• Whole Wheat Banana Muffins with Maple Frosting

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    These muffins are beyond delicious.  They are moist and flavorful and you would never know that they are healthyish!

    Think banana bread meets maple frosting.

    Think muffin meets cupcake.

    Think delicious.

    I combined two different recipes to create these muffins.

    Muffin recipe from Two Peas and Their Pod.  Frosting Recipe from Crazy for Crust.

    Ingredients:

    • 2 c. whole-wheat flour
    • 1 tsp. baking powder
    • 1 tsp. baking soda
    • 1/2 tsp. salt
    • 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
    • 4 large ripe bananas (about 1 3/4 c. mashed)
    • 1 c. packed brown sugar
    • 1/4 c. coconut oil, melted and cooled
    • 1 large egg
    • 1/2 c. plain Greek yogurt
    • 2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
    • Turbinado sugar, for sprinkling on muffins before baking, optional

    Frosting Ingredients:

    • 3 TBSP unsalted butter, melted
    • 1 c. powdered sugar
    • 1/2 tsp. maple extract
    • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
    • Milk or heavy whipping cream

    Directions:

    1. Preheat the oven to 350*F. Line a muffin pan with paper liners, spray with cooking spray, and set aside.
    2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside.
    3. Peel the bananas and mash with a fork. Place the mashed bananas in a large bowl. Add the brown sugar, coconut oil, egg, Greek yogurt, and vanilla extract. Stir until well combined. Slowly stir in the dry ingredients. Mix until just combined.
    4. Fill muffin liners three-quarters full. Bake until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean, about 20 minutes. Transfer to wire rack to cool.
    5. For the frosting: whisk melted butter and powdered sugar. Add extracts, whisk until smooth. Add milk or heavy whipping cream (to desired consistency…start with just a small amount (1-2 tsp.) at a time and add more, if necessary), whisk until smooth. Immediately frost completely cooled muffins.

    Whole Wheat Banana Muffins with Maple Frosting:
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  • Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes

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    These cupcakes are so decadently delicious!  The recipe comes from Taste of Home Cake Mix Treats, and if you love chocolate and peanut butter you’ll love these cupcakes!!!!

    Ingredients:

    • 1 package chocolate cake mix
    • 1 1/4 c. water
    • 1/2 c. peanut butter
    • 1/3 c. canola oil
    • 3 eggs
    • 24 miniature peanut butter cups

    Frosting:

    • 12 oz. semisweet chocolate, chopped
    • 1 1/3 c. heavy whipping cream
    • 2/3 c. peanut butter
    • Additional peanut butter cups, chopped

    Directions:

    1. In a large bowl, combine cake mix, water, peanut butter, oil, and eggs; beat on low speed for 30 seconds.  Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes, or until smooth.
    2. Fill paper lined muffin cups half full.  Place peanut butter cup in the center of each cupcake.  Cover each with 1 TBSP batter.
    3. Bake at 350 for 18-22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.  Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.
    4. Place chocolate in a small bowl.  In a small saucepan, bring cream just to a boil.  Pour over chocolate; whisk until smooth.  Stir in peanut butter.  Cool, stirring occasionally, to room temperature or until ganache reaches a spreading consistency, about 10 minutes.
    5. Spread over cupcakes; immediately sprinkle with additional peanut butter cups.  Let stand until set.

    ****Don’t use reduced fat or generic brands of peanut butter.

     Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes:

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  • Chocolate Mint Cupcakes

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    If you like chocolate and mint together like I do, you’ll enjoy these cupcakes.  My frosting didn’t turn out fluffy…more like marshmallow fluff, which I suspect is due to me being too impatient and not letting it beat long enough in the mixer.  It still tasted delicious though.

    I got this recipe from Taste and Tell, who got it from How to Eat a Cupcake, who got it from Crazy about Cupcakes…got that? ;)

    Chocolate Mint Cupcakes Ingredients:

    • 1/4 c. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    • 3/4 c. granulated sugar
    • 1/3 c. (2 ounces) unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped, melted
    • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
    • 1 tsp. peppermint extract (I used mint)
    • 1/2 c. chocolate milk
    • 1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
    • 1 tsp. baking soda
    • 1/2 c. (6 ounces) mini semi-sweet chocolate chips

    Directions:

    1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Insert liners into a medium cupcake pan.
    2. In a large bowl cream together the butter and sugar with an electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3-5 minutes. Beat the melted chocolate into the butter mixture. Add the eggs, peppermint extract, and chocolate milk. Beat until creamy.
    3. In a separate medium-sized bowl combine the flour and baking soda.
    4. Add the dry ingredients to the chocolate mixture and beat until well blended (DO NOT OVER BEAT). With a rubber spatula, stir in the chocolate chips.
    5. Fill the cupcake liners 2/3-3/4 full. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool cupcakes in pan.

    Mint Frosting Ingredients:

    • 3 egg whites
    • 1 c. granulated sugar
    • 3/4 c. (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    • 1 1/2 tsp. peppermint extract (I used mint)
    • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract

    Directions:

    1. Put egg whites and sugar in a double boiler over simmering water. Whisking constantly, cook until sugar has dissolved and mixture is warm (about 160 degrees).
    2. Pour heated egg mixture into a clean bowl of a mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat egg white mixture on high speed until it forms stiff (but not dry) peaks. Continue beating until fluffy and cooled, about 6 minutes (It’s very important to beat it for the whole 6 minutes).
    3. Switch to the paddle attachment. With mixer on medium-low, add butter several tablespoons at a time, beating well after each addition. (If frosting appears soupy or separated after all butter has been added, beat on medium-high speed until smooth again, 3 to 5 minutes more.)
    4. Beat in extracts. Reduce speed to low; beat 2 minutes to eliminate air bubbles. Stir with a rubber spatula until smooth.

    Chocolate Mint Cupcakes:

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  • Black Bottom Cupcakes

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    I came across a black bottom cupcake recipe at Annie’s Eats (adapted from David Lebovitz).  I’ve never made homemade cupcakes before (gasp!)…I guess I never realized how easy it is and how tasty they are!  My mother-in-law makes a similar cupcake for Christmas, and since -s loves those I thought I’d give these a shot.  They are so tasty, and I’m sure -s can’t wait to get home from his business trip to give them a try.

    Ingredients:

    For the filling:

    • 8 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
    • 1/3 c. granulated sugar
    • 1 large egg, at room temperature
    • 1/4 c. of mini chocolate chips

     

    For the cupcakes:

    • 1 ½ c. all-purpose flour
    • 1 c. firmly packed light brown sugar
    • 5 TBSP unsweetened cocoa powder
    • 1 tsp. baking soda
    • ¼ tsp. salt
    • 1 c. water
    • 1/3 c. vegetable oil
    • 1 TBSP white or cider vinegar
    • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

    Directions:

    1. To make the filling, whisk the cream cheese, granulated sugar and egg until smooth.  Stir in chopped chocolate pieces.  Set aside.
    2. To make the cupcakes, adjust a rack to the center of the oven and preheat to 350°.  Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners (my batch made 15 cupcakes).
    3. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, brown sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt.  In a separate bowl mix together the water, oil, vinegar and vanilla extract.  Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and stir in the wet ingredients, stirring just until smooth.  Stir any longer and you will over-mix the batter, and end up with less-than-tender cupcakes.
    4. Divide the batter among the muffin cups.  Spoon a few tablespoons of the filling into the center of each cupcake, dividing the filling evenly.  This will fill the cups almost completely, which is fine.  Bake for 25 minutes, or until the tops are slightly golden brown and the cupcakes feel springy when gently pressed.  These will keep unrefrigerated for 2-3 days in an airtight container.
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    What the cupcakes looked like just before going into the oven
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    Finished product

    Black Bottom Cupcakes:

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