I am a spinach monster. Over the past week, I have singlehandedly consumed an entire 1-pound container of baby spinach from Costco. Although my family does eat a lot of vegetables, none of our dinners last week required spinach, so the huge container remained untouched. I absolutely hate seeing good food go to waste, so I took it upon myself to eat it all for my lunches and snacks.
Usually I try to incorporate spinach into my meals more creatively, but since I had SO much, I ended up cramming most of it into my daily green monster smoothies. I’m sure my nutrient intake was phenomenal, but I was pretty tired of my spinach overload by the end of the week.
Yesterday, I had just a few handfuls of spinach leftover, but I felt like I would turn absolutely green if I had another smoothie. I’d been wanting to try baking with spinach, so this was the perfect opportunity. I thought about baking a savory spinach bread, but I decided a sweet one would be more interesting. After a quick search, I found a recipe for Green Monster Muffins – just like my smoothies, but in muffin form!
These are probably the healthiest muffins that I’ve ever had in my entire life. They’re made with whole wheat flour, very little oil, and lots of spinach! And they’re actually really tasty!! The muffins are slightly sweet and citrusy, and the spinach flavor is undetectable. My family didn’t love these muffins as much as I did, but at least I got them to eat their leafy greens! :)
Green Monster Muffins
Source: slightly adapted from The Chic Life
- 1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 large egg
- 2/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1 cup PACKED baby spinach, washed and chopped finely in a food processor
- 3 tablespoons canola oil
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest (I used lime zest)
- chopped walnuts for topping
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and spray a 12 cup muffin tin (or 24 cup mini muffin tin) with cooking spray.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, and baking soda.
3. In a separate bowl, beat together egg and sugar until light. Then whisk in applesauce, chopped spinach, oil, vanilla, and lemon zest. Add in flour mixture and stir until just combined. Do not overmix.
4. Divide batter evenly among prepared muffin cups. Sprinkle with chopped walnuts. Bake in preheated oven for 14-17 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center of muffin comes out clean.