Banana chocolate chip muffins with caramel bits
An explosion of caramely, chocolatey, banana goodness baked in a light, sweet muffin.
A wise individual once noted that the difference between a cupcake and a muffin is that one is frosted, and one is not. If the differential is truly that simple, then full permission is given to muffins to be as decadent and delicious as their frosted counterparts – minus the buttercream, of course.
The fact is that most people view muffins as a somewhat healthier snack. It’s perfectly acceptable to have a muffin for breakfast – but a cupcake? That’s pushing it. This muffin recipe brings you the best of both worlds – it’s got breakfast ingredients (applesauce, bananas, whole grains) baked together with some treats – caramel and chocolate – for an absolutely winning combination you can enjoy for breakfast or any time of day.
- 1/2 cup oil or applesauce
- 2 eggs
- 2 large bananas
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 1/2 cup flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 cup chocolate chips
- 1 cup caramel bits
Preheat oven to 350° F (180° C). Line two muffin pans with liners and set aside.
In a large bowl, peel and mash bananas. Sprinkle with baking soda.
Add applesauce or oil, eggs, orange juice and vanilla. Whisk until smooth. (If you’re out of O.J., milk, soymilk or any nut-milk will work fine.)
Add flour and sugar and stir with gentle strokes until barely blended. (Overbeating muffin batter results in a rubbery muffin.)
Add chocolate chips and caramel bits and stir with several more gentle strokes.
Use an ice cream scoop to fill muffin liners about 2/3 full.
Bake for 15 minutes or until tops spring back when lightly pressed.
If using applesauce instead of oil to cut down on fat content, use parchment paper liners to prevent sticking or spray paper liners with non-stick coating. Use white whole wheat flour for a higher fiber, more nutritious muffin.
If you can’t find caramel bits, use a handful of square caramels chopped into small pieces. These muffins are best enjoyed warm when the caramel is soft and gooey.