Spiced Butternut Chia Muffins

After some higher temperatures at the start of the year, it seems that we’re in for cold weather again. Let’s just hope it snows! I can’t bear the thought of having a snowless winter. It just doesn’t seem right. 

To help us snuggle up on the couch on a wintry day, I’ve created these cute, moist little muffins. Enjoy them with a cup of tea or hot coca. Or maybe a homemade spiced pumpkin latte. Too much pumpkin/butternut? Never!


Feel free to substitute stevia for the brown sugar if you want to keep these low-sugar. In fact, go ahead and do that, because odds are you won’t just have one muffin. (Who ever has one muffin, really?!)

The chia seeds lend some protein to this recipe. They also contain tons of antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids–you know, that stuff sceptics always say you can only get from fish and if you’re a vegan you’re going to die yaddi yadda… Add to that calcium, potassium, iron and magnesium, this little seed is super good for you! 


Make these muffins with wholemeal flour if you can; this releases energy more slowly so you don’t get an energy slump later. 

The butternut squash will make these muffins very moist. If you don’t want that, add a bit less butternut, but don’t know it till you’ve tried: these muffins are absolute moist bliss. The butternut squash also adds some vitamins to the muffins, as well as important minerals (zinc, iron, potassium, etc.), and all that for few calories. 



Nutrition info:

Each muffin contains 174 calories, 7.58g fat, no cholesterol at all, 23.54g carbohydrates, 3g dietary fiber, 7.71g sugars and 2.82g protein.


Spiced Butternut Chia Muffins

Yields 9 smallish muffins
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Baking time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:
180g wholemeal self-raising flour
60g brown sugar (or half the amount in Stevia)
100ml non-dairy milk*
50ml canola/rapeseed oil
200g butternut squash, mashed
2 tsps mixed spices (nutmeg, cinnamon, ground cloves, ginger)
2 tbsps chia seeds

*Soya milk is always perfect for binding all the ingredients together, but feel free to use some almond or hazelnut milk in this recipe: it gives a delicious nutty flavour to the muffins, which really compliments the butternut and the spices.

Instructions:
Combine the dry ingredients, the spices and the chia seeds. Add the milk and oil and combine well. Then add the butternut squash. Spoon the batter into muffin tins and pop these in a preheated oven at 180ºC for 30 minutes. Keep checking that they don’t burn or bake too fast, as each oven is slightly different. 


Irresistible!

Times are tough, there’s no denying it. Does that mean you should stop baking muffins to save up a few pennies? Hell no! It’s perfectly manageable to still eat well and indulge in treats without cracking the piggy bank. These little darlings only cost £1.02 to make. That’s only 11p per muffin! Cheap as chips. If you’re only baking for yourself, divide the recipe by 3 and make 33p’s worth of treats for yourself. Cheaper than buying a chocolate bar, and so much more satisfying. 

I tweeked the pictures with Pixlr-o-matic, a supercool online free programme that allows you to edit pictures. The first two photos were edited with the vintage effect ‘Peter’, the last two photos with ‘Julia’. It seems fitting, since I love vintage pictures, food and Julia Child. 



— Clem

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