Spinach Banana Muffins are a healthy snack for kids and toddlers. Packed with vitamins, fiber and protein, this is a sneaky way to get picky kids to eat vegetables, in a snack that they will love! These muffins are freezer friendly and low in added sugar as well.
Healthy Spinach Banana Muffins for Toddlers and Kids
Healthy Muffins have been a go to snack for our family ever since I started making them when my son was a baby. They have always been a favorite snack for him, despite his picky eating. Over the years I have started adding in vegetables – like in my Carrot Banana Muffins and my Zucchini Banana Muffins. Even though my son won’t touch a vegetable on his plate, he still devours the muffins, even with the additional veggies.
Why we love these Spinach Banana Muffins
Whether you call them Green Smoothie Muffins, Hulk Muffins or Ninja Turtle Muffins, its a fun, easy and tasty way to get some spinach in to your kids (or your own!) diet. Not only that, but these healthy muffins are packed with protein from peanut butter and Greek yogurt and fiber from white whole wheat flour (or whole wheat pastry flour) and of course the spinach.
Spinach Blender Muffins made better
I have tried spinach blender muffins before and was always disappointed with how they turned out – tough, dry and rubbery. The problem? Muffins will get tough if they are at all overmixed – and blenders are made to mix things very quickly. It’s a bad combination. On the other hand, in order to completely blend spinach into a muffin, you really need to use a blender. After testing the recipe many times, I figured out how to blend the spinach into the muffin without overmixing the batter.
The method – blend the spinach, banana and milk in the blender until fully combined – just like a green smoothie. Then add it to the rest of the wet ingredients in a bowl and hand mix. Although it seems like it would be easier to just blend all the wet ingredients in the blender, that created too much air in the batter, which caused the muffins to deflate in the oven. After tons of testing, I concluded that this extra step is well worth it for the best spinach muffins.
Chocolate Chip Spinach Muffins
Just as we do in all my muffin recipes, we then mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and stir until just mixed. Then stir in the chocolate chips if using. The chocolate chips are optional. If you have a younger toddler or generally don’t want to add chocolate, you can leave them out. I knew my preschooler would be hesitant to eat a green muffin, so I threw the mini chocolate chips in just for extra insurance. And he loved them!
More Healthy Muffin Recipes
- 2 very ripe large bananas
- 3 ounces frozen spinach, thawed and moisture drained out 1 cup when still frozen
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- ¼ cup pure maple syrup
- 1/2 cup whole milk Plain Greek Yogurt
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 ¾ cups white whole wheat flour or whole wheat pastry flour
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cups Mini Chocolate chips, divided Reserve 1/4 cup to sprinkle on top of muffins
- Preheat oven to 425°F degrees. Line a 12-count muffin pan with muffin liners or spray with nonstick spray. Set aside.
- If using frozen spinach, thaw completely, then wrap in a kitchen towel and squeeze out as much extra moisture as possible.
- In a blender, add milk, spinach and bananas. Blend until completely smooth and no visible bits of spinach remain.
- In a medium bowl, add the maple syrup, yogurt, egg, peanut butter and vanilla. Pour in the spinach mixture. Stir until all ingredients are well combined. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, salt. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Add 1/2 cup of the chocolate chips and stir until just combined. Do not overmix the batter or you will have tough muffins.
- Evenly distribute the batter between the muffin cups. (I use an ice cream scoop for easy portioning). Sprinkle remaining chocolate chips on top of each muffin. Bake for 5 minutes at 425°F degrees. Keeping the muffins in the oven, reduce the oven temperature to 350°F and continue to bake for another 12 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- As soon as possible, remove muffins from the muffin pan and allow to cool on a cooling rack.