Friday, February 24, 2006

Peanut Butter & Jelly Muffins

Here's a different twist on pb&j: I made oat & barley flour peanut butter muffins topped with chopped peanuts, then used a piping bag with a large star tip to pipe some of my mom's homemade blackberry jam (mmm, thanks, mom!) into the center. I packed two muffins, an organic apple, baby carrots, and some new ranch-flavored bean dip I've been working on. Beverage: vanilla soy milk. You can't really tell from the picture but the muffin liners have footballs all over them, so I snuck in a little football-shaped pencil topper for a surprise.
Verdict: I was wondering if two muffins would be too much, but all but two bites were gone. And my whole family is raving about the new bean dip -- yay, a healthy alternative to vegan sour cream and another recipe for the book! 4 stars.

81 comments:

suzanne said...

Wow! These muffins sound wonderful! I think I'll pack something similar for my lunch next week. Thanks for the great ideas!

the vegan vulcan said...

Yay! I get to be the first to comment today!

Looks great, as always. You are a brilliant chef.

I hope the PB&J muffins are in the book. I'd sure like to make them!

the vegan vulcan said...

Oh, never mind. I guess it just showed up as "0 Comments" on my computer.

Oh well. . . I'm still drooling over those muffins!

KaiVegan said...

The muffins look very good! I packed some carrot sticks in my dh's laptop lunchbox for today too.
It's Friday again. Jennifer, you should start sending li'l Shmoo to school on weekends, too!

Loz said...

Oh my!! Those muffins look so good I had to have a look at the bigger pic to see them more closely!! Definitely put that recipe in your book!

I can't believe I look at your blog every day now. Boo hiss for weekends!

Anonymous said...

Looking forward to the "ranch-flavored bean dip" recipe you perfected. I can't wait for your cookbook.

On another note: I never heard of seitan until I saw it on this blog. I tried seitan for the first time today! It was pretty good. Whole Foods prepares it with stewed tomatoes and bell peppers.

-Pia

zcook said...

This is my first visit to your blog, I just had to say, your lunch boxes look great and I will make sure my veggie eaters visit your site. Great looking muffins.

sarchan said...

That's so cute. Peanut butter has to be one of my favorite things in the world--those muffins look delicious!

Anonymous said...

Yum! Your lunches always look so delicious!

Michelle said...

Oh my! My toddler will love those muffins. Can't wait for the cookbook! The bean dip sounds good too...

brittanie said...

I have a new favorite blog! Thanks for the great ideas=)

Dreena said...

A ranch flavored bean dip is a fantastic idea, Jennifer!! I agree, there are a lot of recipes out there for dairy alternatives using tofu sour cream and cream cheese, and these can be overused. Can't wait to hear more on it! :)

Cali Girl said...

Mmmm...Looks yummy!! I really wanna make these muffins! Hope they're in the cookbook..On second thought I hope EVERYTHING on here is in the cookbook!! It all looks so good.
Jennifer- Thanx for the awesome recipes and lunch ideas!! As a college student I bring a packed lunch with me everyday to school and you have given me alot of new ideas!! Before this blog I packed the same thing everyday (so sad=( )!! Thanx for the inspiration!! =)

Nicole said...

Is there anything wrong with soy sour cream? It sounded like your bean dip was a "healthy" alternative.

Mmmmmmmm, PB&J Muffins.... I wouldn't even have to share them!

Keep up the good work!

SuperMomz said...

Wow - thanks for all the great lunch ideas. I always need ideas for my sons lunch box. Now he can more variety and not have PB and Jelly with Carrots and Hummus each day!!

So great to see healthy, vegan alternatives...I wish all the Moms at Jacks school would read your blog - then perhaps they would not turn their nose up at him being vegan!

art.official. said...

am really enjoying your blog!!!

Eli said...

Are you an angel?

I think this is my favorite lunch yet! I was wondering when PBJ was going to rear it's lunchy head.

Jennifershmoo said...

>>Is there anything wrong with soy sour cream?

Not per se. I was just thinking that it's a pretty processed food, and it would be nice to find a simple, cheap alternative. Beans are lower in fat, too.

Michelle said...

can you be my mom? i'm not even a vegan and that looks sooooo good, i want to convert!

vegan marissa said...

VERY CREATIVE (the pbj muffins)
10 stars!

Avery said...

Blackberry jam is one of my favorite things!! I love it on hot cornbread!! It impossible to find it WITH the seeds!! I guess I am going to have to make my own when the come into season! I always wanted to try!

If you need testers for the book, I gladly volunteer my services! I am a SAHM too so I have the time!

Kim said...

Hi Jennifer, I've been reading your blog for a couple of months now and I just want to thank you for the inspiration. I've been a vegetarian for going on 4 years now and this year is the year I've commited to transitioning to vegan, but it's been intimidating to think about basic recipes I can use every day and still feel nourished in the right way. The meals you make for your son are things that everyone can enjoy and I've completely enjoyed planning lunches and dinners the 'shmoo' way haha. Thanks again! I made that whole wheat corn bread with black eyed peas tonight and oh boy will that be a staple!

Tabitha Grimalkin said...

I just found your blog -- I love it!! Keep up the amazing work!!

Millie said...

I love reading your posts!

Anonymous said...

I want you to be my mom!


(sorry for the anon. comment. Can't remember my name on blogger)

Anonymous said...

So when is this cookbook coming out!
I can't wait!
;)

Dobsonites said...

Can I ask what ranch flavour is? I've heard of it, but never seen it here (Hi from New Zealand!)

ADFR said...

cant believe being vagan tastes so good, hats off to you!

Karen Anne said...

Ah, your Mom - it's hereditary? Tell us about your Mom's cooking...

Karen Anne said...

New Zealand - in its non-vegan form, Ranch dressing is sour cream and mayonnaise (better than it sounds) with garlic and various other spices.
I'm astonished that U.S. megabusiness has not gotten this to the rest of the world :-) U.S. contamination must be less prevalent than I'd thought :-)

deva said...

those muffins look amazing. PBJ is one of my favorite foods (on whole wheat.. on corn bread... mixed together warmed over soy dream vanilla...)... what a wonderful idea!!

xsparklerx said...

Mmmmmm peanut butter muffins. I've been reading your blog for awhile now, but I think this will finally be the idea I use. They look so much nicer than the pb&j whole wheat toasted sandwich I had today. I hope the recipe's in your cookbook, but till then I'll try to figure out something close myself. Thanks for the inpiration :)

s b said...

hey jennifer
i discovered ur blog recently.
i live in india where cuisine changes every 50 km but never knew western food could have so much variety.
will definitely try some of ur recipes.
keep up de good work!!!

R2K said...

PBNJ! For a while there, I ate that for a year in a row, every day.

R2K

traceyd said...

I'm beginning to not like weekends. No new lunches! Doesn't Schmoo eat lunch on the weekends too? :-)

Karen Anne said...

Let's hope for a second cookbook on dinners :-)

Rissa said...

Sounds delicious.Not to mention nutricious.

moonscape said...

I love your vegan blog; the food looks so yummy!

Amy said...

so where is the recipe for the yummy pb muffins? I would love to find it!!

*smile*

Karlie said...

I really like the food you post! I am not a vegan or vegetarian, but I AM a probable celiac (waiting for the biopsy this summer) so I find that many of your recipes I can adapt. I have a question, when you make baked goods with flours other than wheat, do you do special substitutions? I have so many recipes from pre-celiac days I'd like to convert.

Also, I noticed on the PETA kids site that they say urea and ureic acid that are used in food are animal derived - they're actually not. Food-safe urea is completely chemically derived - not that that makes it any better from us! I still try to avoid chemicals wherever possible, and I'm starting to remove gelatin from my diet and substitute agar instead (and tofu/tempeh for meat!).

Anonymous said...

Dobsonites-- The ranch dressing I used to buy was made with buttermilk. I've never seen it with sour cream and mayo, but perhaps different brands do it differently. Has anyone discovered a good vegan ranch dressing?!

Amanda said...

When I make jelly-filled muffins (either PB or just plain whole wheat), I pour half the batter into the muffin tins, spoon about 1 tsp. jelly into a "well" in the middle of each one, and then pour on the remaining batter. It works great for those of us without piping bags. :) By the way, I found your site through the Bloggie awards ballot, and am hooked!

Anonymous said...

I vote for a new site -- The Vegan Dinner Table! I too miss you on the weekends and on all those early-dismissal days

VLyandra said...

I make my own vegan ranch dressing. You can buy ranch seasoning packets that are vegan (check the ingredients, some have whey), and mix it with silken tofu and some plain soymilk until it reaches the desired consistency. (Use the amount of tofu/soymilk equal to the amount called for on the ranch seasoning package.) I guess you could mix the seasoning with vegan sour cream, but I'm not a huge fan of that stuff.

Preston said...

Goodness, that looks like one tasty lunch you've assembled!

I too have a vegan blog that is ALL THE RAGE with the kids these days, so I'll have to send them over here to read up on your healthy little snack ideas. (They do as I command them, you see.)

- Preston

Diana said...

Mmm, how yummy do those muffins look? Reminded me that we have a jar of homemade fig jam in the cupboard that we have yet to open.

You've also inspired me to start posting some of my vegan fare on my blog too. I started in the hope of keeping better track of favourite recipes & as a reminder of things that I haven't had for a while.

Diana

mum said...

Those muffins look great .. nah! Everything looks great but I don't ever see myself as a strict vegan anytime soon in the future...

Great site!

Jessikah said...

Hi, my name is Jess. I'm from Sydney, Australia. I am a vegetarian who is hoping, over time, to remove eggs & dairy from my diet.

I loooove the lunchbox, and am thinking of ordering one. Do you think it would be big enough for an adult? I currently use a lunchbox, small container and salad container and I am sick of carrying three boxes - love the idea of one easy pouch!!

You are an inspiration :)

-Jess

LuvSeals Soaps said...

mmm, that looks tasty good.

hey, check out our soaps-- they're animal-free!

R2K said...

I think I became allergic to PB for a while as a kid..

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H, luvseals soaps, your site looks very nice, but it doesn't work with the Firefox browser, stuff is overlaid.

Sonya said...

Are the muffins less sweet than a regular muffin? I would imagine they wouldn't need to be terribly sweet, since they're full of jam. They look really REALLY good, and I don't even like PB&J!

kim said...

As for Vegan Ranch Dressing you should try the Follow your Heart dressings. Very good!
www.followyourheart.com

Fladder said...

hi, i like these lunches you you make you little shmoo every day. as for me, i dont think i could miss my dairy, but i do eat less meat than everybody here at home (i respect my mom too much to ask her to cook separately or to cook myself, she makes good stuff for us)

anyway, just wanted to know.. have you heard of innocent? they make healthy fresh juices and crunchies and smoothies. some of them have yoghurt in them, but others are 100% fruits, that makes them vegan! i love the fresh healthy taste of fruit juice.. (id say in the morning, but i just love it all day long)

not neat freak said...

Hi from Canada.

I am surprised you are able to send your child to school with PB and J. In most schools here we are allergy aware and ban the use of it in the buildings. There are so many children now who have anaphylaxis and when the possibility of them dying right there in the lunch room is apparent, we need to take care of them.

I've seen first hand the effects of peanut butter on children and it is alarming how quickly that child can swell up and have difficulty breathing. We have epipens on all of the children that have allergies requiring them, and all the staff at school have been taught how to use them.

I once saw a child go into anaphylactic shock after another child arrive at school and touch his chair after eating peanutbutter for breakfast and not washing his hands afterwards. It's a very scary thing to see.

Don't get me wrong I am a lover of peanutbutter, and being a ovo-lacto for my entire life, it is a great protein booster for me. I am just surprised that Americans are not as cautious as the Canadians.

Nicola said...

awesome foods!

Karen Anne said...

not neat freak, when an allergic child is enrolled in a school, all the parents are notified and pb is banned. However, there is no need to ban it when there is no problem.

Anonymous said...

That's right about the peanut butter. I am teacher and we have "peanut free" classrooms when there is a peanut allergic child, plus "peanut free" lunch room tables. The kids are all so savvy about it and stick with the rules.

Anonymous said...

Many schools do ban peanut butter but a very small percentage of children actually have peanut allergies less 1% according to the American Journal of Medicine. You truly have only a minute percentage of the population with the allergies.

There have been many lawsuits against schools when they have tried to ban peanut butter. We do not make one child suffer for others' allergies. Accommodations are made for the child with the peanut allergies. I have heard of peanut free tables.

Jennifershmoo said...

Yes, there is no one with peanut allergies in shmoo's class (they don't have a lunch room, they eat at their desks). If someone was allergic we would all be notified and would certainly refrain from bringing them to school.

>>I've completely enjoyed planning lunches and dinners the 'shmoo' way haha

LOL! That could be the title of my next book -- "Planning Dinners the Shmoo Way".

>>so where is the recipe for the yummy pb muffins?

Right now, it's on scraps of paper floating around my office. :-)

>>Are the muffins less sweet than a regular muffin?

Yes, they're not too sweet plain but with the jam they're just right.

>>Ah, your Mom - it's hereditary? Tell us about your Mom's cooking...

Hi, Karen Anne! Ah, my mom is a cooking goddess! She will decide to make a pie for dinner and do it like it's effortless. She'll throw together a perfectly flaky piecrust without looking at a recipe or even using a measuring cup (just a scoop).

And even better than that is, she's gone vegan, too!! It was for her health, which has shown such improvement in the past few months. The doctor was able to lower her bp medications and told her to keep it up!

In fact, we're going over for dinner right now!! Ta!

Josie said...

even though im a junior in high school...will you pack my lunch as well?

great idea with the muffins. im going to make some when i get home tomorrow!

and even though i have a semester and 3/4 left of HS im still buying one of those lunch dividers/containers/really awesome things.

Tom said...

"If someone was allergic we would all be notified and would certainly refrain from bringing them to school."

Thanks for that. I have a young daughter with peanut allergies. Its so easy to control what she's exposed to now, but we lose that control when she starts school in a couple years. Scary stuff.

unrestrained said...

Wow! I love it! Amazing and original blog...I'm not vegan but I try to live a healthyly lifestyle and diet. I will definately be back to check out what your creations!

mac_davis said...

Hello, why do you eat and have your kids eat vegan?

Anonymous said...

mac_davis, there's a link on the sidebar saying 'Why Vegan?' which gives the reasons she is vegan.

Also there was a post a while back which quoted some comments Schmoo made about wishing all the other kids in his class were vegan so no more animals would have to die.

So, basically both Schmoo and his mom chose veganism because they're concerned about cruelty to animals.

(Although I suspect there's a certain amount of self-interest on Schmoo's part in choosing between eating vegan meals like mommy makes or omni meals like daddy makes. Having seen Jen's cooking, that one's kind of a no-brainer. If she'd cook all my meals for me, I'd probably go vegan too...)

Harmonia said...

What kind of peanut butter do you use?

Jennifershmoo said...

Hi, Harmonia! I use Marantha Organic Creamy. It's so much creamier than what I can make at home, we all love the consistency.

>>I have a question, when you make baked goods with flours other than wheat, do you do special substitutions? I have so many recipes from pre-celiac days I'd like to convert.

Hi, Karley! When I substitute for wheat flour I usually use another gluten-containing flour like barley or spelt. But if you're celiac you can't have any gluten, and gluten-free flours don't substitute well in regular recipes without a little work.

I would strongly recommend you get a copy of "The Food Allergy Survival Guide" by Jo Stepaniak and Vesanto Melina:

http://www.vegsource.com/jo/books/allergies.htm

All the recipes are completely free of gluten, and Jo has made a baking mix you can substitute for flour.

Amy said...

So do you think you would share the pb muffin recipe?? i would not be above paying for it.....lol!

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peanut butter and jelly muffins
if my mouth waters any more i think i might drown

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MeganHieger said...

WOW! What a great mom! I'm gradually trying to make the move to veganism, after having spent the better part of my existence as an on/off lactoovovegetarian. The challenge is living in Texas (Where beef and BBQ are the culinary demigods)and not being sure of good resources. Plus, I am going to miss Tex-Mex. Do you have a recipe for vegan chile con queso or any other Tex-Mex favorites? Thanks for posting such a neat blog!

Anonymous said...

Amy, hang in there and wait for the cookbook :-)

Mallory said...

If you just can't wait for the cookbook, there's a decent peanut butter oatmeal muffin recipe on www.vegweb.com. You can make those and pipe in the jam, or try to modify that recipe based on what Jennifer has suggested.

I like oatmeal muffins as a good place to hide ground flax... gotta trick people into eating their flax! :-)

Ruthie said...

Megan

Don't be silly, you know the foundations of delicious tex mex food are actually black beans, refried or boracho beans (both pintos), corn, corn or flour tortillas, peppers, onions cilantro, salsa, mole, chipotle, and rice. Not even to mention calabaza, mango, agave, nopalitoes and all those other exotic produce items. My very vegan husband and I live in San Antonio, (where folks know what salsa should taste like), and we vegan just fine. In fact, we eat tex-mex 5 out of 7 days a week. Kidney bean chili, refrito tostadas, black bean burritoes, spanish rice, black bean chipotle soup, grilled marinated tofu fajitas with bell peppers and onions, stewed pintos with peppers, onions, tomatoes, and corn. You can do it! :-D Some days all we have energy for is dumping beans, salsa, and veggies into a skillet and cooking till tender. Then wrapping in a tortilla. Yum. I love those days.

Ruthie

nonvegan said...

What if smoo eats the rubber pencil topping!!!!

Barley flour muffins. Gross!

not neat freak said...

Interesting facts that your reader has about peanut allergy stats! In my school of only 220 children we have 6 children with peanut allergies and they all carry epipens. We have extra epipens in the office in case. Other schools I have been in have at least 4 cases, so does that mean we have more suseptable people here? Just heard on t.v. that 15 people in Canada die of this every year. As I alerted to earlier having the smell in a lunch room can set off an attack, so peanut free tables wouldn't necessarily work. As for lawsuits against schools that are looking out for the child's health, that sounds ridiculous to me. Life over death is all I can say.

Anonymous said...

Whats the recipe for the peanut butter muffins?

Jennifershmoo said...

It's going into my upcoming cookbook. :-)

AMJ217 said...

Anyone know a calorie content for the PB and J muffins? I made them today...and they rock! Just curious.

I used reduced fat PB&J.

Is there an online calculator?
Thanks!
Alicia

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