Category Archives: Breakfast

Hot Lemon Water

I have been trying to solidify the habit of drinking hot lemon water in the mornings, for quite some time, like for 2 years. I would start up, and remember to do it for a day or two, but inevitably, I would forget and then it was over. The reason I wanted to make this a daily habit was because I’ve heard its  praises sung for such a long time from so many different sources. Having warm lemon water in the morning helps flush out toxins and aids digestion(warm liquids will help keep you regular; it loosens up stuff…and this is a much healthier choice than coffee) . Lemons are also a high alkaline food; having alkaline blood (rather than acidic) (ph balance) makes it harder for cancers and other diseases to flourish. Lemons also: strengthen liver, help cure common cold, reduce inflammation in joints and knees as it dissolves uric acid, are good for your skin, maintain health of eyes, help replenish body salts (especially after a hard work out).

A couple of months ago I decided to start the hot lemon water habit in the mornings again, but this time I came with a plan on when and how I was going to incorporate this into my morning routine and I’m happy to say that I’m still going strong! In the morning, after I read scriptures/meditate and exercise, I then drink my hot lemon water, and while I’m drinking it, I make up my green smoothie which I drink throughout the morning as I’m running kids to school and getting ready.

So, give this a try! Begin each day with a hot/warm cup of lemon water. Oh and a word of caution: lemons can be hard on our enamel, so brush your teeth shortly after you finish your lemon water, which you should be doing in the morning anyway ;).

This is my quick and easy way to make lemon water:

  1. Fill my mug with cool water

2. dump cool water into my small saucepan and turn stove on high (I don’t like to just pour water in because I usually pour too much which makes it take longer to heat up). I like this saucepan with the pour spout…makes pouring less messy for me.

3. Meanwhile, cut a lemon in half, stick your lemon juicer on top of your mug, and squeeze the juice out

4. This is usually the perfect amount of time for my water to heat up to a hot but not boiling temperature. Pour water into mug with lemon juice. Drink immediately.

Hot Lemon Water

1/2 lemon
water

Fill a mug with cool water. Dump cool water into  small saucepan and turn stove on high (I don’t like to just pour water in because I usually pour too much which makes it take longer to heat up). Meanwhile, cut a lemon in half, stick your lemon juicer on top of your mug, and squeeze the juice out. This is usually the perfect amount of time for my water to heat up to a hot, but not boiling, temperature. Pour water into mug with lemon juice. Drink immediately.

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Broccoli Cheddar Rolls

These broccoli cheddar rolls were inspired from a Lionhouse Pantry cook book. I made these Cheddar Broccoli rolls to go with our traditional ‘breakfast for dinner’ a couple of Sundays ago and it was AMAZING! Okay, Scott and I thought they were amazing, but the kids mostly wouldn’t even touch them because they had green broccoli sticking out of the top. But that was okay with us because Scott and I devoured them, and happily ate the leftovers the next two days. The leftovers were also fabulous, I just warmed them up for about 10 seconds in my microwave and then ate in on the side of a salad or whatever else I was having.

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The dough for this bread is the same whole wheat bread dough I use for our cinnamon rolls. You can grab that recipe here. As a side note, I doubled that recipe when I made these so that I could also make a batch of cinnamon rolls :).

I forgot to take a picture of the dough rolled up, but here’s an older one I took that works just as well. I just want you to see a few things here: I roll out a rectangle onto my floured counter, and then I take my floss (I keep an unscented floss in my kitchen for this very reason) and mark where I’m going to cut, and then I go back with my floss, get it under the dough, and then I use the floss to come up and around the dough and cut it. They make beautiful cuts and they don’t smoosh the dough at all.

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Our son, Chef Charles here, loves to help me in the kitchen which I love! Cooking is so fun when we do it with those we love.

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You could cover it with saran wrap and stick it in the fridge, or leave it out on your counter, if you’re not going to bake it for a little while. They should be great to bake the next morning if you wanted to make it as an overnight roll, and you’d follow the same instructions on the ‘cinnamon roll’ recipe post for that.

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Slather them with melted butter,

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And then bake them for 10ish minutes until some of the edges are light golden, and they’re done!

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Broccoli Cheddar Rolls
*makes about 20 rolls

1 recipe dough for my whole wheat cinnamon rolls
1 c chopped broccoli (or 1, 10 0z frozen bag chopped broccoli thawed and drained)
1 c grated cheddar cheese
1/4 c dried minced onions
1 egg
1 tsp sea salt
2 Tbsp Parmesan cheese
2 Tbsp butter, melted

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. After dough has completed rising, turn out onto a floured surface. Roll out dough into a large rectangle, about 21 inches by 16 inches.  Mix broccoli, cheddar cheese, onions, egg, salt, Parmesan cheese in a small bowl. Spread broccoli mixture over dough. Tightly roll up the dough, jelly roll style. Cut dough into 20 slices. Place slices in cavities of a muffin pan sprayed with cooking spray, or on a greased baking sheet. Brush with melted butter.  Place in preheated oven and  cook 10-15 minutes. Remove from pan and cool on wire rack. Makes 20 rolls.

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Filed under Breads, Breakfast

Powdered Peanut Butter & Banana Protein Shake

For those of you who follow me on instagram(elisa_realfoodsmom), you’ll recognize this recipe from a post I did last week.

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I found this powdered peanut butter on sale at Sprouts and picked it up when I saw there were only three ingredients and no refined sugar (peanuts, salt and coconut sugar, which is unrefined).

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Since then we’ve made multiple batches of peanut butter and banana protein shakes! You could also sub the powdered stuff for all natural peanut butter, 1:1 ratio (if you’re watching calories though, the powdered is the way to go).

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THE RECIPE:

Powdered Peanut Butter and Banana Protein Shake
*Makes about 14 oz

10oz unsweetened almond milk
2 tbsp powdered peanut butter
1 scoop vanilla protein powder (I like sunwarrior vegan mix)
1/2 frozen banana
4 ice cubes

Blend until smooth. Makes about 14 oz!

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Filed under Breakfast, Smoothies, Snacks/Sides/Appetizers, vegan

Spirulina Power Green Smoothie

I’ve been playing around with my green smoothie recipe, wanting to use both chia seeds and spirulina powder as they have so many health benefits. The tricky part is coming up with a recipe that tastes good when spirulina powder is added. But after playing around a bit, I found one that is delicious and my kids think so too! This recipe makes about 24 oz which means it makes just enough for me for breakfast :).

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THE RECIPE:

Spirulina Power Green Smoothie
*makes 24 oz

10 oz cool water
1 Tbsp chia seeds
1/2 tsp spirulina powder
4 c power green mix (spinach, kale and chard)
5 baby carrots
1/2 lemon, peel cut off
1/2 apple, cored
1 frozen banana
1/2 c frozen blueberries

Pour water into high power blender and add chia seeds. Allow the chia seeds to soak for a few minutes, and in the meantime gather and prep your other ingredients. Add spirulina, greens and carrots and blend until combined, about 10 seconds. Add the remaining ingredients and blend on medium power, until smooth (I take my blendtec through two full cycles of blending to get it to the smooth consistency I like). Drink immediately.

*chia seeds get thick and gel-like when they sit in liquid, so if you don’t drink this all right away, store it in a jar in the fridge and before drinking, give it a shake.

-Why a “power” green smoothie

  • chia seeds are considered a super food, high in omega-3 fat, which is something most people don’t get in their typical diet unless they’re regularly eating fish or taking fish oil, also a good source of protein and fiber as well as vitamins and minerals
  • spirulina powder is an algae, fresh water plant, and is also a super food. It is full of minerals and vitamins and is a good source of protein
  • lemons are alkaline and are a cleansing food, also high in vitamin c and antioxidants
  • bananas are high in potassium and are especially a great food to consume before or after exercising. Good source of vitamins, minerals and fiber
  • blueberries are very high in antioxidants and a good source of vitamin c
  • spinach, kale and chard are high in fiber and they act as a broom in your body and sweep up and clear out heavy metals and toxins, also high in vitamin A and vitamin C

324 calories; 4 g fat, 70 g carbs, 10 g protein

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Filed under Breakfast, gluten-free, Smoothies, vegan

Pumpkin Coconut Breakfast Cookies

I hope you all had a nice Christmas; it is my absolute favorite holiday! I love the lights, the music, the food, I love acting out the nativity with our family and reading the Christmas story and one of my favorite things is having Scott around for several days in a row. This year we were so pleased that his parents were able to join us for Christmas from NC, and Scott was home for almost a week straight which was heaven on earth!

I am so excited to share this breakfast cookie recipe because I am loving them! It’s more of a quick, grab-and-g0 healthy snack or breakfast, rather than a dessert-type cookie. I freeze almost the entire batch and then eat one or two a day, straight out of the freezer; they don’t require any thawing time. If you don’t freeze them, just know that they are a softer cookie and I think after day two you’ll find they get even softer when stored in a tupperware so you’d probably want to freeze them after a couple of days. I waited a day before I froze mine. For those of you that care, each cookie is 100 calories when you make 36 cookies(I’m doing My Fitness Pal again for a short time which I don’t love, but because of all the yummy Christmas foods we still have around the house, I’ve been snacking way too often so this’ll help keep me in check). I found this recipe in this month’s  Runners World magazine, which was submitted by Elyse Kopecky and though her recipe only makes 20 cookies, I found when I used my cookie scoop, 36 was a more accurate amount. If you make them bigger, then obviously, the calorie count per cookie will be higher.

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Here are the ingredients:

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You can buy almond flour, or you can grind your own if you have a high power blender. I just straight up throw in whole, raw almonds and grind them for several seconds, mix it with a rubber spatula, grind for several more seconds, and it’s done!

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I added raisins and a handful of chopped walnuts but you can leave them plain or add some chocolate chips or whatever else you like.

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I mix all my ingredients together in a large mixing bowl with a wooden spoon.

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 I baked these on my silicone mats. I love these baking mats because of ease of clean up and I love that I can slide the whole mat off the cookie sheet and onto a cooling rack with the cookies all in place and it only takes a second.

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Have them cool completely before storing them in a tupperware or in freezer ziploc bags.

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Have a safe and Happy New Year!

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THE RECIPE:

Pumpkin Coconut Breakfast Cookies
*Makes about 3 dozen

2 c almond flour (I make my own grinding a little less than 2 c, whole raw almonds in my Blendtec)
1 1/2 c rolled oats
1 c unsweetened shredded coconut
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp sea salt

1 c pumpkin puree
1/2 c pure maple syrup
1/2 c melted coconut oil
optional: 1/4 c raisins, chopped dates, walnuts or chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a cookie sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper and set aside. In a large mixing bowl add your flour, oats, coconut, cinnamon and salt. In a small mixing bowl combine your pumpkin, syrup, and oil. Add the pumpkin mixture to the dry ingredients and stir to combine. Add in any optional raisins, nuts, chocolate chips etc and stir until incorporated. Using a cookie scoop, scoop out dough and place on cookie sheet baking for about 25 minutes, until golden(check after 20). Makes 3 dozen cookies.

You can eat these right away or store in a tupperware container for a couple of days. They are also great cold and I like to freeze most of mine and eat them straight out of the freezer (they don’t require any thawing time because they’re a softer cookies).

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Filed under Breakfast, Desserts, gluten-free, Snacks/Sides/Appetizers, vegan

Cranberry Ginger Green Smoothie

Green smoothies are a staple in our house. I have had one every morning for the past 6+ years. I have a basic recipe I follow (water, greens, fruit), but it changes slightly through out the year, depending on what fruits are in season etc.

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After Thanksgiving I had half a bag of cranberries leftover that I decided to freeze, not sure what I was going to do with them, and then when I went to make my green smoothie that morning, I pulled open the freezer drawer to grab some frozen fruit and there they were, just waiting to be used. I also cut up fresh ginger root, into small maybe 1/8 inch slices, and freeze those as well. Be sure to keep them in a ‘freezer’ ziploc bag. I’ve had trouble with freeze burned foods when I try to freeze them in normal sandwich bags.

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Start with your water and greens, and blend them in a high power blender until smooth. Then add in your fruit. I use about 10 cranberries which is around 1/4 cup. And here’s my half a lemon with the peel cut off, and my slice of ginger. In the recipe I put the lemon as optional, and that’s because it tastes great with or without, I just love using it because lemons are so alkaline and a great cleanser, but it’s okay if you don’t use it. Blend everything until it’s smooth, which is two, 50-second cycles on my Blendtec.

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I love this Pioneer Woman mason jar I got at Walmart last year. I use it every day. I love the handle because I often drink this smoothie as I’m driving kids to school in the morning and it’s nice to have something to hold onto to…less spills for me this way :). Enjoy!

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THE RECIPE:

Cranberry Ginger Green Smoothie (vegan, gf)

*makes about 40 oz

12 oz cold water
2 handfuls power greens (mixture of spinach, kale and chard. Can do just spinach)
1 stalk celery, cut in half
optional: 1 small handful parsley (parsley removes toxins and metals from your body; great cleanser)
optional: 1/2 lemon, peel cut off (another great cleanser and very alkaline)
1 apple, cored
1 banana, peeled
10 frozen cranberries (about 1/4 cup)
1/8” thick slice of ginger (fresh or frozen)
1 c frozen strawberries
1 c frozen pineapple (or frozen blueberries)

Pour water into high power blender. Add in greens and blend until smooth. Add remaining ingredients and blend until smooth (My Blendtec gets to the consistency that I like in  two, 50 second cycles).

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Filed under Breakfast, Smoothies, vegan

Baked Hashbrowns

We love your typical breakfast foods like waffles, pancakes, eggs, hash browns etc, but most days we don’t have time to make an elaborate breakfast, so we stick to things we have one hand, or faster foods like granola, green smoothies, toast or oatmeal for the everyday. Sunday is generally the only day of the week that we actually have time and want to make a big breakfast, but that being said, this year we have church at 9am(it changes each year) and often times Scott has meetings before church so we’ve made it a weekly tradition to have breakfast for dinner on Sundays.

Home made, baked hash browns are one of the breakfast items we make frequently (feel free to search my ‘recipe’ tab for more of our favorite breakfast recipes). For our family of 7, we usually use 2-3 large russet potatoes which we peel and cut into 1/2 inch cubes, sprinkle with oil and spices and cook for about half hour until they’re golden brown on the edges (I LOVE crispy hash browns! And you know they’re getting crispy when they’re browning on the edges..just watch it because you don’t’ want them burning). This many potatoes leaves us with zero leftovers, but that’s okay because we prefer hash browns fresh out of the oven so they’re nice and crisp.

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We cook our hash browns on silicone baking mats, but parchment papers works great too. By the way, right now Costco has a 3 pack of silicone mats (2 big, one small) for around $18. I bought one before I knew they had them at Costco, for $15! One! So I bought the one’s from Costco as well :), and now I have plenty.

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THE RECIPE:

Baked Hashbrowns
*Serves 6

2-3 large russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch cubes
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2- 1 tsp sea salt (1/2 tsp if you prefer less salt in your foods)
1/4 tsp ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 420 degrees. Line a baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper. On the pan or in a large mixing bowl, drizzle the cubed potatoes with olive oil, sprinkle with spices and mix together. Spread out over pan so they’re not overlapping, and bake for 20 minutes, pull out and stir, and put back in oven for another 5-10 minutes until edges are lightly browned. Allow to cool for a couple of minutes in the pan. Serve warm.

 

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Overnight Oats (in a jar)

I’ve seen recipes for  overnight oats posted on instagram and pinterest for some time now, and I finally decided to give them a try when my running buddy mentioned that she makes these weekly, the night before a busy day, and then just grabs it out of the fridge in the morning and takes it along with her. Some days are busier than others and having a healthy and filling snack on hand and ready to go, is so nice. Like oatmeal, these overnight oats have a mushy consistency; the chia seeds and oats soften with the milk and yogurt, and the yogurt gives it a little bit of a tang,but you also get the sweetness from the syrup and the optional grated apple. I really like this, though I know oatmeal and mushy dishes aren’t everyone’s thing, but give it a try before you judge!

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I took this picture below, right after I combined all the ingredients and stirred them together, so as you can see, the oats and chia seeds haven’t yet softened. If you decide to use steel cut oats, just make sure you really do let this sit overnight, or for at least 8 hours. You can get away with 4 hours with regular rolled oats, in fact I do that all the time, throwing this together in the morning and eating it for lunch or as a late afternoon snack.

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THE RECIPE:

Overnight Oats (in a jar)

1/2 c rolled oats (can also do steel cut if you like the chewier texture)
1 Tbsp chia seeds
2 Tbsp plain yogurt
2/3 c unsweetened almond milk
1 Tbsp pure maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
optional: 1/4 apple, grated (I prefer without skin)

Combine all ingredients in a 12-16 oz mason jar and stir to combine. Cover with a lid and allow to sit overnight, or at least 4 hours (8+ hours if using steel cut oats; steel cut would be fine left in fridge for a couple of days). Eat chilled.

 

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Buttermilk Syrup

This is another Chef Brad recipe. I know it looks like chocolate, and in fact, my 4 year old calls this the ‘chocolate syrup’, but there’s not chocolate in this recipe; the dark color comes from coconut sugar which is a very dark brown. I love that this buttermilk syrup is made from coconut sugar; it’s still super yummy but coconut sugar doesn’t have the same impact on your blood sugar as normal sugar which is nice.

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Pictured I have my vanilla coconut sugar (right) and my plain old coconut sugar (left), both of which would work perfect for this recipe. I normally just use the plain coconut sugar but the vanilla was on sale so I gave it a try. You’re going to melt your butter in a medium/large saucepan over medium high heat(do not use a smaller saucepan as it bubbles and rises and you’d have a big mess on your hands). Then you’ll add in your sugar, butter milk and vanilla and bring it to a boil.

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Turn the heat down and simmer it for a couple of minutes so it can thicken slightly, then remove from heat and stir in your baking soda and it’ll bubble and thicken a little more.

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Serve this warm over pancakes, waffles, french toast etc (I put the link for the cottage cheese pancakes here but if you’d like to see more pancake recipes, I have a couple more under my recipe tab). It gets a little frothy at the top so give it a quick stir before you serve it.

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And if you want, you can add a little bit of coconut whipped cream, or any whipped cream for that matter.

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THE RECIPE:

Buttermilk Syrup- lightly adapted from Chef Brad

1 c butter
1 c buttermilk (can use whole milk or almond milk with 1 Tbsp lemon juice)
3 c coconut sugar (or another sugar; which will leave it a much lighter color)
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp baking soda
*do not double

Melt butter in a medium saucepan or medium heat. Add buttermilk, coconut sugar, and vanilla and bring to a boil. Turn heat down and simmer for a couple of minutes. Remove from heat, stir in baking soda and serve warm over pancakes, waffles, or French Toast.

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Applesauce Muffins with Streusel Topping

I frequently read recipe books and magazines; these applesauce muffins are a recipe I lightly adapted from the most recent Costco magazine, and they are so good! My husband ate 3 the day I made them, and he is not a big guy and doesn’t eat a whole lot. I love that the original recipe used applesauce and honey for the sweetener and fat/oil. I substituted half spelt and half whole wheat flour for the white flour in this recipe, but really you could do any combination.

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My tip for speeding up the muffin making process and for more even size muffins, is to use an ice cream scoop to divy out the batter.

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If you want to make any mini muffins, you can use a cookie dough scoop.

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This recipe makes about a dozen muffins, which doesn’t seem worth the time and effort for my family of 7, so I double it which made 24 regular sized muffins plus half a dozen mini muffins.

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I use coconut sugar for the streusel, which is an unrefined sugar, and it’s amazing!

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Applesauce Muffins with Streusel Topping

*makes 1 dozen muffins; can easily be doubled

Streusel Topping:

1/3 c coconut sugar (or brown sugar)
1/4 c whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 Tbsp butter, melted

Muffins:

2 c flour (I use 1 c whole white wheat flour and 1 c spelt flour)
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground allspice
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/4 c unsweetened applesauce
1 egg
1/3 c honey

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease a 12 count muffin tin or line with paper/silicone muffin liners. Mix the streusel ingredients together until small clumps form; set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together the applesauce, egg and honey until combined. Add in the flour, nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice, salt and baking powder and stir to combine. Pour the batter into the prepared muffin tin using an ice cream scoop. Sprinkle streusel topping over the batter and bake about 15 minutes or until toothpick inserted in middle, comes out clean. Carefully remove muffins to cooling rack (may need a knife or fork to help loosen muffin from around edges).

*If you want to make some mini muffins, decrease the baking time to 10 minutes, and I use a cookie scoop to fill those mini muffin cups.

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Filed under Breads, Breakfast, Snacks/Sides/Appetizers