Banana Maple Pecan Coconut Muffins

Soo... I guess I sort of just disappeared into the blue. No explanation. No reason. Just *poof*! In all seriousness, I just went and came back from the first term of my second year at university. I had planned to actually post another recipe (or two!) before I left, but things, as usual, got busy and it just never ended up happening. The two recipes I was going to post include a gorgeous bircher muesli and THE BEST CAKE I have ever eaten (chocolate fudge cake with espresso buttercream and rich chocolate ganache!). I hope to post these in the near future, but now it's back to the present.

This term just went by so quickly. I have no idea where or how the time flew by. I'm not complaining, though! It means I'm having a blast at university and also means I'm already back home! On another note - this year, unlike last, my accommodation is equipped with a great kitchen! Cooking meals for a single person, however, is much less exciting and much more difficult that I'd have thought. It requires thinking of recipes that can work for one, or making something in large batches that can be used for the week, to planning grocery shopping for at least a few days. I made things ranging from pastas (whole wheat!), to stir fries, to fried rice, to single-serve lasagna and even (my attempt at) daal! Cooking with friends ended up happening once or twice a week and that was simply a blast!

What I didn't unfortunately get around to much was baking. I did bake once or twice for parties and events, but never really for myself. This lack of baking meant that my baking impulses were so strong that I baked an hour after arriving home yesterday.

And that's how these banana maple pecan coconut muffins were born! I had initially thought of making something with apple in it, as we always always always have apples at home so I knew I didn't have to worry about the ingredients. But when I looked around my kitchen, I spotted three overly spotty, slightly overripe bananas. And that's when apples became bananas. But banana bread seemed too mainstream. What else could combine well with banana? And then it hit me - maple and pecan! I wanted to jazz it up even more so I added coconut as well! My sister, as you'll definitely know if you've read some of my other posts, does not appreciate nuts in her baked goods. That's why you'll see some muffins with chocolate chips in the pictures. If you fancy, you can do the same by simply replacing the chopped pecans with the same amount of dark chocolate chips. Or heck, why not just add both?!

No surprise here, but these are delicious, healthy and hearty! Infused with cinnamon and coconut, moistened with banana, coconut oil, almond flour and textured with baby oats - perfection. Grab a mug of tea, coffee or hot chocolate and one of these muffins fresh out of the oven - pure bliss.

Makes 9 large muffins
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup plain flour
1/2 cup almond flour
1/2 cup baby oats
1/4 cup raw sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
pinch of salt
1/2 cup whole milk
3 small ripe bananas, mashed
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
2 tbsp coconut oil, melted
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/3 cup chopped pecans
1/3 cup dessicated coconut
1/4 cup chocolate chips (optional)
coconut flakes, for decorating

Preheat oven to 175 C. Line a muffin tin with 9 cupcake liners and set aside.

Mix together the dry ingredients (except coconut chips!). Mix together the wet ingredients in a separate, larger bowl.

Pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and stir until just combined.

Fill the cupcake liners almost to the top. Decorate with coconut chips and additional chopped pecans or chocolate chips, if desired.

Bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.

Cool in pan for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.


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