MAN, OH, Maaaaaan are these a winner! I had lost my hand-scrawled, barely legible recipe for my flourless banana muffins and tried a few others I’d found online. It was…disappointing to say the least. I dug through every single recipe paper I had until I finally found the damn thing, and it was SO worth it!!! I’ve adapted my original recipe to be even more incredible. I prefer gluten-free recipes that don’t require an alternative flour as they rarely have much, if any, nutritional value (though, I’ll admit, sometimes you just want a damn baked good!). I pretty much keep these in stock at our house and make a double batch (24 mini and 12 regular muffins) whenever we start to run low. We eat these for breakfast more often than not!

Oh and I buried the lead! This recipe is whipped up quicker than quick in a high speed BLENDER!!! You’re welcome;)

Roasting the bananas is totally optional but quite delicious if you have 15 minutes to spare. You can customize this recipe with walnuts or pecans. I usually use my homemade almond butter but have also used the raw store bought variety that is only almonds and it works great too!

Flourless chocolate banana bread muffins

*makes ~ 12 regular or 24 mini muffins

  •  1 1/4 cups old fashioned oats
  • 3 medium ripe bananas (if desired, roast bananas in skin on baking sheet at 350 degrees for 15 minutes)
  • 1/4 cup almond butter
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips or chunks

~ Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a muffin tin.

~ Combine all ingredients except chocolate in a high powered blender. Blend until smooth. If the batter is warm, let cool before stirring in the chocolate or it will melt. Stir in chocolate.

~ Pour into muffin tins filling each hole a little over 3/4 of the way full.

~ Bake at 350 degrees. Bake regular muffins for 15-16 minutes and mini muffins for 12-13 minutes. Baking times may vary depending on the amount of natural oil in your particular almond butter so keep an eye and don’t over-bake. They should be fluffy and very moist.


 Flourless chocolate banana bread muffins

Flourless chocolate banana bread muffins

pumpkin pie, mascarpone, baking, recipe, dessert, food photographer, food photography, crystal cartier

Happy Holidays all you wonderful people out there!! May you be surrounded by loved ones and good cheer this year, not to mention insanely delicious foods as far as the eye can see:) This creme fraiche swirled pumpkin sweet potato pie should be one of those foods, and it’s soooo purty! I like to serve it with fresh whipped cream and a spoonful of bananas foster from our previous parfait recipe. Stupid delicious and a bit of a different spin on pumpkin pie.

  • 1 recipe of your favorite 9 inch pie crust, or buy from the store
  • 1 1/2 cups roasted or canned pumpkin puree (you can also substitute other squashes like kabocha or butternut)
  • 3/4 cup roasted sweet potato puree
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons packed finely grated fresh ginger
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon allspice
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups half and half
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • about 1/2 package creme fraiche (~3 1/2 ounces) or sour cream, as dollops in pie
  • fresh whipped cream
  • bananas foster recipe

~ Position rack in lower third of oven and preheat to 400 degrees.

~ In a heavy bottomed pan, mix together pumpkin/squash, sweet potato purees, maple syrup, sugar, spices and salt. Bring to a simmer, stirring frequently for ~ 5 minutes. Cook 10-15 minutes stirring continuously until mixture becomes thick and glossy.

~ Place pie crust in pie pan so it’s ready and waiting.

~ In a large pyrex, whisk together eggs, half and half and vanilla, then slowly whisk in the hot squash mixture until thoroughly combined. Pour custard through a medium-fine mesh sieve into the prepared pie crust.

~ Bake the pie at 400 degrees for 10 minutes then decrease the temperature to 300 degrees and bake for 35 more minutes or more depending on the wetness of your squash mixture. The outer edges should be set and puffed up while the middle should be a bit wiggly like jello. When we made this with fresh roasted quash versus canned pumpkin it took 10 minutes longer so adjust accordingly based on your mixture but remove from oven when the middle still jiggles as a bit as it will continue to cook once removed.

~ Remove from oven and plop small dollops of creme fraiche or sour cream into the hot pie. Swirl dollops with a knife or wooden skewer.

~ Cool at room temperature for 3 hours then refrigerate. Serve with whipped cream and bananas foster.

ENJOY and Happy Holidays!!!

Sometimes my sweet tooth is very specific. Do you guys ever find this to be the case? If I don’t satisfy that precise craving with something in the ballpark I end up consuming way too much sugar/sweets without satiating the desire. Bad news bears. Sometimes it’s rice pudding, sometimes creme brulee, and sometimes it’s the boozy sweetness of bananas foster paired with some creamy dairy dream. Though I have a sweet tooth, I find most desserts are just way too sweet for me in general. I tend to cut the sugar in most recipes and, in that vein, find bananas foster over ice cream to be so sweet that it dominates the delightful flavors in the dish. The easy and healthier alternative to a so-sweet-it-makes-you-pucker foster is swapping ice cream for plain greek yogurt. The thick, creamy, tartness of the yogurt is such a nice contrast to the warm flavors of banana, whiskey and spice. Mmmmm, I want some right now. Make this, it’s easy and awesome and you get to light something on fire! Win-win!

When I shot this I made it with homemade ice cream which I make A LOT less sweet than store bought but I still find it a bit too much. The Mister loves it with the ice cream but the yogurt version is definitely my jam!

makes 2 servings, 4 if you’re feeling well-behaved;)

Bananas Foster- copyright Crystal Cartier

  • 1 tablespoons unsalted butter or coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup dark brown sugar or coconut sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup whiskey (I like Jack Daniels)
  • 2 ripe bananas, 1/3″ slices
  • 1/2 cup raw pecans or these maple glazed pecans (leave out the herbs)
  • 2% plain greek yogurt

~ Bring whiskey, butter/oil, sugar, cinnamon and allspice to a boil in a large skillet. Turn the heat off (so as not to ignite the whiskey) and gently stir the mixture until the sugar dissolves.

~Return to medium heat and bring to a simmer. At this point I like to ignite the mixture with the burner flame or a grill lighter and watch it dance. It’ll die down on it’s own but light with care because it’s a hefty amount of booze and makes a big flame.

~Simmer until the mixture thickens a bit, add bananas and cook until just barely soft, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in pecans.

~ Let cool then spoon over cups of yogurt.


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