Quinoa and Walnut Muffins

Quinoa and Walnut Muffins

A few weeks ago I had eye surgery to remove a 1/2 second (if that) not-so-smart act that I did back in college. I got a paper cut in my eye…Yes! In my eye, while working as a Graphic Design Co-Op at a pharmaceutical company. I was cutting paper over my head — one paper had the template, the other was blank and I needed two templates cut out. Seemed logical, use the over head light, what could happen? Aren’t those usually the famous last words? Well, during the course of the next 15 years, scar tissue formed and started to change my vision. So, I decided to have it removed in hopes that my eye may correct itself a bit, plus it was a real pain during allergy season.

I’ve been dreading this day forever! Someone is going to cut my eyeball…. ummmm, no thanks!  Of course, I was terrified, but it needed to be done. The day of the surgery came and of course, they were running behind. By the time it was “my turn,” I had sat for so long — I just wanted to get over with and go home and eat. It was going on 14 hours since my last food or drink, I was getting a hungry. Everyone was super nice and the surgery was so easy. I honestly think I fell asleep (the heavy sedation helped a lot with that), but still it felt like 10 minutes.

It’s healing up great and its actually healing faster than they expected. Yay! I’m only about 60% healed and life is still a little blurry. They computer definitely is hard, especially after a day of work.

This is why I was absent recently. So, I hope you understand and stick with me. I have lots of great recipes ahead. I’ve had some time to play in the kitchen.

These Quinoa and Walnut Muffins are so easy to make and delicious. They make a great breakfast muffin or just a snack. The recipe itself without the walnuts is almost your basic muffin base and you can add anything you want to make them yours. Nuts, dried fruit, chocolate chips — anything really. I also added cake enhancer to increase moisture life to the muffins (this is optional, but I recommend freezing them if you won’t eat within a few days). They were moist for over a week in a ziplock, which I think is great for a gluten-free muffin.

The Quinoa and Walnut Muffins are wonderful a bit warm with a smear of butter (apple, almond, regular and even peanut) or jelly!

Quinoa and Walnut Muffins

Quinoa and Walnut Muffins
  • 2 cups cooked quinoa
  • 1 cup all-purpose gluten-free flour
  • 1½ teaspoon xanthan gum
  • 2 tablespoons of cake enhancer (optional)
  • ¾ cup packed brown sugar
  • 1½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup apple sauce
  • ¾ cup milk
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup walnuts, pieces (optional*)
  1. Preheat oven to 350° and grease a standard 12-cup muffin pan.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, xanthan gum, brown sugar, baking powder, salt, cake enhancer, walnuts and quinoa.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together apple sauce, milk, egg and vanilla.
  4. Add milk mixture to flour mixture and stir just until combined.
  5. Divide batter among the prepared muffin cups.
  6. Bake until toothpick inserted into center of muffin comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes.
  7. Cool muffins in pan for 5 minutes, transfer to wire rack to cook completely.
* Try using your favorite nuts or dried fruit instead of or in addition to the walnuts. Raisins, dried cranberries, blueberries, dried apricots, chopped pecan or almond or even chocolate chips to name a few.

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