Baking & cooking with an enthusiastic amateur

Vegan Banana Chocolate Muffins

A basket of muffins is always a welcome sight!

Even just a few months ago, I would have shuddered at the idea of vegan baking. Let’s face it: For us omnivore bakers, some combination of eggs, milk, and butter is key in muffins, brownies, cookies, cupcakes, quick breads, and all our other favorite treats. The idea of removing those lovely ingredients is daunting, at best. I fully expected vegan baking to involve buying a dozen new exotic ingredients like xantham gum, flaxseed, agar agar, egg substitute, butter substitute, and soy milk.

Well, while a lot of vegan cookbooks do call for those things, and I’m sure they expand your options tremendously, you can make vegan muffins with only ONE special ingredient. Yes, one, and not a very unusual or expensive one at that! Heck, if you’re lactose-intolerant or a big fan of soy, you may have it on hand already: Non-dairy milk.

I love the little flecks of dark chocolate in these, created by shattering a chocolate bar before adding it to the batter.

Through some helpful substitution guides online and a little bit of ingenuity, I reinvented my basic banana muffins as vegan banana-chocolate muffins! These muffins held together very well, and had a moist but not heavy texture. If you don’t tell your friends, they won’t be able to tell that these are animal product free! I added some applesauce to compensate for leaving out eggs, and unsweetened vanilla almond milk for a tasty, low-calorie milk substitute. It turns out my favorite type of dark chocolate from Trader Joe’s is already vegan, and I didn’t even know it until I checked the ingredients when shopping for the almond milk!

As a quick note, keep in mind that different people interpret veganism slightly differently. I take it as the generic “No eggs, dairy, meat, or animal products”, but according to my brief internet research some vegans don’t eat granulated sugar, for example. If you’re cooking for someone else with dietary restrictions, ask them what they are and are not able to consume.

I was happily surprised to find that the texture of these muffins was unaffected by the lack of eggs.

Vegan Banana-Chocolate Muffins
3/4 cup rolled oats
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
1/4 cup canola oil
1/2 tsp vanilla
2 bananas, mashed
2 tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
Small bar of vegan dark chocolate (I used Trader Joe’s 72% dark, 1.65 ounces), crushed into small chunks (I used a hammer!)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, mix together the oats, flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. In a separate bowl, combine the almond milk, canola oil, vanilla, bananas, and applesauce. Once mixed well, stir the wet mixture into the dry ingredients. Stir in the chocolate.

Spoon into a greased muffin tin and bake for 20 minutes.

Makes twelve muffins.
Cost per muffin: $0.22
Nutrition per muffin: 163 calories, 7g fat, 1.5g saturated fat, 24g carbs, 2g fiber, 2.5g protein

Whether you’re trying to reduce your intake of animal products, you’re making dinner for a vegan friend, or you just want to try something new, these muffins are a great choice!

On Tweaking:

  • Nearly any type of soy milk or almond milk should work for these muffins. I just selected the unsweetened vanilla milk because it had fewer grams of sugar, and because extra vanilla is always delicious in baked goods!
  • Instead of chocolate, you could mix in blueberries or raspberries.
  • Just two days after making these, I made a second batch where I used 1 3/4 cup flour and no oats, 1/4 cup of applesauce and only 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil, and roughly 2/3 cup of fresh sliced strawberries in place of chocolate. They turned out wonderfully, so if you’d like to make any of those substitutions, they have been successfully tested! This version costs roughly the same, and per muffin has 126 calories, 2.5g fat, 0g saturated fat, 23g carbs, 1.5g fiber, and 2g protein.

One comment on “Vegan Banana Chocolate Muffins

  1. Pingback: July Foodie Penpals | Olympia Food Swap

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This entry was posted on June 13, 2012 by in Brunch, Desserts, Everything Vegetarian, Quick Breads & Muffins, Vegan Fare and tagged , .
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