One of the baking questions I get asked the most, by far, is how to cut the fat and sugar from baked goods and still get a decent-tasting treat. Not gonna lie, I am not a huge fan of fat-free baked goods, mainly because they are usually quite dry and taste, for the most part, like cardboard. Having said that, I’ve discovered that it IS possible to make a great tasting muffin that is actually pretty healthy. These Peanut Butter and Banana muffins manage to stay very moist, despite their relatively low fat content, thanks to the use of olive oil, maple syrup and buttermilk. Using extra-ripe bananas creates a tender crumb as well, while adding natural sweetness. For added texture, I like to add flax seeds and chocolate chips to these muffins. Chopped pecans, walnuts and raisins also taste great.
P.S. These muffins freeze extremely well, too!
- 1/3 cup olive oil*
- 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
- 2 eggs
- 1/3 cup smooth peanut butter
- 3-4 very ripe bananas, mashed (about 1 cup)
- 1/4 cup buttermilk
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup oatmeal
- 1/4 cup flax seeds (optional)
- 1/2 cup chocolate chips (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350F and line muffin pan with paper liners.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the oil and maple syrup.
- Add the eggs, peanut butter, bananas and buttermilk. Mix until fully combined.
- Next, stir in the baking soda, salt, vanilla and cinnamon.
- Using a wooden spoon or spatula, slowly stir in the flours.
- Mix in the oatmeal, flax seeds and chocolate chips (if using.)
- Spoon batter into prepared muffin tin. You can sprinkle a few oatmeal flakes onto each muffin if you like — it makes them look prettier.
- Bake for 22-25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in centre of a muffin comes out clean.
*Yield: 12 muffins
*It is important to use a good quality, fruity extra virgin olive oil in this recipe. If you prefer a more neutral-tasting oil, I suggest unrefined sunflower or grape seed oil.