Gluten Free Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

Since we are going away this weekend and my son is still dairy free, I thought I would load up on some good snacks to make sure he has enough to eat.  I came through with an even better gluten free muffin today than the ones I have made in the past, and this one is dairy free too!  He ate 2 this afternoon for snack, and asked for a 3rd  (I said no!),  so they are definitely kid approved.

You might notice that they have similar ingredients to my pancakes, but hey, we got a lot of overripe bananas hanging around here, and I’m just loving coconut oil and chia seeds lately.  This is a great recipe to have the kids help with, there is lots of measuring and stirring, and you really can’t mess it up.  My son helped me make them and even ate plain chia seeds and loved them!!

Hope everyone has a wonderful and safe holiday weekend!

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Gluten Free Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

Makes about 18 muffins

4 Tbsp coconut oil, melted

¾ cup non-dairy milk

2 eggs

¼ cup applesauce

2 medium bananas, mashed

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 cup gluten-free oatmeal

1 Tbsp chia seeds

1 cup gluten-free all purpose flour

½ cup brown sugar

1 Tbsp baking powder

½ tsp baking soda

½ tsp cinnamon

½ tsp salt

¾ cup dark chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Mix coconut oil, milk, eggs, applesauce, bananas, and vanilla extract in a large bowl.  Make sure the milk is not too cold to avoid the coconut oil clumping up.  Whisk until well combined.  Add the oats and chia seeds and set aside for about 15 minutes.

Mix the rest of the ingredients except chocolate chips in a separate bowl and whisk to remove any lumps.  Pour the dry ingredients into the wet and mix until just combined.  Stir in chocolate chips.  Pour into a greased muffin tin and bake for 20 minutes or until muffins are lightly browned and a knife inserted into the center comes out clean.  Let cool and enjoy!

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Gluten Free Banana Chia Pancakes

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Well, it is just a bonanza of successful cooking over here this weekend!  I guess that what a rainy weekend with no big plans will do…

My son is a big fan of pancakes, so I usually use the 365 Whole Wheat Buttermilk pancake mix and make a big batch for the freezer once every week or so.  We have him on a dairy free trial right now though, so I couldn’t use the mix because it has buttermilk in it.  This morning I thought I would just make a batch of pancakes from scratch without dairy.  So I mixed up all the wet ingredients and then realized I had no regular flour in the house.  Doh!  I did have some gluten-free all purpose flour, but most of the gluten free recipes call for xanthan gum as a binder and thickener, which I didn’t have either.

Thinking quickly, I decided to try chia seeds (read about the health benefits of chia seeds) in place of the xanthan gum due to their ability to thicken and bind..total experiment…and it worked out great!! As long as you don’t mind the little seeds in your pancakes, they don’t change the texture much at all, which was a nice surprise.  They were lightweight and very flavorful with a hint of coconut from the oil (read about the health benefits of coconut oil).  You might leave out the sugar if you are going to eat them with syrup though, as they came out a bit sweet. But I like ‘em like that just straight up!

Gluten-Free Banana Chia Pancakes

Adapted from Basic Pancakes, Everyday Food, September 2006

1 banana, mashed

2 Tbsp coconut oil, butter, or other vegetable oil

1 large egg

1 cup milk or dairy-free milk**

1 tsp vanilla

1 Tbsp chia seeds

1 cup gluten-free all purpose flour* (I used trader joe’s)

2 tsp baking powder

1/2 Tbsp sugar

¼ tsp salt

1/4 tsp cinnamon

Melt the coconut oil or butter.  Add the mashed banana, egg, milk, vanilla, and chia seeds.  Whisk together until well combined. Let mixture stand 10-15 minutes for the chia seeds to soften and thicken the mixture.

Add other ingredients and whisk until just combined.  Heat a griddle or frying pan over medium heat.  Lightly oil frying pan with an oiled paper towel.  Spoon mixture into pan and cook 1-2 minutes, until bubbles form on the surface of the pancake.

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Flip and cook 1-2 minutes more, until lightly browned on both sides.  Serve as is or with pure maple syrup.

*If your gluten free flour mix contains xanthan gum, omit the chia seeds, as the mixture may become too thick.

**If you are using a solid fat like coconut oil or butter, let your milk come to room temperature first so the fat doesn’t clump up