When we got rid of boxed cold breakfast cereals at our house it could have been a really big change with lots of drama and complaining. But it ended up not being that big of a deal. I chose breakfast to be the first meal to commit to preparing with real, whole foods when we started our journey to healthy eating. My kids enjoyed having a different kind of muffin each morning and they never really noticed the lack of Peanutbutter Bumpers until several weeks later, and by then they had gotten out of the habit of cold cereal.
These chocolate muffins are a delicious homemade alternative to those white boxes of junk-filled pastries lining tables near grocery store checkout lines. Start the batter the night before. It will help to save time in the morning plus you will get a nutritional boost from the overnight soak which helps eliminate anti-nutrients in the wheat. Use the best quality chocolate chip you can find. Try to find one with chocolate instead of sugar as the first ingredient, and always avoid anything made with hydrogenated oils or corn syrup. I like to use mini chips because they distribute better throughout the muffin. I only use 1/2 cup of the minis.
- 1¾ cup whole wheat pastry flour (preferably freshly ground)
- 1 cup buttermilk OR kefir OR yogurt thinned with water
- ⅔ cup Dutch process cocoa
- 1 cup sucanat
- 2 eggs (preferably from pastured hens)
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- ¼ cup melted or very soft butter
- ¼ cup melted coconut oil
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ¾ tsp sea salt
- ½ to ¾ cup semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate chips
- The night before you plan to bake combine the whole wheat pastry flour and the buttermilk to form a sticky dough.
- Cover the bowl with a plate or plastic wrap and let it sit out on the counter overnight or at least 7 hours.
- Measure out the rest of the dry ingredients (keep the soda, powder and salt in a separate bowl) to save extra time in the morning.
- The next morning preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Butter a standard muffin pan or line with muffin papers.
- Then transfer the soaked dough to the bowl of a food processor or electric mixer.
- Add the cocoa, sucanat, vanilla, melted butter and melted coconut oil. (You can use all butter or all coconut oil but I like the flavor of the combination.)
- Pulse the mixture a few times (or mix on the lowest speed taking care not to splash) until the ball of soaked dough begins to smooth out and the ingredients begin to incorporate.
- Add the eggs, processing in between each one, and mix until the dough becomes more of a batter consistency.
- Combine the baking powder, baking soda and salt in a small bowl and then add to the batter.
- Process until combined. The batter will begin to puff up as the leavening starts working.
- Quickly add in the chocolate chips and pulse just to get them mixed in but not chopped up.
- Scoop the batter equally into the twelve muffin cups. They will be fairly full. Bake in the preheated 375 degree oven for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean.
- Remove from the oven and let them sit in the tins for about 3 minutes then remove to a cooling rack.
- If you have used muffin papers you will want to let them cool an additional 15 minutes before peeling off the paper.
These muffins are chocolatey and tender and delicious just as they are. But if you want to gild the lily you can split them and smear on a little butter or homemade raspberry jam.
If you find yourself in need of cupcakes to take to a church party or school activity you can make these muffins and top them with homemade butter frosting for a much better alternative to the store bought bakery cupcakes.
To learn more about baking all kinds of breads made more nutritiously with soaking the flour check out Well Fed Family’s Breads DVD!
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This blog was shared on Wellness Wednesdays.