Pumpkin and Fruit Protein Cookies

It’s always great looking for fresh, new snacks that get me happy to be cooking and ready for the week ahead. Bliss balls, veggie muffins, any little thing I can munch on mid-morning to get me through the work day, that not just satisfies my hunger, but also my desire for yummy, interesting food. I’m a creature of habit, but don’t like eating the same thing over and over again.

Which brings me to these cookies whose deliciousness belies the nutritional punch that they pack in every bite. Crunchy, sweet, seedy, oaty, and just salty, they’re a fantastic work snack for only 90 calories apiece (for a yield of 30 cookies). Granted, they’re not very large, but one of these and a piece of fruit or veg, and you’ll be good to go for ages. You could also make them 1.5 times larger and cook them a few minutes longer, because 135 calories for a substantial snack is nothing too terrible, either. I just like them little and cute, I guess! I used Kodiak power cake mix, and highly recommend it for both flavour and added protein, but wholemeal flour works well, too.

Ingredients

225g raw pumpkin, chopped roughly

1tbs butter, softened

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 egg

1 tsp vanilla extract

3/4 cup sultanas

1/3 cup pepitas

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1 cup rolled oats

2 cup Kodiak Power Cake mix or wholemeal flour

Method

  1. Steam pumpkin for 10 minutes, until very tender. Drain, and mash with butter until very smooth. Allow to cool.
  2. Preheat oven to 180C and line baking trays with non stick baking paper.
  3. Add sugar, butter, egg and vanilla to pumpkin mixture and beat until smooth.
  4. Stir in pepitas and sultanas.
  5. Combine Kodiak with rolled oats and fold into mixture to combine.
  6. Allow to rest for 30 minutes in the fridge.
  7. Roll mixture into 30 balls and bake for 12 minutes or until firm.

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Easiest Egg Muffins

Looking for something quick and easy to make? Something that could be a meal or a snack, while clocking in at less that 100 calories (93 to be exact)? Something that uses up the sad veggies dwelling in the bottom of your fridge, can be eaten on the run with one hand, are low carb and high protein, and are bursting with veggie goodness?

Well, look no further.


Looking for something quick and easy to make? Something that could be a meal or a snack, while clocking in at less that 100 calories (93 to be exact)? Something that uses up the sad veggies dwelling in the bottom of your fridge, can be eaten on the run with one hand, are low carb and high protein, and are bursting with veggie goodness?

Well, look no further.

I mean, you could; the internet is full of recipes for egg bites/muffins/mini quiches. But if you’re here… well, it makes perfect sense to look no further. These muffins tick all the boxes.

The only caveat to these is that you MUST use paper cases. Unless losing half your muffin to the bottom of the muffin pan is your thing, of course. Trust me. They stick. But apart from that, they’re so simple, and not at all labour intensive – even making them after a long day of work isn’t as harrowing as it sounds.

I like to make 6 at a time – they’re not going to keep for much more than that. No one wants slimy eggs as they’re running out the door!

Ingredients

6 eggs

125g cherry tomatoes, cut into eights

100g mushrooms, sliced

1 onion, diced

1/2 cup broccoli, finely chopped

Salt and Pepper, to taste

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 180C, and line a muffin pan with 6 paper cases.
  2. Over medium heat, cook onion, mushrooms and broccoli until onion is translucent – about 5 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, crack eggs into a large bowl, and beat well. Stir in cherry tomatoes.
  4. Add cooked vegetables, and mix to combine. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Evenly distribute mixture into the paper cases. Bake for 20 minutes, or until golden and firm.

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Amelie’s Banana Choc Chunk Cupcakes

As with most kids who like to cook, Miss 7 loves baking, and that’s where her culinary career started – helping me make cakes and muffins. It’s simple and easy, and has a fabulous reward at the end – of course kids love it! However, Miss 7 isn’t really much of a cake person (unless we’re talking chocolate cake!), but she is an attention-loving person. She’ll shamelessly admit that she loves cooking, not for the end result, but for the credit. Chefs and their egos start young, it seems!

This recipe is pretty foolproof – remove the chocolate and the bananas, and you’re left with a moist and tasty basic cupcake recipe that you can pretty much add anything too. I can’t even remember where I found that particular recipe, but for the past 15 years or so, I’ve stayed pretty loyal to the flour, butter, egg, milk and sugar ratios, because it’s never failed, and everybody seems to love it. Then, a world of toppings and additions await, and the sky’s the limit.

I have calculated that the base cake recipe has 200 calories, so with the addition of the banana and chocolate, each muffin is about 240. I hesitate to become too technical with these because after all these years, I barely measure anything anymore. I tend to just estimate the calories of whatever I add to the base and call it a day. I mean, I’m not eating them when I’m being particularly fastidious about my food intake, anyway.

Makes 18 smallish cupcakes.

Ingredients

2 large bananas, peeled and broken into large pieces

125g butter

3/4 cup raw sugar

1tsp vanilla extract

2 eggs

2 cups self raising flour

1/4 cup mik

1/2 cup chocolate buttons (we used Nestle melts), chopped coarsely. There’s no reason you can’t use choc chips, but the large, uneven chunks have a charm of their own.

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 180C and line 2 muffin pans with 18 patty cases.
  2. Beat bananas until they form a soft mush – I use my stand mixer for this. Add butter, sugar and vanilla, and beat until well combined.  The mixture will be very wet.
  3. Add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition until well combined.
  4. Sift flour into mixture and stir gently to combine.
  5. Gently fold in choc chunks.
  6. Spoon mixture into prepared pans and bake for 20 minutes, or until an insterted skewer comes out clean.

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