Prevention Magazine furnished this recipe for a healthy, Christmasy muffin that I've already baked and previewed and stored in my deepfreeze for a Christmas breakfast menu that also will include turkey sausage balls and a potato casserole. As I auditioned Cranberry-Almond Muffins, I spread on some of my homemade pumpkin-apple butter. The end result seemed as though it was a gift from Santa himself.
Whole-wheat flour combines with all-purpose flour as a base for the muffin batter. A heaping addition of whole cranberries (remember their vitamin C and fiber benefits) plus sliced almonds make this a seriously healthy treat. That little touch of red as the cranberries peek through the muffin tops helps decorate your Christmas table.
You even could consider subbing one of these muffins for cookies when you leave out for Santa a little treat! Goodness knows he looks as though he himself could use a little dose of healthy eating.
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
3/4 cup plus 2 teaspoons sugar (or sugar substitute)
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt (or salt substitute)
1 large egg (or 1/4 cup egg substitute)
1/2 cup fat-free milk
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 teaspoon almond extract
1 2/3 cup whole cranberries
1 tablespoon butter, cut into 12 cubes
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup sliced almonds
Heat oven to 375 degrees. Mix first five ingredients. Whisk together next 4 ingredients. Fold this mixture into flour mixture. Stir in cranberries. Put batter in muffin pan lined with 12 baking cups (or muffin pan that has been generously greased so muffins will remove easily). Top with butter. Whisk together 2 teaspoons sugar, cinnamon, and almonds; sprinkle on the top of each unbaked muffin. Bake until muffins test done, about 22 minutes. Yields 12.