Sunday, February 8, 2015

Healthy Carrot Cake Muffins with Cream Cheese Filling

Oh hey strangers!

Hope everyone had a fabulous Christmas and January! I spent my holidays at home in New Brunswick which was nice and relaxing, full of family visits, and wedding planning. I returned to Toronto and dove back into work, tutoring, commuting in the snow, and trying to sell a car. I also got totally sucked into the book/tv series Outlander, and have been reading like a fiend....and totally ignoring the blog.

Which reminds me, this little blog is 4 years old now. Thanks for reading! To celebrate, I am sharing this muffin recipe. I have collected quite a few frozen bananas, and have been put to the task to using them up. For the past couple of Sunday's I have been trying new muffin recipes...which lead to a Frankenstein mishmash of ideas that lead to this...

I started with the concept from Running with Spoons, but converted into Carrot Cake, after my friend Brittany and I were discussing how February 3rd was Carrot Cake Day. These Muffins are actually pretty healthy! Lowish sugar, no oil, no butter, and made with Oats! Yes, there is cream cheese. I'm justifying it by pledging to do a little more working out. I work out for food. Truth.

There is also a full serving of fruit, and good fibre things from the oatmeal, but you won't even know it is "healthy"....they are sneaky Ninjas. Carrot Ninjas. They are pretty much a bowl of oatmeal in muffin form. With cream cheese. Guys..I tried to make it healthy ok, the cream cheese just fell in the bowl.

Mostly Healthy Carrot Cake Muffins

20 minutes Prep
20 minutes cooking

Makes 12 muffins

2.5 cups of whole oats (slow or quick, whatever you have)
0.5 Cups of flour (whole wheat, oat flour, whatever you have)
1/2 Cup of Yogurt (Plain Greek, or Vanilla, or non greek, whatever you have) 
2 eggs (I used 1 XL egg instead)
4 Small defrosted frozen bananas
1/2 Cup of Grated Carrot
Additional 1/4 Cup Grated Carrot (reserved)
1 Cup of crushed Pinapple Drained
1/4 Cup of Brown Sugar 
1 1/2 tsp of baking powder
1/2 tsp of baking soda
2 tsp Cinnamon
1 tsp Vanilla
1/2 tsp Nutmeg
1/4 cup of walnuts (optional)

Cream cheese filling (totally worth it. Do it, don't omit, just don't eat 10 of them at once). 
1/2 Pkg of light cream Cheese (4oz) softened
1/8 Cup of White Sugar

Preheat oven to 375. Grease muffin tins

Add the oats, yogurt, egg, bananas, 3/4 cups grated carrot, pinapple, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, in a food processor. Pulse until oats breakdown. Mix in walnuts and reserved grated carrots. If mixture is too liquidy add flour as needed until batter becomes thick, but not doughy. 

In another bowl mix cream cheese and sugar. Do not eat the whole bowl of cream cheese mixture while waiting for the oven to preheat. DON'T DO IT. 

Pour muffin batter into tins, filling half way. Add a spoonful of cream cheese mixture, then top with muffin batter mix. (Hide the evidence) 

Bake in the oven for 15-17 minutes. 
When they come out of the oven go "Oh how did that cream cheese get in there...oh darn, guess I will have to eat it anyway!"

Check if done if when inserting a toothpick if it comes out dry. 

Enjoy...feel good about eating a healthy version of carrot cake, cream cheese and all!