Monday, March 5, 2012

Paleo Dino-Muffin Recipe

I recently read a blog that stated people following the Paleo diet should not be baking anything.  This isn't how our ancestors ate.

To that guy, I say welcome to the 21st century.  Our ancestors also didn't have supplements, yet the Paleo community pushes these hard.  All that matters is that people eat more healthy.

With that in mind, I set out to create a balanced, easily portable, healthy Paleo-style snack item.  The biggest challenge was creating some sort of baked good that didn't include any flour or grain.  Think about portable snacks from around the world - empanadas, sandwiches, wraps, gyros, etc.  Common theme - some sort of wheat/corn based wrapper. 

The solution - Almond Meal.  Combine that with some coconut flour for sweetness, and some starch from Potato flour and you have a basic Paleo friendly base for baked goods.

I went with the kitchen sink approach.  The Dino-Muffins included the following ingredients.

  • 4 eggs
  • 2 bananas
  • 1 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 4 tbsp Honey
  • 0.5 Cup cranberries
  • 0.5 Cup chopped onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 sprigs Rosemary, just leaves
  • 1 tbsp organic grass fed butter
  • 12 ounces chicken breast
  • 10 ounces beef liver
  • 1 cup broccoli
  • 0.5 cup carrots
  • 0.5  cup parsnips
  • 0.25 cup rainbow chard
  • 1  lime, juiced
  • 1  lemon, juiced
  • 0.75 cup coconut flour
  • 0.5 tsp baking powder
  • 0.5 tsp baking soda
  • 2 cup almond flour
  • 1 tbsp hemp seeds
  • 0.25 Potato Starch
  • 0.5 cup shredded coconut
 This was a momentous effort.  I already had cooked chicken and beef liver, which I shredded in the food processor.

I then cooked the onions and garlic in butter with rosemary, salt and pepper. 

Next was steaming.  First the carrots and parsnips, then the broccoli, and finally the rainbow chard.  Just a minimal steam to soften the veggies since they would cook again in the muffins.

Two hours later and after almost killing the food processor, all prep was done.  Combined all non-flour ingredients, then sifted together almond meal, coconut flour, potato starch and baking soda/powder.  Combined everything together.   It was then time to "pour" the batter into muffin tins.  But the mixture was more like stuffing, which I had to loosely pack into the liners.  Definitely would need to add more liquids next time.  Topped with either Hemp Seeds or Sunflower Seeds. 

Into the preheated oven at 350 degrees for ~25 minutes.
The result - pretty damn tasty.  They didn't rise much, would need to up the baking soda/powder next time, but overall came out very filling and a nice balance of sweet and savory between the meat filling and cranberry / citrus juice mixture.

The nutritional profile for these Dino-Muffins:
Cal          Fat       Sat Fat      Carbs  Sugar  Protein
240.3    16.7        9.9           16.1      6.7       10.2

Not a bad ratio for a muffins loaded with quality protein and veggies.  Fat content seems high, but it is mostly healthy fats from the coconut oil and almond meal.

Will make again, but given the amount of work, back to chicken breast and steamed veggies for now.

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