I love food that makes my house smell like fall. I love crisp, cool nights where we can open up the sliding door to let some fresh air in. The smell of burning wood in the air. There’s nothing like it.
Ella got her first taste of pumpkin treats a couple of weeks ago. I made up a batch of these pancakes, then decided to make her mini muffins with some pumpkin and spices. I love making Ella’s meals.I love creating new recipes in my (tiny) kitchen. Swapping around the kitchen aid, food processor and my vitamix in limited counter space. Someday I’ll have a big kitchen with an island where Ella can pull up a stool and help me bake! I can’t wait for that!
Now, she just makes a mess below my feet…piling up her stuffed animals while I try to keep her out of the trash, Munchkin’s food and my drawers. Or from drawing on my kitchen floor with chalk. It’s quite the scene. Especially when she gets my broom and her and Munchi start chasing each other. The giggling is worth the price of admission alone.
If anyone has followed any of my previous posts about Ella’s eating you may remember me mentioning keeping her on a gluten-free diet until her digestive system matured. The information out there on wheat is very disturbing, and I am doing the best I can with the information I have to ensure I raise a healthy, happy baby. My goal has been for her to enjoy a wide variety of healthy foods (as a kid and an adult) to help her grow, keep her immune system strong, her pipes clean, and hopefully, prevent her from becoming too picky. So far so good. I know it can be subject to change, but I am doing my best to not make a big deal out of food and be a healthy, balanced role model for her. Fingers crossed she stays adventurous!
Ella is a very daring toddler who eats a varied whole foods diet. Anything from hummus to avocado pudding to salmon and grass-fed, local filet mignon to Brussels sprouts, cauliflower (all veggies!) and kale chips…she even steals lettuce from my salads! That one shocked me because I never even offered her lettuce before….but she loves it! I let her have it as a treat after she’s eaten her meal of healthy fat and protein (even though after her bath each night, like clockwork, she sticks her fingers in her jar of coconut oil and eats it like Pooh eats honey). I want to make sure she consumes all of her calorie dense stuff first to support her very fast metabolism. I try and treat all food equally though…things that us adults would look at as dessert (chocolate avo pudding), she will eat a few bites of but then wash it down with kale. I hate to say it (so knock on wood) but this child is an awesome eater. And I couldn’t be more pleased and proud!
My work schedule, (and now with yoga training/classes), has me all over the place at different times. We are usually rushing out in the morning so I can drop her to my moms and get to my early clients. I always have Ella’s meals packed for the day no matter where or what time we go out. She eats a lot of fresh foods, but also I have a lot of things in my freezer for her—Ella’s “fast food” for the road are things I make ahead of time. Muffins and mini muffins of different varieties have been a staple in my freezer since she graduated from homemade purees. They are quick to make and such a lifesaver when we are on the go with limited time!
When developing recipes for Ella I try to go for things that are packed with nutrients, full of flavor and are sugar-free–or very, very low in sugar. One of her favorites are the banana hemp muffins I created, and this recipe is a fall adaption of them!
Ella’s Gluten-Free Pumpkin Spice Muffins
yield: 30 mini muffins
The Fitness Dish
1/4 cup ground flax seeds
1/4 cup millet flour*
1/4 cup quinoa flour*
1/4 cup gluten-free oat flour*
1/4 cup plus 2 Tablespoons shelled hemp seeds
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup coconut oil (plus more for the pan)
8 ounces pumpkin puree
2 very ripe bananas, mashed
1/2 cup raisins
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 Tablespoons maple syrup, or NuNaturals stevia baking blend(to lower sugar more)
2 teaspoons date sugar
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a mini muffin tin with melted coconut oil. *To make “flour” out of millet, quinoa and/or oatmeal just grind it all up in your food processor. Add ground flax, oat flour, millet flour, quinoa flour, hemp seeds, baking soda and spices to a bowl and whisk together. In a separate bowl using an electric hand mixer or kitchen aid stand mixer cream together eggs, coconut oil, sweeteners and vanilla. Mix in pumpkin puree and mashed banana. Slowly mix in dry mixture and mix until combined. Fold in raisins. Use a cookie scooper and evenly scoop batter into greased muffin tins. Bake for 18-22 minutes at 375 degrees. In my oven it takes about 20 minutes, but times may vary.
*Once these are completely cool, I set two aside for her breakfast/snack and freeze the rest in a large freezer bag. They come out easily and I just take two and heat them for 30-40 seconds in a microwave when ready to eat! I love freezing close to when I baked them to keep them really fresh!
Tip for mom! This recipe makes either 30 mini muffins, or you can make 24 and throw the rest of the batter into two greased ramekins and microwave for about 2 minutes (or bake with the muffins). There’s your adult-sized muffin for the road!
Tomorrow I hope to get in my first HIIT workout in a while! I’ve been doing yoga 3-4 times a week and cardio 1-2 times a week. I need to get in a good old strength session too! I have avoided jumping around since my neck is iffy, but perhaps tomorrow will be the day! I wanted to post a new workout on here soon…but need to play around and maybe do some taping.
Speaking of…if I did a Q&A session on here, what kind of Q’s would you have for me? Any topic. I am thinking of doing my first vlog, and a Q&A sounds like fun! Ella and Munchkin may even chime in….
Meanwhile..aside from my daughter..this kid is my hero:
What’s Wrong with out Food Supply According to an 11 year old! Definitely a must watch….many adults can learn something from him!