Skinny Cherry Banana Muffins

Cherry Banana Cupcakes1

I know I knowwww.. I bake all the time!  Anyone who knows me know about my love for baking & eating baked stuff!!! In fact, if you keep following me here, you might as well believe this to be a baking blog!! 😀

So after disguising myself behind the first 2 posts of salad and appetizer, I decided to come out with this skinny cherry banana muffin recipe.

If you like to kick-start your day with something sweet then these muffins are just what you want! I love muffins and making them a teensy bit healthier is so easy to do. I love to bake them in a small batch of 6 to last me for a couple of days. I can grab one on the way to work and later snack on one after I get home. They are pretty convenient and I don’t feel guilty at all digging in. 😉

Cherry Banana Cupcakes2

Healthy recipes that do not taste healthy at all is like finding a treasure!

I loooveee helthifying recipes as that is the only way I can have them too much! 😛 Plus, these muffins are insanely easy to make. If they weren’t, you can bet all your money that I wouldn’t have baked them on a weekday! Oh yeah, they are that easy and quick to whip up!

Start with some of your wet ingredients: unsweetened Applesauce, some sugar, mashed banana, low-fat buttermilk and vanilla extract. Applesauce is taking the place of butter and oil in this recipe as there is simply no need for the added fat. And min you, if you think these are gonna be dry and crumbly without butter and egg then you are mistaken! I can’t stress enough that these are NOT anything like that. All the wet ingredients mentioned above do a fine job of keeping the baked muffins soft, tender and moist.

There is only 1/4 cup of white sugar in the whole recipe, yielding 6 large muffins. So you get my point when I am repeatedly saying these are extremely healthy and still decadent tasting!

The dry ingredients are simple: whole wheat flour, quick-cooking oats and your leavening agents. You can sift the flour before mixing it with wet ingredients. This step is not necessary and you can skip it.

And the last thing you add? Cherries of course! I used glazed cherries cut into bite size pieces but you can easily replace them with fresh or canned cherries. Plus, a sprinkle of walnuts just before popping them into oven.

Cherry Banana Cupcakes

These muffins taste great with the cup of milk or coffee!

The muffins take an easy 18-20 minutes in the oven. Mine took 20 minutes. Be careful with these though, you don’t want to overbake them, which will lead  to dry, course muffins. Insert a toothpick in one at the 18 minutes mark. If it comes out clean, they are ready. If not, bake for 2 more minutes.

Today’s recipe is perfectly healthy and quick to prepare as no mixer required,  practically taking 10 minutes to prepare the batter. Okay, I’m done convincing you. Make these!! 🙂

Skinny Cherry Banana Muffins

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup Applesauce
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 medium over ripe mashed banana
  • 1/4 cup low-fat buttermilk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 cup quick-cooking oats
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 15-20 glazed cherries, chopped into bite size pieces
  • 2 Tbsp chopped walnuts

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF/180ºC. Line 6-count muffin pan with liners.
  2. In a large bowl, combine apple sauce, sugar, mashed banana, buttermilk and vanilla. Whisk them all together until smooth.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the flour, oats, baking soda and salt. Slowly stir in to the wet ingredients , being careful not to overmix. Get any dry pocket of flour out. Fold in the cherries. The batter will be smooth but not too runny.
  4. Fill paper-lined muffin cups three-fourths full. Sprinkle with walnuts. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
  5. Remove them from the oven and allow them to cool for 5 minutes before removing them from pan to a wire rack to cool completely.

Recipe source: http://cookbybook.wordpress.com

Veggie Shooters

For those who follow my Facebook page would know that I had posted this pic almost 2-3 days back and then happily forgot about posting the recipe. I have been really busy in designing of this blog plus I do have a full-time job to go to & blah.. blah.. blah..

I know its no reason to keep you guys waiting and all these excuses sounds lame even to me! So I am going to keep you all waiting no more and get on with the recipe. 🙂

So this dish, fresh cut vegetables served in individual shot glasses with your favorite dressing makes for an easy, healthy, elegant appetizer. It will be a huge hit for parties!

Another advantage is no double dipping! You don’t have to think about multiple hands going into the same dip bowl!! Eww! Imagine that!!!

Plus, you get portion-control too! 🙂

                                                                                                                    Veggie Shooters1

Think about all the different colored veggies you can use to make it look even more interesting. Raw zucchini or celery would also be great.

Of course you can use store bought dressing for time-saving but whipping up your own batch of low-fat Ranch dressing is super easy. You can make the dip and cut the veggies ahead of time, then assemble when you are ready to serve it. You can easily swap Ranch dressing  for hummus, if you are serving vegans.

This is a kids friendly recipe so it would be a huge hit among them over summer holidays!!! 🙂

Awesome way to skip the chips from your party & to avoid over-eating!!! 😉

Veggie Shooters: Servings: 8

Ingredients:

For the low-fat dip:

  • 1/4 cup low-fat sour cream
  • 1/4 cup low-fat yogurt
  • 3 Tbsp Eggless Lite Mayonnaise (I used American Garden’s)
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 Tbsp fresh chopped chives or dill
  • 1 Tbsp fresh chopped parsley
  • 1 tsp salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 1-2 Tbsp white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 cup low-fat buttermilk

For the veggie crudites:

  • 1 yellow bell pepper, cut into strips
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into strips
  • 1 large English cucumber, cut into strips
  • 2 carrots, cut into strips
  • 8 shot glasses

Directions:

To make the dip: In a small bowl, combine the sour cream, yogurt, mayonnaise, garlic powder, parsley, chives, salt and cracked pepper. Mix well.

Stir in the white balsamic vinegar; the buttermilk. Adjust the seasoning to taste, adjusting the vinegar as needed, the flavors will become bolder over time.

To assemble the shooter: Place 1/4 cup of dip in each glass. Place the strips of vegetables in each glass and serve cold.

This recipe is my entry for Event by Archana’s Kitchen – Summer Fiesta

Baby Potato Salad with Apples & Chives

Hello everyone!

I was am quite excited and nervous to be writing this first post for my beloved blog and I hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed writing it. You should know that I have written and re-written this post about zillion times.. sigh!!

As I said already it is my first post, it is but obvious that hundreds of recipes were racing through my mind to give my blog a grand inauguration I think it deserves! 🙂

After thinking about it for over a day (which seemed like forever!!!), I told my brain to ‘keep it simple, silly!’ 😉

So here I make a humble entrance into blogging world by posting this beautiful summer salad using baby potatoes and apples.

Potato Salad with Apples & Chives2
A perfect side to any elaborate meal/ backyard BBQ/ picnic

Apples add a sweet crunch to every bite of this refreshing potato salad.

You can easily double the recipe if serving a larger crowd.

I hope you enjoy! 🙂

Baby Potato Salad with Apples & Chives

Servings: 5

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup baby potatoes, cut in quarters
  • 2 Tbsp minced celery
  • 1 small onion, finely diced
  • 1 gala apple, peeled and diced into half inch cubes
  • 2 Tbsp minced chives
  • 1 tsp mustard (optional)
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp apple cider / red wine vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp eggless lite mayonnaise (I used American Garden’s)
  • salt and freshly ground pepper

Directions:

Boil potatoes in salted water until soft, approx 10-14 minutes, or until soft if pierced with a fork. Drain and let cool.

While potatoes are boiling, combine onion, celery, mustard, olive oil, vinegar and mayonnaise and season with salt and pepper. Mix and let the flavors marinade while the potatoes cook. Once the potatoes are done and cool, mix into the bowl and add chives and apples, additional salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

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