Welcome back and Happy New Year!  Are you as sick of eating as I am?  I don’t think I can ever eat another cookie again.  At least not for a few weeks.

I’ve been thinking about the new year and I’m not a resolution person.  I like little goals that I set throughout the year, the short-term works much better for me.  An example….I’m going to try to eat more healthily.  I’m not dieting….just making a few changes so that my body is not trying to run on refined sugar and meat.  No fruits or vegetables whatsoever. Which it has been doing the past couple months.

I received some requests for gluten-free recipes and, although, I’m not ever going to follow a gluten-free diet I thought I would check out some of the products now available for those that do.  First up…gluten-free flour.  The package claimed it can be used “cup for cup” of regular wheat flour…and I found that to be true.  However, I’m not going to lie….I think if you’re going to replace it for regular wheat flour in a recipe you will need more moisture.  Without it, I found my muffins were dry and crumbly.  There are several gluten-free flour blends popping up at the stores recently, I just happened to use Trader Joe’s for this recipe but you can use whatever you like.

To conquer the dryness problem, I added the mashed bananas to this recipe I developed for Coconut Hazelnut Muffins.  Hence, the banana in the name now.  An extra egg and coconut oil also helped keep these from drying out.

Gluten-Free Coconut Banana Hazelnut Muffins

These are a great option for breakfast on the go….I would even go as far as adding a smear of homemade Coconut Butter.  I haven’t tried freezing them yet so do that at your own risk.

Gluten-Free Coconut Banana Hazelnut Muffins

Gluten-Free Coconut Banana Hazelnut Muffins

Makes 8 standard muffins

2 cups gluten-free flour blend (I used Trader Joe’s)

3/4 cup coconut sugar (You can use regular granulated sugar)

2 teaspoons baking soda

1/8 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 cup toasted unsweetened coconut flakes (I used Bob’s Red Mill)

1/2 cup roasted hazelnuts, finely chopped

2 ripe bananas, mashed

1 cup coconut oil

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 large eggs

unsweetened coconut flakes for sprinkling

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking soda and salt.  Set aside.

In a medium bowl, mix the bananas, toasted coconut, nuts, coconut oil, vanilla and eggs until thoroughly combined.

Add the banana mixture to the dry ingredients and mix to combine.

Coat a muffin tin with cooking spray and fill each cup 3/4 full with batter.  Sprinkle with coconut flakes and bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Let cool in the muffin tin for 2 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Gluten-Free Coconut Banana Hazelnut Muffins