Whole Wheat Strawberry Oatmeal Muffins

As I took my first bite into this warm, mushy, perfectly sweet yet delightfully subtle muffin, I thought to myself “How is it really possible that something so healthy can be this delicious?” Right then, I realized my answer. The fact that it’s healthy MAKES it delicious. Am I the only one in the world who feels this way? To me, food can only be fully enjoyable if I know it is doing something wonderful for my body. Obviously, once in a while it feels good to break your rules, but for the most part eating healthy is something I truly enjoy. Eating healthy is essentially my passion. There is no love greater than the love of food once you learn to appreciate it in its full spectrum. For this to happen, you must take into account all of its factors. One of these is the damage it will do to your waist line. (Don’t lie… everyone thinks about it!) Fortunately, these mouth-watering muffins are all kinds of good for you.

These aren’t just any strawberry muffins. If you’re an oatmeal lover, this recipe is perfect for you. The key is to chop up your strawberries and macerate them in balsamic vinegar to intensify the flavor, and then throw them into your oatmeal muffin mixture. Let’s start with the ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 cups old fashioned oats
  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • 1/2 pound strawberries
  • 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
  • 2/3 cup agave nectar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract (secret ingredient!)
  • 1 cup stone ground whole wheat flour
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon finely ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1. Mix the oats and plain yogurt in a large bowl.
2. In another small bowl, rinse the strawberries and chop them into fours. You should have about 1 1/2 cups of chopped strawberries. Sprinkle them with sugar and balsamic vinegar and let it sit for a little while after you stir.
3. Set your oven to 400 degrees.
4. In the large bowl with the yogurt and oatmeal, add the flower, baking soda, black pepper, and cinnamon, vanilla extract, and the almond extract.
5. Then, add the eggs, melted butter, and agave nectar. Mix that with a whisk until the mixture is soft but a bit lumpy. Do not over-mix!
6. Now, slowly mix in the balsamic strawberries. Mix gently.
7. You should have a greased muffin tin or a muffin tin with baking cups. Gently spoon in the mixture until you don’t have anymore. Bake them for about 25-30 minutes or until the tops are golden brown.

Yes, they tasted as delicious as they look! Enjoy this recipe without feeling guilty, and share!
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