Let me tell you about the week I had last week. It started off with a double ear infection for my little one. She’s a fussy baby at the best of times, so you can imagine how this made her so much more fun to be around. Then my school age son brought home a case of head lice. I spent two days washing practically everything we own, vaccuuming all carpets and upholstered furniture, and combing through everyone’s hair to make sure it hadn’t spread. In the midst of all this excitement, my son and my husband both came down with the stomach flu, and were throwing up and, well, you know. It was pretty much insanity round these parts for a few days.
So it’s really not all that surprising that I left a rather important ingredient out of this recipe. I was exhausted by Sunday morning, given the circumstances, so I am not certain what possessed me to make these muffins at that exact moment. Perhaps if I had given time for the caffeine to hit my brain or gone for a brisk walk, I wouldn’t have been so fuzzy. But I decided to make them then and there, and, being the good baker that I am, I even got out all of my ingredients before hand. I should have known that I was in no shape to be making muffins, I should have quit while I was ahead. Even as I was throwing them together, I kept forgetting things I’d been meaning to add, so I knew I wasn’t at the top of my game. But I kept forging ahead, and it wasn’t until the batter was divvied up into the cups and the whole lot were in the oven that it hit me. I glanced up and saw the ingredient sitting on the counter in front of me, and realized I’d never added it. Sweetener…I made the damn muffins without any sort of sweetener!
It was too late to remedy the situation, so I simply had to hope and pray that they came out all right anyway. I’d dreamed up these muffins while on a run, thinking about my nutrition and how it can help or hinder me when I’m exercising. I struggle with this a bit. Depending on the length and intensity of the run I am doing, I need to eat something that provides energy to help carry me through. I’ve discovered that I need to eat something about 15 minutes or so before heading out, something with a good balance of short energy (easily digestible carbs) and long energy (protein, fat and complex carbs). It’s a difficult balance to strike for a diabetic, because those easy carbs are what we usually try to avoid. But as I’ve always found the first few miles of a run the toughest, I need a bit of those easy carbs to provide me with some energy.
The Results: Thank heavens the vanilla protein powder came through for me. These could stand to be a bit sweeter, definitely, but they are quite tasty as is. Even my kids liked them, so there’s your proof. I would recommend these to anyone, and you could adjust the sweetener to your taste, using sugar or alternative sweeteners or whatever suits your fancy. I don’t like my muffins overly sweet. I found them very filling and satisfying, and they kept me full for longer than sweet, carb-laden muffins do. And they are fantastic when you toss them in the microwave for 15 seconds to make the chocolate chips all melty.
Double Chocolate Power Muffins (Low Carb and Gluten Free)
- 1 & 3/4 cup almond flour (almond meal would work just fine here)
- 2/3 cup whey protein powder (vanilla or chocolate)
- 1/3 cup cocoa powder
- 1/4 cup flax seed or chia seed meal
- 2 tsp instant coffee granules
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 1/2 cup granulated Swerve Sweetener
- 3 eggs, room temperature
- 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup Sugar-Free Chocolate Chips
- Preheat oven to 325F and line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together almond meal, protein powder, cocoa powder, flax or chia meal, coffee, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
- In a large bowl, beat butter with sweetener until smooth. Beat in eggs and vanilla extract.
- Add half of almond flour mixture and beat until combined, then add almond milk. Add remaining almond flour mixture and beat until fully combined. Stir in the chocolate chips.
- Divide batter between prepared muffin cups and bake for 18 to 24 minutes, until tops are set and a tester inserted in the middle comes out clean. Cool in pan for 5 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Serves 12. Each muffin has 10 g of carbs and 5 g of fiber. Total NET CARBS = 5 g.
254 Calories; 21g Fat (70.2% calories from fat); 11g Protein; 10g Carbohydrate; 5g Dietary Fiber; 85mg Cholesterol; 290mg Sodium.