These spinach muffins (or green muffins as we call them in our house!) are the perfect balance between nutritious and delicious. They add a little nutrition boost to breakfast and snacks in a sweet way and are a great choice for healthy muffins for kids!
I based the recipe off of my healthy whole grain blender muffins. I love blender muffins, mostly because they are EASY and don’t make a huge mess in the kitchen.
The color is fun and different – but no need to try to hide what’s in these green muffins. Have our kids dump ingredients into the blender and top them with hemp seeds.
How to Make Healthy Spinach Muffins
When you make these spinach muffins with applesauce recipe in the blender it’s so easy and fast!
You simply put all of the ingredients into the blender and blend away until it’s all smooth and the batter is green. Then pour into muffin tins, bake and you’ve got spinach breakfast muffins ready for eating.
Are muffins healthy?
Ahhhh, the “is it healthy” question. Everyone’s got an opinion about it, but I actually think ALL foods are “healthy” because the term healthy is subjective. Are all foods “nutritious?” They may not be packed with nutrition, but they definitely aren’t “bad.” Food isn’t BAD!
A muffin is a muffin. Whether you pack it full of nutritious foods or not – you’re still eating a sweet baked good in the morning.
This concept of a “nutrition perspective” vs a “habits perspective” is one that I’ve read more about in It’s Not About the Broccoli (affiliate) and I have to say that I’m totally guilty of this thinking – especially when it comes to food for my kids. I (of course) love adding nutrition into foods where I can. But not to the point of making a muffin or cookie unrecognizable! Because for me, the point is to enjoy a cookie for being a cookie or a muffin for being a muffin.
When we focus too much on adding nutrition into items like muffins and then serve them for breakfast because they are “healthy,” we’re actually training our kids to expect and prefer sweet, baked goods for breakfast. They don’t know which muffins are paleo and sweetened with maple syrup or which muffins are just “regular” versions. They are both a sweet, baked good. So the focus needs to shift from purely nutrition, to a healthy mix of both nutrition and habits. Makes sense, right?
Healthy Muffins for Kids:
When I’m coming up with healthy muffins for kids, I also like to consider healthy muffins for adults, because we all eat the same foods in my house!
So while I did use a touch of “real” sugar, I’ve found that it makes the texture much more like a bakery muffin, which is what I was after for this recipe. (See above if you are concerned about this.)
BUT, these green muffins are also packed with nutritious ingredients! We’ve got:
- Oats: fiber, protein, whole grains…gangs all here!
- Whole wheat flour: more fiber, more vitamins but lighter than the oats to give the sweet spinach muffins some lift.
- Spinach: spinach muffins wouldn’t exist without the spinach! Add a vegetable boost, without changing the flavor
- Applesauce: the applesauce serves a few purposes in these healthy applesauce muffins – moisture and sweetness!
- Hemp seeds: totally optional, but I love adding hemp “sprinkles” to foods when I can. They add nutritious fats and a little fun!
How to Freeze Spinach Muffins:
If you don’t think you’ll eat these green muffins within a few days, I highly recommend freezing them! This way you can take them out as needed – they are already individually portioned.
All you need to do is put in a freezer bag and remove as much of the air as you can. I actually tested wrapping each muffin in plastic wrap vs. just putting them in the bag and there was no difference, so skip the plastic!
What to Serve with Spinach Muffins:
On their own, these little muffins are pretty low in calories to be considered a full meal. But if we add a little more protein/fat/fiber (the three nutrients that help keep you full and satisfied!), we’ve built a great meal. Pair your popeye muffins with one or more of the following:
- Peanut butter (or nut butter): this will add a filling combination of protein, fiber, and healthy fats. Could also just serve some nuts or seeds on the side.
- Hard boiled egg: adding an egg or two will turn this into a full meal.
- Butter: we use grass-fed butter in our house, it adds some fat – and major flavor.
- Milk: need to keep it easy? Serve it with a glass of milk for some protein and fat (if you like whole milk like we do!).
Tools to Make Blender Muffins:
Blender muffins obviously require a blender! Some blender muffins don’t have to be blended, but because these fruit and veggie muffins have whole spinach leaves in it, the mixture needs to be blended to both break up the spinach and incorporate it completely into the batter.
- Blender: I have used (and loved) my blendtec for years. I researched extensively between the vitamix and blendtec and bought a refurbished blendtec. It’s worth the investment!
- Muffin tins: this is also obviously a requirement for green muffins!
Learn how to make these EASY spinach muffins! These green muffins have the perfect balance between “bakery” style texture and nutritious ingredients.
- 1 cup oats
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 2 cups spinach
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup applesauce
- 1 egg
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
- 1 Tbsp. cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp salt
- optional: hemp seeds for sprinkles
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Line a 12-cup muffin tin with muffin liners and prepare liners if necessary.
- Add all ingredients except for hemp seeds into blender. Blend until combined and smooth, about 10-30 seconds, depending on your blender.
- Divide mix (about 1/3 cup scoop) into muffin tins, they should be about 3/4 full.
- Sprinkle with hemp seeds if desired.
- Bake for about 15-18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of a muffin comes out clean.
- Pair green muffins with one of the items listed above for a full meal or filling snack.
Keywords: muffins, spinach muffins