8/27/15

Cream Cheese Filled Pumpkin Muffins - Healthy and Almost like a Cream Filled Pumpkin Cupcake!


These muffins are almost like a pumpkin cupcake... only ultra-healthy and NO ONE WILL KNOW IT!
No sugar.
No flour.
Flax seed.
Real pumpkin.

Tastes like a sweet pumpkin cupcake full of fat, sugar, flour and chemicals... but so healthy you don't have to feel guilty at all.  And yes, you can serve these to kids and guests and no will guess they are eating something that is actually good for them with real pumpkin and nutrient packed flax.

Although it looks like regular frosted 'cupcake' in the photo above, look what's hiding inside?  A magic filling surprise that kids will love.








Pumpkin Muffins

2 c almond flour
1/4 c flax meal
3/4 c unflavored or vanilla whey protein powder
3/4 t baking powder
1/2 t baking soda
1/2 t salt
2 t pumpkin pie spice I usually just use a mix of about 1 1/2 t cinnamon, 1/4 ginger and 1/8 nutmeg
3/4 c blend of favorite sweeteners; use a white granular and a brown sugar version for best taste but you don't have to*
3/4 c pure pumpkin puree  (not pumpkin pie filling)
1/2 stick real butter, melted
3 eggs
2 t vanilla
1/4 c half and half or cream

In a bowl, mix the dry ingredients;  almond flour, flax, protein powder, baking powder, soda, salt, spice and sweeteners.    In another bowl mix the pumpkin, butter, eggs and vanilla.   Add the pumpkin mixture to the dry mixture and stir with a wooden spoon while adding the cream or half and half.  Add a little bit more cream if you have to but remember your batter should be thicker than a cake mix yet still able to be scooped or poured into muffin tins.    Pour batter into greased or lined cupcake tins filled  3/4 full.  Bake at 325 for approximately 25 minutes.   This will make roughly 14-15 muffins and depending on the brands of ingredients used, will be 4-7 carbs per muffin. 

*I used to love Ideal brand but they discontinued it. Instead, I now buy Brown Sweetener by Just Like Sugar


Use a favorite sugar free cream cheese based frosting and place into a frosting bag with almost any icing/frosting decorating tip that has a fairly good opening - any round tip opening, a #230 or even a star tip will work just fine.  You don't have to use any special apple corer or anything to 'remove' any of the muffin or a cupcake.  Simply insert the tip, squeeze gently and stop when the top of the baked good starts to peak.  Pull out.  That's it!  Now the magic is inside the muffin!  You can use the extra frosting/filling to frost the top, add a simple swirl or leave them plain.  These freeze great too!

Basic Cream Cheese Frosting

4 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/4 c butter, softened
1 1/2 t. vanilla
1 c - 2 cups sugar free sweetener of your choice
Just start blending and adjust amounts of sweeteners and cream cheese to your personal taste preference and how sweet you like it.  I start with just 1 cup sweetener and adjust as I don't like my frostings overly sweet.  If it's too  thick, just drizzle the tiniest bit of half and half - a little goes a long way!







You might also be interested in the products used;
Bob's Red Mill Organic  Flaxseed Meal
NOW Foods Almond Flour, 10 oz

100% Pure Erythritol  Granules
Brown Sweetener: 16 oz by Just Like Sugar

Nature's Best Isopure Unflavored (Zero Carb)

Brown Sweetener by Just Like Sugar
Wilton Disposable 16-Inch Decorating Bags, 12 Pack
Wilton 12-Piece Cupcake Decorating Set


   
 









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8/25/15

11 Autumn Recipes Featuring Pumpkin!



This morning was the very first morning when there was the slightest, tiniest bit of chill in the morning air.  I loved it!  Totally got me in the mood to crack open a kitchen window and bake... but what to bake!?  In the Fall I always start to crave pumpkin based goodies, so while searching my site for ideas, I decided to make a post of it.

If you need pumpkin pie spice and you don't have it in the pantry, you might already have the spices to make it yourself;

Pumpkin Pie Spice

1 t cinnamon
1/8 t nutmeg
1/8 t allspice
1/4 t ginger


Eleven Autumn Recipes Featuring Pumpkin

Pumpkin Griddle Cakes

Pumpkin Gingersnap Cheesecake

Double Layer Pumpkin Pie

Pumpkin Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting

Pumpkin Bars

Pumpkin Dessert (Made with a Dry Cake Mix!) 

Pumpkin Pie made with Apple Butter

Pumpkin Spice Cookies with Penuche Frosting 

Low Carb, Sugar Free Pumpkin Bars

3 Layer Pumpkin Bars

Pumpkin Muffins with Flaxseed

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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8/24/15

The "Little Monster" First Birthday Cake and Party





Todays post is a little more personal than I usually take this site.  It's a birthday party my oldest daughter planned for her son's first birthday; a Little Monster theme.  She did a fabulous job and everyone had the greatest time - and the cakes were so cute and delicious!

She isn't a cake maker or decorator but these Little Monster cakes were so easy and fun to make - anyone can do it.  She was decorating these at midnight the night before the party - so even sleepy, and using store bought frosting in a can works perfectly for these cute little cakes. 

She didn't use any directions, she just looked at a couple pictures and 'winged' it.  I helped her make the eyeballs out of fondant and rice krispy bars while she worked on the monster 'hair'.

There are some items you need - she ordered everything off the internet from various sites.

For the cakes she used store bought cake mixes; baked per directions in various sized pans & froze a day before decorating
For the frosting she used store bought frosting in a tub, no special recipe

  • For the eye balls you will need;
  • Rice Krispy bars to form the eye balls (You could make cake balls if you wish, instead)
  • Lollipop or cake pop sticks
  • Fondant (white, blue, green and either use black fondant or black gel icing for the pupil)

For the monster 'furry hair' look you need; 
You can buy the fondant in whatever colors your theme is.  She was doing the eyes in bright blue and neon bright green so she chose these;
 
Rolled Fondant Icing Bright Green and Rolled Fondant Icing Blue

We used a plain white fondant as the base and to finish them off we opted to use a gel icing for the pupils;  Wilton Black Gel Tube






The cakes were baked in various sized pans.  The large monster is simply a couple 8" rounds stacked with icing between.
The small monster cake for the birthday boy was one round with two littles.  You could also freeze and stack 2 more rounds and after they are frozen, cut out the shape of the tiny little monster from, rounding the top off.
After baking, cool completely.  Stack and freeze the cakes for easy decorating later - or if you are short on time, refrigerate to cool.
Using the icing tip #233, using frosting to make the furry hair of the monster.  Start at the bottom, around the cake and work your way up, finishing at the top.
Refrigerate while you make the eyeballs.
To form the eye balls we used rice krispy bars, formed into walnut sized balls.
Cover the eyeballs in rolled out white fondant.
Use the blue and green fondant to create and shape eye lids and the iris part of the eyes.
Push them onto a sturdy, thick cake pop or lolly pop stick - the thicker ones, not a tiny, skinny stick.  You would also use chop sticks.
We refrigerated everything at this point and about an hour before the party, used black gel icing to make the pupils.  You could also use black fondant and form a little round pupil.  Attach the fondant to each other with a bit of water, beaten egg white or a bit of icing.
The mini monster cake was made similar, using a regular tip to finish the bottom edge, and store bought little tiny candy balls pressed on wet icing to hold.

Here is the little guy getting ready to dig into his own little Monster cake.







Random "Monster" themed items available through Amazon you might also be interested in;

Cake Boss Decorating Tools 10-Piece Flower Decorating Icing Tip Set
Wilton Decorating Tip: #233 Multi-Opening
Satin Ice Vanilla Fondant Bright Green

Inktastic Baby Boys' 1st Birthday Monster Baby Bib One Size Black/White
Personalized Little Monsters Birthday Banner - Bir
Ginger Ray Monster Kids Party Boxes X 5 - Monster Madness
Fun Monster Head Suckers (1 dz)
Silly Monster Cupcake Picks and Baking Cups - 100 pc
Monsters Peel & Stick Wall Decals
Set of 3 INFLATABLE FUNNY MONSTERS




 
   
   






 







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