Homemade Granola with Pumpkin, Pepitas and Chia Seeds

Before I forget to remind you, be sure to leave a comment for Monday’s NestFresh Giveaway. We choose a winner on Monday, November 10th!

Pumpkin Granola
I don’t buy granola at the supermarket.
Why would I, when I can make a healthier homemade granola that saves me money?

Store purchased granola is packed with sugar and sodium, so why would I bother spending my hard earned dollars on a crummy product, when making my own takes minutes.

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Whole Wheat Waffles with Oats, Apples and Chia Seeds


Whole Wheat Waffles with Oats, Apples, and Chia Seeds
I am THE worst pancake maker under the sun, thus the need to make waffles for my family.

Pumpkin and Oat Pancakes

It’s not that I am incapable of making pancakes. With an unreal amount of effort, and given lots of extra batter to make up for the ones I’ve burned, I can turn out a decent pancake like this pumpkin and oat version.

Notice I still got them a bit on the browned side. 

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Sunshine Muffins with Orange and Chia Seeds


Orange Chia Seed Muffins

If you’ve signed up for my weekly newsletter, then you know that this past Sunday’s theme was Muffin Madness.

In my excitement to share my family’s start the day right muffin recipes, I was disappointed to realize I’d missed out on these mini Sunshine muffins with fresh orange and chia seeds.

Banana Peanut Butter Muffins

I’m not a master baker or dessert maker, and have no inclination in that direction. Baking requires precision to create melt in your mouth treats, and I’m afraid I’m more of a chop and drop cook.

But I consider muffins a different thing. I can dump ingredients (okay, I do measure the baking powder and flour) in a bowl to turn out a healthy snack that won’t break the calorie bank, and satisfies my sweet tooth.

I want my muffins to be tender, packed with fruity goodness, and have lots of diet friendly fiber like the banana and peanut butter muffins you see above, so I have a few tips to share with you that work for me to that end.

Sunshine Muffins with Orange and Chia Seeds

The key to making a tender higher fiber muffin is dried or fresh fruit, and whole wheat pastry flour. It has the same nutrition profile as whole wheat flour, but turns out baked goods with a lighter texture.

You can find a terrific explanation of the difference between whole wheat and whole wheat pastry flour at The Gracious Pantry.

Sunshine Muffins with Orange and Chia Seeds

You can see the orange zest, dried cranberries, and bits of walnuts floating in my mini muffins, along with spicy cinnamon.

Sunshine Muffins with Orange and Chia Seeds

But this go around I wanted to pack more nutrition into my breakfast muffins so I tossed in chia seeds to add extra fiber and those brain healthy omega-3 fatty acids.

I won’t try to convince you that my Sunshine muffins are light and airy like those you buy in the bakery aisle at your local grocery store. However, they’re low in sugar, high in fiber, and naturally sweet enough to enjoy with your morning cup of coffee. They’ll stick with you a whole lot longer than their high sugar, low fiber cousins from the grocery store too!

It’s time to head off to work this Monday morning. If you give my muffins a try, be sure and leave a comment to let me know what you think!

Have a happy, healthy week everyone.


Sunshine Muffins with Orange and Chia Seeds
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Shake It Up! If you don't like to use stevia to reduce sugar in your recipe, simply replace with ¼ of sugar.
  • 2 medium oranges, zested and juiced
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg whites
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • ½ cup oats
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds
  • 4 packets stevia
  • ½ cup walnuts, chopped
  • ½ cup dried cranberries
  1. reheat the oven to 350 degrees and generously spray a mini muffin tin with cooking spray.
  2. Combine orange zest and juice, eggs, almond milk and vanilla in a large bowl and mix well.
  3. Add remaining ingredients and mix until blended.
  4. Pour into a mini muffin tin and bake for 15 - 20 minutes until muffins are cooked through. A toothpick inserted in the center should come out clean.
Food energy: 82kcal
Saturated fatty acids: 0.31g
Monounsaturated fatty acids: 0.67g
Polyunsaturated fatty acids: 1.62g
Total fat: 2.60g
Calories from fat: 23
Cholesterol: 10mg
Carbohydrate, by difference: 12.16g
Total dietary fiber: 2.26g
Protein: 3.17g
Total lipid (fat): 2.93g
Water: 32.43g
Ash: 0.82g
Total sugars: 4.43g
Calcium: 76mg
Iron: 0.56mg
Magnesium: 23mg
Phosphorus: 91mg
Potassium: 109mg
Sodium: 62mg
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 20 mini muffins

Sweet Potato Quick Bread with Fragrant Rosemary

Sweet Potato Quick Bread

Back in the day when I was raising my kids we’d make homemade bread and pretzels.

Jason and Lauren would sit across the counter from me as I’d knead the dough. Then I’d hand them a blob so they could roll out their own pretzels, or make their own mini loaves of fresh baked bread. They loved that fun time as much as I did, and you can imagine the joy on their faces when they could eat their creations.

I can picture those days as if they were yesterday – they’re captured in my heart.

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Homemade Granola Bars with Almonds, Dried Fruit and Dark Chocolate Chips

Homemade Granola Bars

You’ll laugh when I tell you the inspiration for these chewy, chocolaty granola bars.

On a recent shopping trip I discovered chopped dried plums on sale for half price in the baking section.

Half price! How could I pass that up!

It didn’t matter whether I needed them for a recipe I had in the works, they were half price with a shelf date far in the future.

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