Monday, October 24, 2011

Pumpkin-Nut Oat Bran Muffins

I am always looking for new things to make for breakfast - especially something quick and easy and something I can grab on the go as I am headed out the door to work. I love oatmeal and cereal during the week, but I also love a good muffin. Too bad all the ones I seem to like are loaded with sugar and a bazillon calories. This is why I usually say no to them (although the banana peanut butter ones Ryan makes are SO good and I can not resist. They aren't that bad for me, right?!). The other downside to muffins is that they never seem to keep me full for longer than an hour or two. I need fiber and protein. Wow, I sound like a 80 year old woman. Nevertheless, my friend Lauren (hi Lauren!), told me about this totally awesome muffin recipe with oat bran and a few other ingredients.

I browsed my pantry and really didn't have any of the ingredients, but I am sure glad that I went out and hunted them down. Most stores these days carry oat bran and agave nectar (Lauren said she found oat bran at Trader Joes), but I found mine at one of the local health food stores. I bet it would have been a lot cheaper if I would have gone to Trader Joes. Mental note for next time.  These muffins are super easy and you don't even need a mixer to make them. I used a bowl and a wooden spoon. I love my Kitchen Aid like no other, but I love recipes that can be done with a bowl and a spoon. Easy peasy.

Lauren made a couple of different versions - banana and applesauce if my memory serves me right. Those sounded awesome, but since I am on such a huge pumpkin kick these days, I thought I would make pumpkin ones. Yum, right?  They were totally delicious and totally filling. Not to mention totally low in calories. These bad boys kept me full all through my busy morning at work and I really wasn't hungry until lunch time. SCORE!  Just note, that when you are making these, the batter will seem super thick and slightly dry. You are doing it right, that's just how it is. That and they don't really rise much in the oven, so don't be surprised by that either. They are dense and scrumptious. If you are looking for a new breakfast item that fills you up and keeps you going strong, this is it!

just a few ingredients

wet & dry

all mixed together

baked and ready to eat. not sure why this only made 11.

Pumpkin- Nut Oat Bran Muffins (sightly adapted from

 2-1/4 cups oat bran
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
2 egg whites
2 tablespoons agave nectar  (or honey)
1/4 cup pecans, chopped (or whatever nut you like)

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line a standard muffin tin with paper cups.

In a large bowl, whisk together the oat bran, baking powder and brown sugar. In a separate medium bowl, mix together the mashed bananas, egg whites and agave nectar.  Add the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and whisk until combined. Fold in the nuts. Divide the batter evenly between the 12 muffin cups. Bake until the muffins are lightly browned and a knife inserted in the center comes out clean, about 12 to 15 minutes. Cool the muffins in the pan for 5 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.

See, how easy was that? These awesome muffins ring in at about 110 calories a piece. Great calorie deal for such a filling little thing. If you like, you can even heat these up in the microwave and top them with your favorite jam (or butter). Oooh, honey would be good too. These are great just how they are, and I love them. I think I am going to try Lauren's applesauce version with chopped apples in them. I am already salivating.


  1. This is the most forgiving recipe ever, you can throw pretty much whatever you fancy in (and I have!). I even did a chocolate one recently! Having pieces of apple in the applesauce ones sounds really good, my applesauce batch turned out a little plainer than I'd have liked!

  2. oooh, chocolate sounds fab in these. I might have to try these soon. Did you use chocolate chips or cocoa powder?