I’m all about experimenting with new, healthy ingredients I find at the grocery store—sometimes the recipes end up being a flop (I have honest taste testers who don’t hold back how they really feel), but other times I’m pleasantly surprised at how tasty they turn out. When I spotted banana flour at Whole Foods recently, I purchased a bag and made this twist on a seasonal favorite: cranberry-orange muffins.
Why banana flour? Despite the name, the flour doesn’t taste very banana-y. That’s because it’s made from unripe bananas before most of the starch has converted into sugar. Unripe bananas contain a type of starch called resistant starch, which not only helps us feel full after eating, but promotes beneficial bacteria in the gut. It’s ideal for people avoiding gluten or grains. It also boasts iron and potassium (just 2 TBSP has 20% of the daily value of iron and 90 mg of potassium). It does have not so much a banana quality but a certain flavor profile that is not for everyone. If you’re used to healthy eating and enjoy some unusual flavors, you might enjoy adding another grain-free flour to your arsenal. I combined it with oat flour; on its own I think it might be too overpowering. It makes for a denser, darker muffin that is still chewy and flaky. It’s a nice alternative to traditional flavors, and worth giving a try!
Cranberry-Orange Muffins with Oat and Banana Flours (serves 10-12)
- 1/2 cup banana flour
- 3/4 cup oat flour
- 3/4 TBSP baking powder
- Less than ½ cup sugar or alternative like maple syrup, coconut sugar, etc.
- ¼ cup butter, melted
- 1 TBSP grated orange peel
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- ½ cup + 4 TBSP non-dairy milk
- 1/2 cup to 3/4 cup (based on preference) fresh cranberries, chopped
- In a bowl mix flour, baking powder and sugar.
- In another bowl beat together butter, orange peel, egg, and milk.
- Add liquid mixture to flour mixture.
- Fold in chopped cranberries.
- Put into muffin tins sprayed with oil or lined with paper.
- Bake at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes.
Adapted from Beyond the Chicken Coop
Photo by Matthew Weiss of Soul and Structure