The Munch Box

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Nutritious Lemon Cranberry Minute Muffin

ramekin

Who doesn’t love muffins? Certainly no one I know! It’s such a shame that most muffins break the calorie bank at upwards of 400 or 500 calories (here’s looking at you Tim’s), leaving all of us to munch on bird seed. Now you needn’t look farther than this post to indulge, without worries, in your muffin related desires!

If you’ve been on a Low-Carb diet, chances are you’ll know about the One Minute Muffin. These fantastic treats are heaven for a Carb-Concious dieter because they’re fast, delicious and can be made without the temptation of a dozen other muffins from a batch. All they require is some sort of flour/meal, sweetener or sugar, egg/egg whites and butter. The rest is up to you!

As I promised you, here is another delicious, wholesome and fast recipe; The Lemon Cranberry Minute Muffin. This muffin boasts a relatively low carb count, no added sugars, a healthy dose of fat and an incredible 6 grams of fibre, plus it won’t spike your blood sugar up to ungodly heights. My version here is made with both flax meal and organic coconut flour, but can be substituted for almond flour/oat flour/whole wheat flour if desired.

Lemon Cranberry Minute Muffin

1 tbsp flax meal*

1.5 tbsp coconut flour*

2.5 tbsp of egg whites

1 tbsp dried cranberries

1-2 packets of Stevia* or other sweetner

1/2 tsp baking powder

1 tbsp melted margarine or butter

1/4 tsp vanilla extract

2-3 tbsp water

 1 pinch of lemon zest (finely grated peel of a fresh lemon)

lemonflax

Step One: Mix flax meal, coconut flour,  lemon zest, sweetener, and crasins  together in small bowl

Step Two: Mix egg whites with water in seperate bowl, then add melted butter and vanilla extract.

Step Three: Combine wet ingredients with dry ingredients with a spoon until well blended.

Step Four: Grease small ramekin and spoon batter into it. Place in the microwave for 1 minute.

Step Five: Remove from microwave with towel, and let cool for 1 or two minutes.  When cooled flip over ramekin and let muffin  slip out.

Optional step: slice in half and add butter, cream cheese or sugar free jam on each of the sides for a yummy addition to breakfast!

LemonCranberryflax

Nutritional info: Calories 250, Net Carbohydrates: 10, Fat: 17, Protein: 8 grams

When choosing my ingredients for this version of the recipe, I chose the ingredients that gave me the health benefits that I wanted. Both flax meal and coconut flour are high and fibre and low in carbs, and make a good pair when combined. Lemon is also a great way to add taste without added sugar, and its also one of my favourite flavours in baked goods. However, most of the ingredients as mentioned, can be substituted, especially for those who are afraid of fat (since I have used Becel Olive Oil Margarine which has 8 g per 2 tsp), because reduced fat margarine will work just the same.

Here are some links to other Minute Muffin Recipes that I have enjoyed!

Gingerbread One Minute Muffin: http://bakingandlosing.blogspot.ca/2011/09/1-minute-muffin.html

Chocolate One Minute Muffin: http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-detail.asp?recipe=153406

A More Savory Version: http://healthylivinghowto.com/1/post/2011/09/one-minute-muffin.html

* if you are not familiar with Flax Meal, Coconut Flour or Stevia, heres a little bit about each. All can be found in health food stores or in the health food section.

Flax meal: This “flour” is just the result of grinding up flax seeds, it’s nearly all fibre and no carbs and super nutritious. However it doesn’t combine well like flour, so when using ONLY flax meal in baking make sure you are constantly stirring before cooking.

Coconut flour: This flour is relatively new to me (my mom bought it for me the other day), but just like Flax Meal it has a ton of health benefits and it’s high in fibre and low in carbs. Unlike flax however coconut flour combines fairly well, and can substitute for wheat in some cases.

Stevia: One of my favourite things in the world, Stevia is an ALL-NATURAL sweetner made from the Stevia plant. This sweetner is perfect for health nuts, because it sweetens without calories and without artificial, chemicals. Be careful though, unlike Splenda or other sweeteners, Stevia is 100 times sweeter than sugar, so if replacing sugar make sure you are doing the proper conversions or you’ll make something unbearably  sweet.

Happy Munching!

The Healthy Banana Split

bananasplit3

Now one thing you will come to know through this blog is that I have an incredible sweet tooth. I am an avid lover of confectionary deliciousness, especially of the baked goods variety! But, since I have adopted a lower in carbs diet, most of these things are out of the question.

This recipe is an ice-creamless, healthy and wholesome version of a traditional Banana Split, and fantastic alternative option for anyone who has a sweet tooth. I generally only eat this as a post-work out snack, with a no-carb protein shake, because bananas’ are an incredible recovery food, but are too “carby” to eat at any other time of the day. However this could be a smash hit dessert for those who aren’t on low carb diets, and I’m sure it would even be a great option for dessert or breakfast for kids!

So without further delay!

The Healthy Banana Split

1 medium sized Banana

1 tbsp melted all-natural (or regular) peanut butter

1 small handful of walnut pieces (can be substituted with other nuts)

1 dash of ground cinnamon

1 tbsp black chia seeds (optional)

One: Split your banana lengthwise down the centre and carefully pull the two halves away from eachother

Two: Melt your tablespoon of peanut butter and drizzle over both sides of the banana. Spread with knife if you wish to evenly distribute over the two sides.

Three: Add your toppings. I listed walnuts, cinnamon and chia seeds, but this recipe can be changed with a little creativity!

Optional Step: After topping your banana, pop it in the microwave for 20 seconds to have a meltier treat! Yum!

bananasplit

Nutrition information: Calories: 305, Net Carbohydrates: 27, Fat: 17 g, Protein: 9 g.

Additional Info: Vegan/Vegetarian, Wheat Free

I eat this delicious bad boy with a fork and knife, but you could eat with your hands if you’re feeling adventurous. Happy snacking!

A Student on a Mission

I love food.

It took me a long time in my life to realize and accept that food was a passion of mine. As someone who used to be over-weight, you’re taught to escape your love of food and to suppress it. But I can’t. I’m not a seasoned cook, an expert at nutrition or a trained professional, but my creative mind and curiosity has allowed me through the recent years to become increasingly good in creating small recipes that are not only delicious and healthy, but easy to make. Oh, and not budget breaking, because like most students, I have to stretch every penny.

And I know it’s hard as a student to take the time to eat well, especially when cafeteria and fast food is cheap, and easy to acquire. These foods leave you time to hang with friends and do homework (or procrastinate!), but here I’m on a mission to share the fast little recipes and tricks that I incorporate into my diet to make me feel good and healthy. So please, put down the KD, and Mr. Noodles. Please!

And who am I you may ask? I’m Cora, a normal freshman in college, who has a passion for delicious, wholesome food. Over the last 2 years, I’ve manage to lose 40 pounds by cleaning my bad eating habits up, and getting regular exercise. I’m not perfect, in fact part why I’ve started this blog to motivate me to enter the next journey of my body transformation with strength training. But perfection isn’t needed to be healthy, and I hope the things I share with you, from my simple experience as being a normal 20 year old, will improve the lives and make happier the taste buds of other fellow students (and everyone else!) who are sick of pizza and fries.

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