Is there a better food for toddlers than mini muffins? Simple and inexpensive to make, a mini muffin is easy for little hands to grab and eat, and a great vehicle for healthy ingredients like veggies, fruit, grains and healthy fats. A dark-fleshed sweet potato (often labeled as yams on grocery store shelves) is rich in fiber and beta-carotene, and can be grated and added to baked goods the same way carrots can.
If you like, add a shake of ground flaxseed to the batter to boost fiber, or add a splash of flax oil to increase omega-3 fatty acids.
Mini Sweet Potato-Apple Morning Glory Muffins
2 cups all-purpose flour (or half all-purpose, half whole wheat)
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
3 large eggs
1/2 cup canola or other mild vegetable oil
1/2 cup applesauce or plain yogurt
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 cups coarsely grated raw sweet potato or carrot
1 apple, coarsely grated (don’t bother peeling it)
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
Preheat the oven to 350˚F and line 24 mini or 12 regular muffin cups with paper liners.
In a large bowl, stir together the flour, sugars, cinnamon and salt. In a smaller bowl, whisk together the eggs, oil, applesauce and vanilla. Add to the dry ingredients along with the sweet potato, apple, raisins and walnuts and stir just until everything is combined.
Spoon into lined muffin cups, filling them 3/4 full. Bake for 15-20 minutes (for mini muffins) or 20-25 minutes (full-sized muffins), until the muffins are golden and springy to the touch. Tip the muffins in the pan to help steam to escape. Makes 1-2 dozen muffins.