If you know our family, or even just follow me on social media, you know my kids have food allergies. They're a very rare form of food allergies; Graham is diagnosed with FPIES, which was just finally given a medical code this year. Hopefully that will allow more doctors to have heard of it and understand what it is; prior to its official coding, you had to go to specialists and jump through a whole lot of hoops before a diagnosis could be made. Jude is too young for an official diagnosis but is showing strong signs of a similar condition. Oh, and my husband is gluten intolerant.
So, food is kind of a big deal in our house. It's big financially, as our grocery bill is currently double our mortgage (!!); it's big for obvious health reasons; it's big emotionally, as food reactions take days to recover from, are scary, and result in behavior problems. We just got over one, in fact, after the boys ate some meat that was supposed to be soy/corn free, but wasn't. We've had days of clinginess and crying, upset tummies, ADHD behavior, pooping accidents in stores, middle-of-the-night wakes by both, skin rashes, eczema...fun!
Food is also a big deal because of nutrition. Trying to keep good vitamin and protein in a system that sometimes fights them can be tricky, so I'm constantly trying new recipes and ideas to see what will work...and that they'll both eat! I'm asked a lot to share recipes or how I change ingredients to make them work, so I thought I'd start sharing some of our favorites here on the blog!
I came up with this one after finding this recipe on Pinterest. A few tweaks and it's loaded with good stuff, plus they're actually tasty! Note: plan to make the batter in the evening if you want muffins in the morning, or in the morning if you want afternoon muffins...the soaking is important!
Yield: Appx. 18 muffins
- 3 flax eggs (click link if you don't know how to make a flax egg)
- 1 cup grapeseed or safflower oil
- 3/4 cup pure maple syrup
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups frozen spinach, chopped (we used what we had frozen from the garden and I just smooshed it up!)
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons baking powder substitute (again, click link for how to make! I make a small mason jar full of this and keep in the pantry so it's ready to go.)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 2 cups fresh blueberries
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flax eggs, oil, and maple syrup until combined. Add the vanilla and spinach; stir to combine.
- In a separate bowl, stir together the flour, salt, baking powder substitute, baking soda, and cinnamon. Add the blueberries and mix gently; this is to prevent the berries from settling to the bottom of the muffins.
- Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and stir until just combined.
- Put into the fridge overnight (or for at least 8 hours). This helps everything a) break down a little so it's better for the tummy and b) helps to ensure the muffins will rise and have a good consistency, which can be tricky when not using eggs or baking powder!
- In the morning, line muffin tins with paper liners, or grease with a little oil. Scoop batter into muffin tins.
- Bake about 25 minutes, until the tops are golden brown. Cool in the pan for a few minutes, then remove the muffins from the muffin pan and cool the rest of the way on a rack.
My kids both loved these, so I plan to make them periodically and freeze half, so we can cut down on the work and still have fresh, healthy muffins on the go!