I know it’s a funny time of year to be posting about a lunchbox item! However, I have been making these all year and have had so many requests for the recipe, I thought I’d post it here while I was emailing my friends. Also, as the year is winding up, I am thinking towards next year, when my eldest will be off to preschool 2 days a week and needing a lunchbox. When he was about 18 months, he went off eating vegetables. Prior to that, he ate wholemeal sandwiches at lunchtime and veggies and meat and pasta for dinner. In a bid to get him back to eating veggies, and to take the pressure off dinner time, I started making vegetable pancakes and vegetable muffins for lunch. It got lots of veggies in to him, however, now he won’t eat sandwiches!
So, my freezer is constantly full of zucchini pikelets and these vegetable muffins. Next year, I will grab a couple of these out of the freezer in the morning and put them in my son’s lunch box...until he finally starts eating vegemite sandwiches like his friends!!!
This recipe comes from the CSIRO Wellbeing Plan for Kids Book which I really love. I have changed the recipe a bit. It calls for margarine, but I am fundamentally against margarine so I have substituted for vegetable oil. The recipe also calls for low fat milk and cheese. I use whichever of those items I have at home, often reduced fat, but that’s not my primary focus for my boys’ meals. Obviously I don’t want them eating high fat, but I’m more interested in unprocessed food (most of the time!).
I have made these a few times in mini muffin tins for kids birthday parties and they go down a treat too!
Vegetable, cheese & pepita muffins
- 1 cup wholemeal plain flour
- 1 cup plain white flour
- 4 teaspoons of baking powder
- 1.5 cups milk
- 2-4 eggs (Depends on the consistency you prefer. Both options are nice! Sometimes I like more eggs to increase protein for the boys.)
- 2 zucchinis
- 2 carrots
- 125 mls of vegetable oil
- ½ cup grated cheese
- ½ teaspoon dried mixed herbs
- Extra grated cheese & pepitas (pumpkin seeds) for sprinkling
- Preheat oven to 190 degrees Celsius
- Line 2 12 hole muffin tins with paper patty pans (or spray muffin tins with oil spray)
- Grate cheese and set aside
- Grate carrots and zucchinis & place on paper towel and squeeze liquid out of veggies
- Put the flour, baking powder and herbs in a large mixing bowl (sift if you want to!)
- Place milk, oil and eggs in a jug and whisk lightly.
- Pour liquid in to flour and mix with a wooden spoon. Add veggies and cheese and mix through.
- Spoon mixture in to pan, filling papers about two thirds – leaving room for them to rise.
- Sprinkle with grated cheese and pepitas. (I don't put pepitas on my 1 year old's muffins, just in case they are a bit of a chocking hazard!)
- Bake for about 20 minutes or until the muffins spring back when pressed.
- Cool on a wire rack before serving.
- If you want to freeze them, allow to cool completely and then store in airtight container or in zip lock bags.
- These can be tricky to peel out of the papers, especially when hot. Once they’ve been refrigerated or frozen, they are much easier to peel.
I have updated the above recipe to increase the amount of oil and with the option of reducing the number of eggs and not using paper muffin cases depending on your preference. I think they were a bit crispier without the cases, but they did stick to the tin. Without cases is easier for kinder lunchboxes but the cases are cute if using them for a party! Basically, this is a very forgiving recipe so feel free to switch things around!!!xoxo
I hope if you try this recipe, your kids love these as much as my boys do!
Love Amy xoxo