December and January are probably my two favourite months of the whole year - but they seem to whizz by in a flash!
They're the most social months of the year with kids off school (at least in Australia), Christmas and New Year celebrations, summer barbeques and get togethers and time off work to enjoy.
With the month whizzing by so fast, I thought I'd share a make ahead recipe that will help you get through the busy days ahead. Whether you're heading back to work or the kids are going back to school, these savoury muffins are the perfect lunch option and an easy way to get extra veggies in (perfect for Mums looking for ideas for how to get kids to eat more vegetables!)
There's one problem though... they don't seem to last very long.
You see, I first made these for myself - only to have my Dad and Jesse spot them as they were baking away in the oven and they then subsequently nagged me until I gave them one to try.
I thought this was definitely going to be a recipe they turned their noses up at. They're filled with pumpkin, spinach and zucchini and usually vegetable filled recipes are the ones they're most skeptical about.
I relented and shared my beloved muffins only to hear my Dad call from upstairs...
".... yeah?" (let's be honest, I was expecting criticism...)
"You could make money on these"
"You could sell them. They're really, really good"
Okay, so we had one winner... but what about the fussy zucchini hating husband. He came inside and grabbed one and said "These are actually really good... I mean.. bad... I'll just have to have them all so you don't have to suffer".
One big batch of muffins disappeared in two days with the boys taking them for work lunches. I opened the fridge the next day to grab some for lunch and huh...
I really thought there was a container there. I moved things around in the fridge looking for my muffins only to find empty space. I looked on the bench, thinking I must have left them out the last time I got one and nothing. I opened the dishwasher and there was my empty container with not even a crumb remaining.
They're that good... so you might want to hide them 😉
So let me share the recipe with you! >>
Savoury Pumpkin Spinach and Feta Muffins Recipe
makes 12 regular muffins
low fat, gluten free, clean eating friendly, sugar free, healthy, nut free
~2 1/4 cups (350g) diced butternut squash/pumpkin
~125g frozen chopped spinach or 3 cups chopped fresh spinach
1 small zucchini, grated
1 cup milk
1 cup (100g) crumbled feta cheese
1/2 cup (50g) grated parmesan cheese or cheddar/tasty cheese
2 cups (240g) gluten free plain flour
4 tsp baking powder
Optional: Salt and pepper, to taste
- Cook your pumpkin cubes by either roasting in the oven until soft and caramelised, steaming until soft or microwaving for 4-5 minutes or until soft and cooked through.
- Place your frozen or chopped spinach in a bowl and cover with your hot cooked pumpkin.
- Cover with cling wrap and leave to sit whilst your oven preheats and you prepare your other ingredients.
- Preheat your oven to 180C/355F
- Grease a muffin tray or line with paper liners and set aside.
- Combine your eggs and milk and mix in your pumpkin, spinach, zucchini and cheeses. Season with salt and pepper if desired.
- Mix in your flour and baking powder, mixing until just combined.
- Scoop your muffin batter into your prepared muffin tin, filling all the way to the top (as the batter is thick it won't spill out).
- Bake your muffins for 20-30 minutes or until cooked through (a skewer inserted into the middle will remove clean and they'll feel solid when touched on the top) and golden on top.
- Allow to cool before removing your muffins from their tins and enjoying.
- These muffins can be eaten hot, room temperature or chilled depending on your preference and can be kept in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 2-3 days. These muffins also freeze well and can be frozen in airtight ziplock bags and defrosted to eat whenever you're ready.
But tell me, what's your favourite month of the year?
And what are your favourite make ahead recipes or work/school lunches?