Healthy Toddler Mini Muffins packed with tons of flavor but none of the junk! Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Soy-Free, Oil-Free, and Refined Sugar-Free, these are snacks you can feel great about giving to your little one.
Before we get down the rabbit hole with this recipe, and you start rolling your eyes at me, let me just start by saying that YES, I am “that mom” and yes, I am painfully aware.
You know: that mom that is totally crazy about her child’s nutrition. The one that makes everything completely from scratch, organic whenever possible, and at 17 months has yet to let a single gram of processed sugar touch her child’s lips.
You guys, I know this is annoying. It even annoys me.
And I must also mention that I cast NO JUDGEMENT on other parents who don’t do this. In fact, I wish I was a little less crazy about it, but I‘m a type-A super protective Mama Bear who has a kid with a number of food intolerances, so, for better or for worse, this is me and feeding my kid this way is how I sleep [better] at night. I’m sure that I’m screwing up in parenting in just about every.other.area, but when it comes to nutrition? It’s my one small parenting success.
And no, it (and I) won’t be like this forever. I’m sure it will be all Twix Bars and Cheez-Its in no time at all (if he eats anything like his mama did as a tween), but for now, while I can help to adapt his tastes to fresh, natural, unprocessed foods, that’s the name of the game.
With all of that said, it’s probably not surprising to you to hear that these healthy toddler mini muffins are:
- Naturally sweetened with FRUIT ONLY
But don’t be fooled, they are DELICIOUS. Our kiddo will crush more of these healthy toddler mini muffins in a sitting than I can keep tabs on, and BEGS for them all day long.
He actually only articulates two food words, and picked up the name of these (“mommins”) before the first one was even fully down the hatch. That’s how much he loves them.
(In case you were wondering, his other food word is ‘cado for Avocado. That’s my boy!)
While they’re definitely meant for toddlers, mama and dada have been known to sneak one here or there, and we’re pretty big fans, too. I may have had to literally swat Anthony’s hand away from these a time or 12.
What do I mean by “meant for toddlers?”
Well, they’re not exactly your typical muffin texture, but they’re perfect for teething kiddos (who don’t want to chew too much – ouch!) or kids who are just getting used to more texture and “chewing”/ gumming their solids since these healthy toddler mini muffins are a little more wet and absolutely melt in the mouth. A dreaaam for us parents who are hyper-terrified of choking (*points to self*) but maybe not ideal for an adult who is looking for that bakery-style muffin texture and crumb.
The secret to success of these healthy toddler mini muffins is using a homemade pear or apple puree. A bit of extra work, but so worth it! I’m always shocked at how little flavor store bought applesauce has in comparison to homemade apple puree and homemade applesauce. Since a good portion of the sweetness in these muffins is coming from the apple or pear puree, you definitely don’t want to cut corners here!
To make my purees, I simply wash, cut, and core my apples or pears (or both!) place them in a steamer until really tender and mushy, and then give them a whirl in the food processor or blender. I leave the skins on as they mostly disappear when pureed, but hold tons of extra fiber and nutrients that are great for kiddos.
While you’re at it, make a BIG batch of puree, freeze the extra in ice cube trays, and use them to naturally sweeten things like oatmeal for your kiddo. Or, worst case, you’ll have some on hand for the next batch of these muffins!
For my next trick, I’m thinking of adding some spinach to this recipe to make them an even healthier treat for our little guy. I PROMISE to report back on how they turn out.
Mamas (and Dadas!) – what are your favorite homemade clean treats for your kiddo? I’m dying to try some other healthy finger foods!
- 1 cup very hot water
- ¾ cup old fashioned oats (purity protocol if gluten-free)
- 1 large, very ripe banana
- 1½ cups homemade pear or apple puree*
- 2 large eggs
- 1½ cups blanched almond flour**
- ¼ cup coconut flour
- 1½ tsp baking powder
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Line a mini muffin pan with mini muffin liners, and set aside.
- In a small bowl, combine very hot water and old-fashioned oats, stirring well. Allow the oatmeal to soak for 5 minutes.
- In a blender, combine the banana, homemade apple or pear puree, and eggs by blending for 5 seconds.
- Add the almond flour, coconut flour, baking powder, and cinnamon to the blender, and blend for 10 seconds. Add the soaked oatmeal, and blend again for another 5-10 seconds, or until the batter is nice and smooth.
- Allow the batter to rest for 15 minutes in the blender, so the coconut flour can absorb the moisture. Do not skip this step!
- Fill the prepared mini muffin cups almost completely to the rim, and bake for 21-23 minutes, or until set and lightly golden.
- Allow the mini muffins to cool for at least 2 minutes in the tin, then move to a wire rack and allow them to cool completely.
- Serve, and watch your toddler fall in love!
** I have not tried this with Almond Meal, which would likely result in a denser, more dry muffin.
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