Banana Oatmeal Muffins

By Michelle Nowicki, Nutritionist

These moist and flavorful muffins make a perfect on-the-go breakfast or afternoon snack. Unlike tempting, empty calorie baked goods, this month’s healthy muffin recipe is tasty and guilt-free. Yogurt replaces some of the oil in the recipe and keeps the muffins moist. Consider freezing an extra batch to have on hand for those cold winter mornings or unexpected visitors.

Ingredients

Banana Oatmeal Muffins

  • 1 1/4 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup yogurt, plain
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 1/2 cup oat flour*
  • 3/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil, melted & cooled to room temperature
  • 2 large ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten & at room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. In a bowl mix together the rolled oats, yogurt and milk. Let soak for 15 minutes.
  3. Mix oat flour*, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, baking powder and baking soda in another bowl.
  4. Add sugars, mashed bananas, egg and oil to rolled oats mixture. Mix well.
  5. Add dry ingredients to the rolled oats mixture. Mix well. Fill greased or paper lined muffin cups 2/3 full.
    Bake for approximately 20 minutes.

*Oat flour can be made using a blender. Pour 2 cups of rolled oats into the blender and blend until oats become the consistency of coarse flour. Two cups of oats should yield 1.5 cups of oat flour.

Key Ingredient Benefits

Bananas: contain a high dose of potassium, which plays an important role with one’s heart, digestion and muscular movements. This potassium-rich fruit also benefits the kidneys and bones. Bananas also contain tryptophan, which can act as a mood enhancer or mild sedative. Bananas offer one of the highest sources of naturally available vitamin B6, which helps the body to make hemoglobin, and is essential for antibody production and to maintain a healthy immune response. B6 can also be found in Juvenon’s Essential Multi Vitamin.

Rolled Oats: contain a type of fiber called beta-glucan. A diet high in this type of fiber can help maintain healthy lipids; lower cholesterol levels and reduces one’s risk for cardiovascular disease. Bet-glucan also helps to stabilize blood sugar and may support the immune system. Rolled oats contain antioxidants called avenanthramides, which play an important role in overall cardiovascular health.

Yogurt: contains lactobacillus, a probiotic demonstrated to have positive effects on the health of the digestive system as well as the immune system. Yogurt is rich in calcium, phosphorus, riboflavin-vitamin B2 and iodine and contains vitamin B12 (found in Juvenon’s Youthful Energy), pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), zinc, potassium, protein and molybdenum.

Cinnamon: is a powerful antioxidant and has many additional health benefits. Cinnamon helps to regulate blood sugar levels by slowing the rate at which the stomach empties after eating. In addition, it may improve insulin sensitivity, which has positive implications for those with type 2 diabetes. Furthermore, cinnamon has anti-microbial properties, which may help deter the growth of bacteria and fungi.

Nutmeg: has good amount of Vitamin A, C and choline. It can help neutralize toxins, improve cholesterol levels, and may inhibit cancer, improve rheumatism, and soothe the stomach.

(Sea) salt: contains numerous important elements, including magnesium, for improved metabolism and blood pressure. We evolved from the sea and require the variety of elements it contains as they function as co-factors to help run the body’s machinery.

Eggs: have essential amino acids and provide several vitamins and minerals, including retinol (vitamin A), riboflavin (vitamin B2), folic acid (vitamin B9), vitamin B6, vitamin B12, choline, iron, calcium, phosphorus and potassium. They are also a single-food source of protein. The egg is one of the few foods to naturally contain vitamin D. All of the egg’s vitamin A, D, and E are in the egg yolk. A large yolk contains more than two-thirds of the recommended daily intake of 300 mg of cholesterol. It also contains choline, which is an important nutrient for development of the brain, and is said to be important for pregnant and nursing women to ensure healthy fetal brain development.

Coconut oil: is different from other saturated fats as the majority of the fatty acids contain short-length carbon chains commonly referred to as medium chain triglycerides (MCT). Research extending back to the early part of the 20th century found the MCTs to protect the nervous system as well as preventing seizures, and today are sometimes prescribed for drug-resistant epilepsy. It has also been suggested that coconut oil has anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties, and can suppress appetite and improve gastrointestinal issues, such as colitis.

A note about brown sugar. We think it is advisable to limit sugar intake (See Juvenon Health Journal Volume 10, Number 4, “Sugar: should it have a warning label”). This recipe requires less sugar due to the natural sweetness of the bananas.

 

Michelle Nowicki has a Bachelor of Science in Food and Nutrition, completed a dietetic internship at Yale-New Haven Hospital, and has a graduate degree from Yale University.