The Princess will not eat a whole banana. She has never been a fan, even as a small child. Any attempt to convince her otherwise just results in screaming and that frowny face that sulky children do so well. Yet ask her what type of muffin I should bake and her answer is always, without fail, these banana and cocoa nib spelt muffins. And I have no qualms about making them for her.
These muffins started life many moons ago as your standard white flour, white sugar baked good. Over the years I have tinkered around the edges of the recipe to arrive at this more wholefood version that I am happy to pack in her lunchbox. I’ve previously banged on about my love for cocoa nibs so won’t bore you with the details yet again. If you love them as much as I do, try them in biscuits (cookies) as well. If you’re not a fan, switch them out for chocolate chips instead.
The banana provides most of the sweetness, with the addition of a small amount of unrefined sugar adding a caramel note that compliments the fruit. The muffins freeze really well, so I tend to make a batch and freeze them straight away. The Princess just takes one out of the freezer for her lunchbox each day. She likes to zap them for a few seconds in the microwave although they will probably defrost quite quickly in a lunchbox anyway. Not that she will listen when I tell her that.
The best thing about these muffins though is that The Princess ends up eating bananas, and I avoid the screaming. Win win as far as I am concerned.
Banana & Cocoa Nib Spelt Muffins
The cocoa nibs add some crunch to the muffins without contributing additional sweetness. If cocoa nibs are not your thing, add the same quantity of chocolate chips or chopped chocolate.
- Preheat the oven to 175C (fan forced).
- Place muffin liners in a standard size (12 hole) muffin tin and set aside.
- Place all the dry mix ingredients into a bowl and whisk thoroughly to combine. Set aside.
- In a medium size bowl, cream the butter and sugar together. You can do this with a spoon but I prefer to use a hand held mixer.
- Add the eggs and mix thoroughly.
- Stir in the mashed banana, vanilla and salt, ensuring it is well incorporated.
- Stir in the cocoa nibs and walnuts.
- Add the dry mix to the wet mix and gently fold the dry ingredients in with a spatula. Do not over-mix at this point or your muffins will be dense. You want to mix it only enough such that the dry ingredients are just incorporated.
- Spoon dessertspoonfuls of the mixture into the prepared muffin pans.
- Bake for 20 minutes until they are well risen and golden brown.
- Remove the muffin tin from the oven and allow to sit for five minutes.
- Remove the muffins from the tin and place onto a rack.
- Allow to cool completely.
- Store at room temperature for two days or freeze immediately for up to three months.
I prefer to freeze these muffins immediately and defrost them as required. if you are storing at room temperature, you may wish to reheat them slightly prior to serving.
I use muffin liners in my tins as it makes the muffins easier to remove and also easier to transport. You can easily grease and flour the muffin cavities if you prefer.