I get inspired (and such a thrill) when weelicious moms send me their ideas for new recipes, though occasionally some of the suggestions can seem out there. Not too long ago, a mom sent me a recipe she had seen on a blog that was for Spinach Cake Muffins. The recipe called for spinach and applesauce combined with a boxed cake mix. Don't get me wrong, I'm all for incorporating vegetables as often as possible, but there was something about the thought of spinach mixed into a sweet muffin that came across as unappealing to me. However, this mom was incredibly passionate about figuring out how to make these muffins a bit more healthy (and without the boxed cake mix). Her enthusiasm won me over and, wanting to see if there would be any value to trying a recipe like this, I started played around with it.
After a bunch of trial and error I was kinda shocked at how delicious the muffins turned out. They had just the perfect amount of sweetness and an appealing bright green color, but no intense spinach flavor. I surprisingly got really into making them and the new recipe produced a sweet little gem of a muffin that my kids absolutely loved. Chloe joined me in making a batch and got so into it I caught her eating spinach leaves directly out of the measuring cup -- who says kids don't like their greens?! I always find that when you give little ones a chance to be a part of creating something in the kitchen, it can transform food for them in a way that's just as much fun to make as it is to eat!
Thank you to the weelicious mom who inspired this recipe (you know who you are) and to everyone else, please keep the ideas coming in 2012! They energize me, spark great ideas and no matter how out there they may be can produce an awesome and delicious result.
Photo by Maren Caruso
Check out these other amazing spinach recipes for more inspiration!
Feed Me Phoebe_ Healthy Creamed Spinach
The Heritage Cook_ Fresh Spinach with Maple Vinegar Vinaigrette
Big Girls, Small Kitchen_ Za'atar Roasted Salmon with Greens
Blue Apron Blog_ Saag Paneer at Home
Weelicious: Spinach Cake Muffins
Virtually Homemade_ Creamy Spinach and Chicken Casserole
Haute Apple Pie_ Parmesan Spinach, Broccoli and Chicken Bake
Red or Green_ Spinach-Walnut Pesto on Bruschetta with Fried Egg
Napa Farmhouse 1885_ Spinach with Sausage, Peppers and Tomatoes
The Sensitive Epicure_ Spanakopita Minus the -Opita
Taste With The Eyes_ Spinach and Chickpeas in a Bengali Mustard Sauce
Domesticate Me_ Warm Spinach Salad with Bacon Vinaigrette and a Fried Egg
In Jennie's Kitchen_ Crispy Spinach Latkes
Devour: How to Make Spinach Gnocchi
Dishin & Dishes_ Pear, Walnut and Blue Cheese Salad with Arugula and Baby Spinach
FN Dish_ Eat Your Spinach Sides
Spinach Cake Muffins (Makes 24 Mini Muffins)
- 1/2 Cup Unsweetened Applesauce
- 1 Large Egg
- 2 Tsp Vanilla Extract
- 1 Cup Fresh Spinach, packed
- 1/3 Cup Sugar
- 2 Tbsp Vegetable or Canola Oil
- 1 1/2 Cups All Purpose Flour
- 1 Tsp Baking Powder
- 1/2 Tsp Baking Soda
- 1/2 Tsp Salt
1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
2. Place the first 6 ingredients in a food processor and puree.
3. Place the remaining ingredients in a separate bowl and combine.
4. Pour the spinach puree in a large mixing bowl.
5. Slowly mix the dry ingredients into the wet until combined.
6. Scoop batter into a greased mini muffin tin, filling each cup 2/3 of the way.
7. Bake for 12 minutes.