Banana Carrot Muffins
Banana Carrot Muffins contain many healthy ingredients, such as bananas, carrots, whole wheat flour and chopped walnuts. They make a great light breakfast or a tasty snack. Banana Carrot Muffins is one of the recipes I really liked in Eater’s Choice.
A Little Background (skip if you want to get straight to the recipe)
This section is on nutrition information from the American Heart Association website.
Back in 1987, a book called Eater’s Choice by Dr. Ron Goor and Nancy Goor was very popular as it addressed how to lower cholesterol by diet. Their focus was on saturated fat, which is still appropriate today. Trans fat was not a term used in the 80’s – trans fat is another name for partially hydrogenated oils.
Trans fats (or trans fatty acids) are created in an industrial process that adds hydrogen to liquid vegetable oils to make them more solid. Trans fat are found in many fried and baked goods. Check out the Nutrition Facts label on food to see if trans fat or partially hydrogenated oil is listed.
Trans fats raise your LDL (bad) cholesterol levels and lower your HDL (good) cholesterol levels – changes associated with an increased risk of heart disease. Many fast food chains and restaurant chains no longer use trans fat to fry or deep-fry food.
Let’s look briefly at the recommendations of the American Heart Association. The American Heart Association recommends that adults who would benefit from lowering LDL cholesterol reduce their intake of trans fat and limit their consumption of saturated fat to 5 to 6% of total calories. Here are some ways to achieve that:
- Eat a dietary pattern that emphasizes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy products, poultry, fish and nuts. Also limit red meat and sugary foods and beverages.
- Use naturally occurring, unhydrogenated vegetable oils such as canola, safflower, sunflower or olive oil most often.
- Look for processed foods made with unhydrogenated oil rather than partially hydrogenated or hydrogenated vegetable oils or saturated fat.
- Use soft margarine as a substitute for butter, and choose soft margarines (liquid or tub varieties) over harder stick forms. Look for ?0 g trans fat? on the Nutrition Facts label.
- Doughnuts, cookies, crackers, muffins, pies and cakes are examples of foods that are high in trans fat. Don’t eat them often.
- Limit commercially fried foods and baked goods made with shortening or partially hydrogenated vegetable oils. Not only are these foods very high in fat, but that fat is also likely to be trans fat.
- Limit fried fast food. Commercial shortening and deep-frying fats continue to be made by hydrogenation and contain saturated fat and trans fat.
The first step to making Banana Carrot Muffins is to preheat the oven to 350°F. and grease the muffin tins or use pan spray, your choice.
The next step is to grate the carrots – a food processor does this most efficiently if you have one.
Place the bananas in a small bowl and mash them with a fork. Set aside.
In a mixing bowl, cream the soft margarine and brown sugar until fluffy. Add an egg and beat well. Stir in the mashed bananas. In a small bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda. Add flour mixture to banana mixture. Do not overmix. When mixing muffins, just mix the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients until the dry ingredients are just moistened.
Add grated carrots, vanilla and nuts and combine carefully.
Fill muffin tins with batter, which will be thicker than some batters, and bake for 20-25 minutes or until a cake tester or toothpick inserted in a muffin comes out clean.
“Before” baking“After” baking
The Recipe – Printable Version
- 3 medium carrots
- 2 medium bananas
- 1/4 cup soft margarine
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- 2 cups whole wheat flour
- 2 teaspoons double-acting baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease or use pan spray on a 12-cup muffin pan.
- Grate carrots and set aside. (A food processor does this well.)
- Mash bananas with a fork and set aside.
- In a mixing bowl, cream the soft margarine and brown sugar until fluffy.
- Add egg and beat well.
- Stir in the mashed bananas.
- In a small bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda.
- Add flour mixture to banana mixture. Do not overmix.
- Add grated carrots, vanilla and nuts and combine carefully.
- Fill muffin tin and bake for 20-25 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean.
- As an alternative, try substituting 1 cup oat bran + 1/2 cup wheat germ + 1/2 cup whole wheat flour for the 2 cups of whole wheat flour. Use only 2 tablespoons of soft margarine and 1/4 cup brown sugar.
I really didn’t mean to get into a lot of nutrition information in today’s post but it just happened! As a disclaimer, I was a registered dietitian for many years but I’m now retired. The information under “A Little Background” was directly from the American Heart Association website. It’s beyond the scope of this website to provide individualized nutrition information but if you have elevated cholesterol levels I hope this may have been helpful. As always, check with your doctor and/or registered dietitian for more information.
These muffins are delicious and delightful! Make some soon for those you love!
Remember to Savor the Flavor!
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