Fresh homemade muffins (not to be confused with massive Costco "muffins") are just the thing to have about your kitchen when you wake up in the morning. Now that I am focusing on more strength and cardio training at the gym, I really want to upgrade my protein intake before I start the day. I am sharing this healthy twist on the traditional American muffin because, unlike the muffins we see in coffee shops that are merely un-iced cupcakes, this recipe offers a high-protein/low-sugar alternative to the standard fare. Whether you want to indulge in a tasty morning treat or focus on snacks that can help support your fitness goals, I would recommend baking a batch of these delicios cranberry and orange muffins. Unlike wheat flour, almond meal offers a unique texture and healthy boost of protein that can sustain you throughout the morning. The cranberries - which are tart and chewy - are deliciously paired with raw pecans and freshly grated orange zest. These little babies are the perfect fuel for a pre-workout or even an on-the-go morning snack.
Speaking of fitness goals, I actually have one that I would like to share. On March 2nd, I'll be supporting the National Multiple Sclerosis Society's annual Climb to the Top event. This is a unique event that raises funds to help more than 10,000 New York City, Westchester, Putnam, Rockland, Orange and Sullivan county residents affected by multiple sclerosis, a disease of the central nervous system that has no known cause or cure. I am teaming up with my friend Lori, whom I befriended during my first month here in New York City, to support her mother, Debbie, who was diagnosed with MS in 2001. I am incredibly lucky to have met Lori and to also be part of the MS Climbers Team. Please consider joining us - The MS Climbers - or if you don't climb, please give to my personal fundraising page! Every donation, small or large, will help support those living with MS, research, and advocacy efforts.
With that said, I am in for some serious training! on March 2nd, I'll be climbing 66 flights of stairs to the top of the observation desk in Rockefeller Center where we will be rewarded with an amazing view of the Manhattan skyline. Let the training begin!
3 cups almond meal ( I use TJ's "Just Almond Meal")
1/4 tsp of baking powder1
1 tsp zest from one orange, with the juice
1/4 cup of vanilla protein powder
1/2 cup of packed dried cranberries
1 cup chopped pecans to top the muffins
Do the usual thing: mix the dry, mix the wet, and combine. Mix well together. Add to muffin tins (should yield about 12 muffins). preheat 300 degree oven and bake for about 30-40 minutes or until firm at the touch.