Healthy Savory Muffins for the Holidays
Gluten and dairy-free, these muffins are perfect for houseguests, hostess gifts, or simple, healthy breakfasts during the week.
Recipes are not what you typically see here on Pineapple Ponderings, but I am OBSESSED with these muffins. I make a batch every Sunday and then Dave and I have them if we are in a hurry in the mornings, need a little bite, etc. I was making them today and realized that these would be great for holiday houseguests. They can be made in advance, frozen, and are both gluten-free and dairy-free.
These are savory, so if you only like blueberry/pumpkin-type muffins, they will not float your boat.
How did we start making these? At some point last summer, Dave decided to read The Plant Paradox by Dr. Steven Gundry. It is all super-healthy with a lot of things you can’t eat, and I grew tired of it, but this is where we found the original recipe, so Dr. G. gets a big thumbs up from me just for this. I have a link to the book above in case you want something a little more official than my I-don’t-really-measure recipe.
I think making these in the little muffin tins (rather than the normal size) is perfect for guests.
These would also be a fun hostess gift. You could either freeze them and bring them in the container (already marked with the date and what it is). Perhaps put this container on top of a little platter and tie with a bow for a gift. Or, go really super-achiever and add linen napkins - see photo at the end of the post. Or, just put them in a ziplock and toss them in a cute bag (but keep them chilled).
This is the most forgiving recipe ever. I use pre-cooked chicken sausage links, but have also used shredded chicken breasts; I think the chicken breasts was when I had already cooked them and they were a bit dry, so this was a perfect use. For that matter, you could use regular sausage, but the idea here was to keep it healthy.
It calls for a bag of frozen spinach, but I once used fresh wilted spinach. And the herbs/spices - use what you love!
Here we go.
Four spicy pre-cooked chicken sausage links (you can use more, but four work for me)
Eight organic eggs
One 16 oz. organic frozen spinach
2 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 cloves of garlic (or 2 teaspoons garlic powder)
“Kimberly’s Seasoning Mix” (The original recipe called for 3 Tablespoons of Italian Seasoning, but I ran out of that so made it this way)
2 Tablespoons dried Oregano
1 Tablespoon Thyme (or the leaves from about 10 fresh sprigs)
1 teaspoon Coriander
1 teaspoon Cayenne (we like it with a kick)
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
Two Tablespoons dried minced onion
If you don’t care about the dairy-free thing, a bit of feta added to the top at the very end makes them a little prettier.
Heat the over to 350 degrees. Line the muffin pans with paper liners.
Here’s where it gets just a tiny bit tricky. You certainly can just buy crumbled chicken sausage and mix all of this together in a bowl. I however, like to chop it up in my food processor, because I use the link sausages. Know that either way works. You just don’t want big chunks of meat in the mini-muffins.
Defrost your frozen spinach in the microwave and when cool, squeeze as much water as possible out of the spinach. This is REALLY important. I usually just put in in my hands and literally squeeze the water out. You could also use a piece of cheesecloth or even paper towels.
If your sausages have casing, remove it and slice the sausage into about 1” pieces.
Break the eggs into a bowl and give them a quick whisk.
Combine the drained spinach, sausage, eggs, olive oil, garlic, seasoning mix and minced onion in your food processor/blender and mix until all is chopped and thoroughly mixed. Fill the muffin tins to the top (they won’t expand much) and bake for about 30 minutes, until the top begins to brown and the eggs are cooked. Let cool.
If you are freezing or storing them, just leave them in the liners. When ready to eat, I reheat three muffins in the microwave for 30 seconds.
Here is the hostess gift idea. Note I had nothing nearby in holiday colors, so just grabbed a couple of ribbons, a platter and some fabric.
And that’s it! Hope you enjoy - experiment as they really are forgiving.