Flourless Banana (Oatmeal) Muffins and One-pot Whole Wheat Penne with Spinach & Sundried Tomato

Hi everyone,
I woke up in the mood for overnight oats (except I hadn’t prepared any the night before 😔). So I decided to go for a smoothie but I knew my appetite was too big for a liquid breakfast. What to do, Zeina…what to do? Alright, we’ll go for muffins, then. Those overripe bananas needed some loving. I did a bit of Pinterest browsing and found a recipe that was perfect for satisfying my earlier craving for oatmeal and could be whipped up in the blender in a flash. I honestly can’t remember the source because I didn’t pin the recipe and there were tons of similar recipes on the results page. I don’t how I remembered some of the ingredients of this particular one by heart. Yes, this recipe was destined for my belly! I had some peanut butter chips in my panty that I felt like adding. Don’t judge me, but bananas without peanut butter is like donuts without glazing (or whatever that means – well, you get the point!!)
Alright, without further a due, here are the ingredients of the flourless banana muffins:

Flourless Banana Oatmeal Muffins

2 1/2 C rolled or quick-cooking oats
2 ripe bananas cut into large chunks
1 C low or non-fat greek yogurt (fat-free laban will do)
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 C sugar (white, brown or any other sweetener – 1/4 C honey if using)
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 C chocolate chips or Reese’s peanut butter chips (whichever you prefer, I used pb chips)

Blend all ingredients in a blender or food processor until oats are finely ground then pour the mix into a lined 12-cup muffin tin, or 12 silicone muffin cups and bake in a preheated oven at 200C for 15-20 mins (check for doneness using a toothpick)

The resulting muffins will be gooey and moist, and their sweetness will be just right. Let me know if you’re gonna try the recipe and comment below if you’d like to share your own tested and true banana muffin recipes…I’m simply bananas about bananas 😁

One-pot Whole Wheat Penne with Spinach and Sun-dried Tomatoes

Did anyone say ONE POT?!! Yes, please! I mean, who likes piled-up dishes in their sinks? Well, NOT me. Pinterest one-pot dinners are all the rage these days, I’ve actually tried a couple of dishes so far and they turned out pretty amazing. As I’ve read that the founder of such an easy yet versatile cooking method is Martha Stewart. So THAT’s the secret behind its elegance! The method is pretty simple. You add the uncooked pasta to a simmering broth or other liquid in the pot instead of boiling it in a separate one, add in a few vegetables, tomato puree or milk/heavy cream for a richer pasta dish, whatever works for you.
I had some frozen spinach and a jar of sundried tomatoes in my fridge so the idea of a pasta lunch seemed so appealing to me, especially that my little girl really loves pasta.

The recipe I found was a little different than mine but feel free to check out the original at this link:
http://www.bestestrecipes.com/2014/02/one-skillet-creamy-pasta.html?m=1

My adaptation always has to be healthier (with all those peanut butter chips I devoured this morning!! LOL – lighter was a MUST) I used low-fat milk, and a little light butter. I’m also not a big fan of chicken stock cubes and didn’t have fresh-made chicken broth, I used water instead and lots of seasoning to compensate for any flavor lost without broth.

Here’s the recipe: (Serves 2)
1 Tbsp olive oil
1-2 cloves of garlic
1 1/2 C low-fat milk
1 C chicken broth
Uncooked whole wheat penne
1 Tbsp light butter
1/2 C parmesan cheese
2 Tbsp cream cheese (room temperature)
2 Tbsp sliced sun-dried tomatoes, drained from oil if they’re preserved in it
1/2 C frozen or fresh spinach
Salt and pepper to taste

Heat oil in pan, add minced garlic and sautée for a minute. Add milk, broth, and pasta, bring to a boil and cover pot until pasta is cooked for 15 minutes. Add the cheeses, sun-dried tomatoes and spinach until welted. Sprinkle some salt and pepper to taste. Serve dish immediately.

What are your favorite pasta dishes? And how would you “healthify” them so you won’t feel guilty about pasta cravings? (not that I’m judging you if you don’t, pastas should make a separate and albeit necessary food group, if you ask me!) Let me know in the comments below.

Have a great healthy evening, everybody ☺️

DISCLAIMER: I don’t claim to be a health expert or nutritionist, nor am I food blogger, per se. A friend of mine suggested that I add a section to my blog covering my healthier recipes whose pictures I share on my Instagram and Facebook accounts. I’ve recently become health-conscious and that’s a road not so easy to stay on track of. By sharing my recipes and resolutions I’m holding myself accountable in front of you to stick to my healthy living goals. I do not intend by any means to offend anyone. I’m doing this because I care about my family’s health and wellness and mine first and I’m only here to help. I’m all about loving your body and yourself, so whatever makes you feel comfortable, whether you’re a huge foodie or not, is awesome ☺️

Love,
Zeina

IMG_6392-0

IMG_6393-0

Advertisements

Author: Zeina

I'm a Lebanese translation and editing professional. I mother two adorable children, a 7-year-old hero on the spectrum and a 2-year-old princess just launched on her terrible two's! Juggling parenthood and a home-based freelance career is no easy task, especially for a (hopefully recovering) perfectionist. This is where all the writing and poetry come to my aid, as a source of inspiration, hope and emotional well-being. Poetry is the spark of creativity that ignites my rather mundane life. Spirituality is what keeps me focused on my purpose.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s