Cloves
1/2 Cup Chocolate Chips or Dried Cranberries

OPTIONAL:  1 to 2 teaspoon freshly squeezed Lemon Juice (See Note Below)

 

The D-Man enjoying his Green Pumpkin Muffins

The D-Man enjoying his Green Pumpkin Muffins

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Prepare a muffin tin with liners or use muffin cups (as shown in the photo)

Combine all but the chocolate chips or cranberries in a medium sized bowl using an electric hand mixer.

Fold in the chocolate chips or cranberries.

Scoop into the prepared muffin tins.

Bake for 20-30 minutes or until the muffins are cooked through.

NOTE:  These muffins will turn GREEN on the inside as they cool.  This is due to the naturally occurring chlorogenic acid found in sunflower seeds.  This is not in any way harmful, in fact, the acid is an antioxidant.  When chlorogenic acid is introduced to an alkaline product, (i.e. baking soda) the chemical reaction causes the baked product to turn green.  If you are squeamish about eating green food simply add a teaspoon or two of fresh lemon juice to your batter, this will reduce the “greening” of your finished product.

Green Pumpkin Muffins, they're not just for Saint Patricks Day!

Green Pumpkin Muffins, they’re not just for Saint Patricks Day!

Breads, Crackers and Muffins, Breakfast

Grain Free Soft Dinner Rolls

Soft Grain Free Dinner Rolls

Soft Grain Free Dinner Rolls

O.K. this is not a beautiful photograph, but I wanted to share this recipe since Thanksgiving is two days away!  We’ll be joining family and bringing dishes to share.  Since we are unable to partake of the dinner rolls being served, I decided to come up with a recipe that we could enjoy.  My guess is that these will be enjoyed by everyone, those who are gluten free and those who are still eating grains.

Ingredients:

1 1/4 Cups Blanched Almond Flour
1/4 Cup + 1 Tablespoon Organic Psyllium Husk
1 heaping Tablespoon Raw Cacao or Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
2 1/4 teaspoons Baking Powder
2 teaspoons Italian Seasonings
1 teaspoon Sea Salt
1/4 teaspoon Organic Onion Powder
Freshly Ground Black Pepper (to taste)
3 Large Egg Whites (preferably from Pastured Eggs)
1/2 Cup Boiling Water
1/2 Cup Strong Hot Coffee
Caraway Seeds (optional)
1 Egg beaten for an egg wash (optional)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Mix all the dry ingredients in a medium sized bowl.

Add the egg whites and blend with an electric hand mixer.

Slowly add the hot coffee and boiling water until a sticky dough has formed.

Scoop approximately 2 tablespoons and roll with oiled or wet hands.

Place the roll on the lined baking sheet and continue the step above.

Brush the formed rolls with the optional egg wash and sprinkle with the optional caraway seeds and a dash of sea salt.

Bake for 45 minutes or until the rolls are firm and browned on the bottom.

This recipe made 12 small dinner rolls.

 

Breads, Crackers and Muffins

Health Benefits of Pumpkin

Chunky Monkey enjoying his Pumpkin Puree

Chunky Monkey enjoying his Pumpkin Puree

In several of my posts I have discussed the health benefits of pumpkin, but I failed to mention that pumpkin is also a healthy treat for your four-legged companions.  Yep, pumpkin is great for felines and canines!  DISCLAIMERI am not a Veterinarian, I am a Nutritional Therapist, if you have questions or concerns about the appropriate feeding of your feline and canine companions please contact your Veterinarian.

Like humans, our 4 legged companions can benefit from the nutrients found in pumpkin.  This member of the squash family is packed with vitamin A, iron, potassium, magnesium, manganese, copper, and zinc.  Pumpkin is also a great source of fiber, antioxidants and essential fatty acids.  Just keep in mind a little goes a long way, 1 or 2 teaspoons of pureed pumpkin is an appropriate serving size as iron, and vitamin A can accumulate to unhealthy levels if overfeeding.

Pumpkin supports a healthy urinary tract in cats and dogs, and some veterinarians recommend pumpkin for avoidance of kidney and bladder stones.  For digestion, the fiber in pumpkin also helps with constipation and diarrhea.  This is an especially good remedy for our Senior kitties or doggies who have a tendency to become constipated.  On the other end of the kitty digestive spectrum we have fur balls!  If your kitty gifts these to you, the addition of a teaspoon of pumpkin to his or her daily diet can help prevent the formation of fur balls (remember, it’s all about the fiber).

If you are preparing fresh pumpkin don’t forget about the pumpkin seeds which are a  great source of plant based Alpha Liniolenic Acid (ALA), an Omega 3.  Pumpkin seeds also contain Zinc which supports the immune system, cell growth, eye and skin health (think glossy coats and sparkly eyes), and is very important for insulin regulation (in humans and our furry friends).  The seeds make a great snack, simply clean the seeds and toss them with a bit of melted coconut oil.  Spread them evenly on a parchment lined baking sheet and place in a 350 degree oven for 10 to 15 minutes.  1 or 2 a day is plenty, and simply put, dogs prefer this treat over cats.  My dogs have always readily taken a seed or two, but my felines enjoy them as a toy, batting them around the floor like a soccer ball.  If you really want kitty to benefit from these healthy treats grinding them and sprinkling on a high quality wet food would be more appropriate.

What type of pumpkin should you feed your pet?  Simply put, plain (no spices or sugars).  Pureed pumpkin, homemade or the organic canned/tetra pack is what we use in our home.  A little goes a long way, so consider a serving size of 1 or 2 teaspoons.  Since a can of organic pumpkin typically contains 15 ounces you would have quite a bit leftover (it only stays fresh for about 1 week in the refrigerator).  To avoid waste,  freeze the remaining pumpkin in an ice cube tray.  After the pumpkin has frozen remove the cubes and store in an airtight container (in your freezer) for future use. When you are ready to serve, simply remove a cube and defrost in a small dish.  It will separate and become watery, so gently mix with a spoon when ready to serve.

I hope your furry companions enjoy pumpkin as ours do.

Health