Lemon Blueberry Granola Muffins
I came across an organic lemon blueberry granola in Ollies Discount Store that was very reasonably priced at $ 1.50. I checked the brand on line (Cascadian Farms) and found that it retails for almost $ 4.00! I swooped up my bargain granola and headed home with all of the other finds I came across that day including a huge container of dried bay leaves for $ 3.00. They were not organic but these will do for when I burn bay leave for sort of a smudging/energy clearing. I also lucked up on some organic vegetable broth, activated charcoal bath salts, a great seek-and-find monster book for VJ the grand-Sun, a luxurious set of 1000 thread count sheets in aqua and a selenite crystal lamp! Yep. Talk about a variety store! (Come to think of it, I think I got my Himalayan salt lamp there too.)
I have to limit my visits to Ollie's because between the discount books, journals, towels, kitchen ware and gadgets, I am endlessly tempted. They *do* have an interesting food dehydrator there for $80.00. Although I still need to look up the brand and assess its quality, I have my eye out for when it goes on sale or for one of their relatively frequent coupons. Speaking of which, when I got to the counter I asked the cashier if there were any current coupons. She said there was one in effect but since I didn't have my "Ollie card" with me she wasn't able to automatically apply the discount. She suggested I check online. A quick e-mail search on my phone yielded the desired coupon, complete with scannable barcode for 15% off the entire purchase. Even better. I left feeling like a bargain BOSS!
By the time I got home, a brisk snow was falling and I was glad to be calling it a day. I got all cozy and put on some music to chop vegetables for a homemade soup. I opened the box of granola to snack on while I was cooking. Immediately I realized that this was no ordinary granola! There were tiny freeze dried blueberries with an airy, crisp tartness. There were delicious pumpkin seeds in there and a vibrant fresh lemony taste throughout the crunchy oats. For me, it screamed CAKE! I decided that muffins would be good and searched the good old Pinterest for ideas. I came across a vegan pumpkin granola muffin recipe that would fit the bill but I didn't want them to be pumpkins spice muffins. the recipe called for a can of pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spices. I substituted the pumpkin for with a can of organic butternut squash and left out all of the pie spices and viola! Lemon blueberry healthy deliciousness!
These were so good with my morning coffee, fruit and some honey goat cheese on the side. To keep it vegan, try them plain or with some vegan butter. They are dense but not heavy. Lightly sweet and breakfasty, not desserty. I will munch on these all weekend and freeze whatever manages to be left over.
Here is the recipe:
Prep Time: 13 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 38 minutes
Yield: 12 muffins
1-1/4 cups organic butternut squash puree (I used canned)
1/2 cup coconut-almond milk (or other desired milk)
1/2 cup applesauce, unsweetened
1/4 cup maple syrup (or raw honey)
2 tbsp melted coconut oil (or other mild tasting oil or melted vegan butter)
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 tsp baking powder, aluminum free
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1-1/2 cups flour
2 cups lemon blueberry granola, save 1/2 cup for sprinkling on top of the muffins (don't be afraid to try your favorite granola blend)
1/2 cup dried blueberries (because more blueberries is yum.)
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour muffin pan with vegan butter and flour or spray with cooking spray or line muffin tin with liners or use silicone muffin tin.
In a large mixing bowl, add butternut squash puree, milk, applesauce, maple syrup, oil, vanilla, baking powder, baking soda and salt; whisk well to combine. Add flour and 1 1/2 cup granola; stir to mix. Do not over mix. Add walnuts and give batter a few more stirs.
Using large ice cream scoop, fill 12 openings with batter and garnish with remaining 1/2 cup granola. Bake for 25 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the centre of the muffin comes out clean. Remove from the oven and let cool for 10-15 minutes.
Store: Store in a glass airtight container in a cool dry place for up to 3 – 4 days, in a fridge for up to a week or in a freezer for up to 3 months.
Giving credit where due: This recipe was adapted from the Ifoodreal blog and the original recipe can be found here.