Friday, January 28, 2011

Sweet sweet Friday: Vegan Muffins

One of the cool things about my new(ish) job is that I get to ring up various cafes and restaurants on behalf of readers and request recipes. It might sound easy but it actually requires all the skills I've built up over a decade to convince some of these chefs to part with their recipes. Some of them are such hard work that sometimes I think it would be easier to go back to doing death knocks or interviewing media-trained celebs.

Anyway, this recipe is from Baobab, a cafe just down the road from our house. It's a very laidback spot and the couple who run it are amazing. One day we're going to manage to go there on a Friday night and have tapas, but in the meantime the Small Girl and I occasionally treat ourselves and stop there for one of these muffins when we're out running errands or going to the library.

Easy Vegan Muffins From Scratch

Baobab's Vegan Muffins
You don't have to be a vegan to enjoy (or make) these hearty muffins. In fact, you might be just someone who wants to make some muffins for Saturday morning breakfast and realises they don't have any eggs. Rachel, the chef at Baobab, makes these in six muffin tins but I find them too hard to get out of the tin that way and divide the mixture into eight. I also use spelt flour and add some orange zest. They're pretty irresistable straight out of the oven ("Mummy, muffins!") but they also freeze well for weekday lunches.

1 1/2 cups plain flour (or spelt flour)
1 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup coconut
2tsp baking powder
1tsp baking soda
1tsp cinnamon
pinch of salt
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 1/4 cups soy milk (or milk of your choice)
1tsp vanilla
grated zest of an orange
1 ripe banana, mashed
Fruit - about a cup of sliced stonefruit, berries, or whatever else takes your fancy

Preheat oven to 175C and grease and flour eight medium-sized muffin tins.
Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda and cinnamon into a large bowl. Add rolled oats, brown sugar and  coconut and stir well. In a separate bowl, mix the mashed banana, oil, milk, vanilla and orange zest. Add the wet mixture to the dry ingredients and fold together gently until just combined. Spoon the mixture into the muffin cups until they are about half-full. Place some of your chosen fruit on top, then top with the rest of the muffin batter (the cups will be very full). Garnish the top of the muffins with the remaining fruit. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until a skewer comes out clean when you plunge it into a muffin. Cool for five minutes, then gently turn out of the tin and leave to cool on a rack.

Do you have an end of the week baking treat? Add it in here to spread the sweetness of Fridays...
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  1. Mmm. Making me hungry. Must go have breakfast. How wonderful .. sewing circle. Might be a new blog there? How did it go?

  2. These look so good. What an interesting job you have!

  3. mmmm... these look really good... love a breakfast muffin... I would even go so far to say these seem actually healthy?!?

  4. Wow, these look delicious....will definitely try them out....
    ....Not sure what death knocks are though.....I'm intrigued?!

  5. Thank you Ann, it IS fun!

    Joan, Ladies' Sewing Circle was brilliant (thanks to clever friends who have no end of useful advice AND an overlocker)...

    Dom, yes, I think these ARE probably healthy (ish) - or at least more nutritious than toast 'n butter...

    And Debby, death knocks are when you have to be horrible preying mantis journalist and knock on door of grieving family etc. The sort of thing that people hate you for. See why I turned to food writing?!

  6. vegan recipes are so guilt-free for me. Not just for its nutritional contents, but for the fact that there is no animal products used for these yummy treats. Nevertheless, I still can't live without meat, milk and eggs.

  7. I'll definitely try making these. I might have to pretend they're not healthy, though - I'm just not used to healthy food these days.

  8. this is a must try wld substitute soy milk with regular milk....shld i use fullfat?

  9. Phil, you can always throw in some dark chocolate if it makes you feel better (come to think of it, I might do that next time, with some berries).

    Turmericnspice, I think fullfat milk would be best (and it's what I use), but you could always give it a go with lower fat varieties. Let me know how you get on!

  10. Now these muffins look a real different and healthy treat to the weekend breakfast table. So fruity. I totally agree with some of you - let's not mention the word healthy to the family, though ;-)

  11. Ok, what's really getting me about those muffins is the gorgeous fresh summer fruit on top! It's a cold January day here in the UK and those nectarines are making me think of August. Sigh!

    Michele (

  12. Mmm....looks delicious. I wish I have one now with my cup of coffee! Thanks very much for sharing. MaryMoh at

  13. Yumm-Absolutely love those muffins. Would love to have some with my morning coffee!

  14. The fruit on the top is what makes me want to have one right now! They also sound nice and healthy for a muffin and may just find their way into our freezer ready for school lunches......

  15. These sound really good, with spelt flour and oats and the fruit on top. No wonder the little one wants one straight out of the oven. A death knock - not heard of it before but your explanation makes me certain that you have made the right career choice.

  16. They look marvellous! And one can easily justify having an extra one as they are so healthy ;-)

  17. yum these sound and look gorgeous!
    what a small world the owners from Baobab came and had coffee at our Kayak/coffee shop this summer!they were lovely:)
    and gave us their card to find them in Wellington I am most defiently going to try my best to get there!!!
    have just found your blog and it is scrumptious Lucy
    have a great day


Hello - thanks for stopping by. If this was real life I'd make you a cup of tea and open the biscuit tin, but in lieu of those things, let's have a chat anyway...