Sweet Orange Breakfast Muffins (sf/df/gf)

The month of May has been a personal challenge for myself to go without white sugar. At first I thought it was easy – no cake or cookies, and eat sugar free jam. Honey in my coffee. It’s a no brainer, right? Until I discovered that sugar is in amost EVERYTHING.

Mayonaisse. Ketchup. Spaghetti sauce, Peanut butter and even salad dressing. I spent 20 minutes in a grocery store before I realized that going sugar free meant a $200 grocery bill (to replace everything) and decided that maybe my Sugar-free Month was going to be more about giving up desserts, chocolate bars and obvious sources of sugar and overlooking the little things like ketchup and yogurt.

I’ve been good though, even though I’d pay almost anything for a chocolate bar right now. I’m being so careful, buying juice that is 100% with no added sugars, using maple syrup and honey and avoiding all baking if I cant use honey. That’s lead to some failures in the kitchen (chocolate cake and strawberry icecream let-downs) but I’ve also had some surprisingly fantastic successes! Like my Mandarin/Orange Breakfast Muffins…. no sugar, no gluten and no dairy, and they are seriously one of the most delicious breakfast muffins I’ve ever had. The big, juicy chunks of orange are the best part, and it’s a fruit that holds up surprisingly well in the oven.

I’ve made this recipe 2x now. Once with Mandarins and once with oranges. The recipe below is for the oranges, but you can use whichever you prefer, they are both great.

Sweet Orange Breakfast Muffins

1c. brown rice flour
1/2c. white rice flour
1/3c. potato starch
1/3c. tapioca starch
1 tsp. xanthan gum
1/4c. honey
1 tblsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 egg
1/4c. orange juice
2 medium or small oranges
3/4c. almond milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4c. olive oil

preheat oven to 350. Spray your muffin pan with your choice of cooking spray, this will make 12 regular muffins or 6 large.

Zest both oranges. Mix the zest with all the dry ingredients into your mixing bowl and fit the mixer with the paddle attachment. Combine well and set aside.

Peel the oranges (this is best done with a sharp knife now that they have been zested), remove the center and cut into chunky pieces. Try not to squeeze the juice out, a sharp knife will make a quick, clean slice.

Add the egg, honey, oil, almond milk and orange juice to the dry mixture and mix on medium speed for about a minute until well combined. Remove from the mixer and quickly fold in the orange pieces with a spatula. Spoon into the muffin tins immediately (the mixture will start to puff up quickly) and bake at 350 for about 25 minutes, depending on how your oven heats. Use a toothpick to check for doneness.

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Slightly crunchy exterior, moist crumb and big, juicy chunks of orange… a great, healthy breakfast for a spring morning šŸ™‚
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