Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Vanilla Pudding Banana Muffins

Last Sunday's Three for the Week post got me all excited to bake some muffins! It also got me thinking about my university days and how I never attempted to make muffins when I was living off campus. 

Instead I blew my money on buying them from the cafeteria. I probably could have baked a dozen muffins for the price I paid for one. 

My mind told me making muffins from scratch would be too hard…it was wrong.

First time I made muffins from scratch I learned that hardest part was cleaning the dishes. Yes there is a little more involved compared to preparing muffins using a mix from a box...but not much more. You'll need a few more ingredients and you’ll have to measure out a couple more items. That's about it!  

The reward for your extra effort is a much better tasting muffin, a touch of self-satisfaction (that's always good) and the opportunity to let your creativity take over by tweaking the recipe so your friends will think you’re a brilliant baker!

This Vanilla Pudding Banana Muffin recipe is one way you can take banana muffins and tweak them simply by pressing a cube of frozen vanilla pudding (or chocolate or caramel) into the batter of each muffin before baking them in the oven.

If you're living in a student house and decide to bake up a dozen of these muffins, be prepared!!! Once your housemates catch a whiff of these beauts they're going to want in on the action. If you're living on your own, you can put the extra muffins in a freezer bag and pop them in the freezer. When you get the muffin munchies, nuke a muffin in the microwave for about 10 seconds on high.

Beats buying them every day!

Happy Baking!

Vanilla Pudding Banana Muffins

Makes: 12 muffins
Takes: 10 to 15 minutes to prepare, 20 minutes to bake

1½ cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp each baking soda, ground nutmeg and salt
1 egg
½ cups mashed ripe bananas (about 3 bananas)
½ cup lightly packed brown sugar
2 tbsp canola or vegetable oil

1 vanilla pudding snack pack (place in the freezer until frozen)

 Spray a 12-cup standard-size muffin pan with cooking spray. Set aside.

 In a large bowl combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg and salt. Set aside.

 In a medium bowl, whisk together egg, mashed bananas, brown sugar, and oil. Add to dry ingredients and mix just until moistened. Divide batter evenly among the 12 muffin pan cups. 

 Remove pudding snack pack from freezer. Remove the frozen pudding from the container (you may have to run warm water over the plastic to allow the frozen pudding to release from it). Using a knife, cut it into 12 equal sized pieces. Divide among the 12 muffin cups and lightly press each frozen piece into the muffin batter.

 Bake in a 375ยบ F oven for 18 to 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in a muffin comes out clean. Remove muffins from pan and let cool on a wire rack.

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