Sausage, Apple & Veggie Buckwheat Muffins
I’ve mentioned before on here that I’m working on a toddler/family style cookbook (still a WAYS out) but in the process I’ve done a lot of personal research, interviews with holistic doctors and a ton of reading to gather an approach to feeding tiny, rapidly growing humans that resonates with me and my family’s values and relationship to food. For me personally, that’s raising my children to be mindful of where their food comes from and support the efforts of our community farmers. For you, your values may be different and I’m hoping to meet families in the middle and offer practical, nourishing meal ideas that people from all walks of life can easily whip up and enjoy.
Regardless of what and how you want to feed your family I’ve learned something really important on my journey to feeding my toddler and it’s the “FFP” approach and it has been a GAME CHANGER!! “Ffp” stands for fat, fiber and protein. So every meal (or snack) should include those three things. This has actually been such a game changer for me as a mom when I incorporate this into our meals and snacks. My daughter’s mood and energy level is consist and she is more satisfied and less hungry in-between meals. And dammit if it didn’t take me 38 years to figure this one out for myself! I feel so much better when I make sure my meals are rounded out like this. I’m sure many of you have been doing this forever, but I’ll be the first to admit that I considered a bowl of oatmeal and berries a sufficient enough breakfast for years. Turns out that’s fine if I add a huge dollop of grass-fed butter and a big scoop of protein rich greek yogurt to my berry porridge to fit the “FFP” bill. And when I do that I’m not starving or feel irritable an hour later like I used to be.
These muffins are a great example of a nourishing, tasty, and portable meal that fits the “FFP” protocol. I love savory muffins because they really can become a meal of their own (though we usually serve these with a side of scrambled eggs and sliced pears for breakfast). But if you’re in a rush or need something to pack in a school lunch these are perfect! We use local sausage that doesn’t have any preservatives in it (you can do the same just looking at the ingredients list on your sausage) and load these muffins up with spinach and diced apple (we’re still eating apples from last fall and since they’re not quite as crunchy as they used to be, adding them to baked goods is a great way to use them up!) The apple lends a very faint and lovely sweetness that pairs well with the sausage and veggies. The buckwheat adds a nutty flavor and plenty of fiber to go along with the veggies and the protein rich sausage makes for a complete mini meal. These freeze beautifully and the only thing you have to plan for is to soak your grains the evening before baking (soaking is an important step at helping to make the grains easier to digest and more nutrient dense.) Anyhow, I hope you and your family love these muffins as much as we do.
Happy baking everyone!
Sausage, Apple & Veggie Buckwheat Muffins
Prep Time: overnight Cook Time: 20 minutes Serves: 12 muffins
- 3/4 cup buckwheat flour
- 3/4 cup millet flour (See note)
- 1/2 cup amaranth flour (see note)
- 1 1/4 cups whole milk plain yogurt (we used goat milk yogurt but you can use any kind)
- 1/2 pound pork sausage
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- pinch of ground nutmeg
- pinch of salt
- 3 cups spinach
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
- 1 cup finely diced apple
- The evening before baking, mix your flours with the yogurt and place in a warm spot in your kitchen. Cover with a towel. (see note)
- The next morning preheat your oven to 350F. Grease a standard 12 cup muffin tin and set it aside (or use muffins liners)
- In a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat add your sausage, thyme, pepper flakes, nutmeg and salt. Use a wooden spoon to break it up a bit and cook until lightly browned and cooked through. Use a slotted spoon to remove the sausage to a paper towel lined plate. Reserve 1 Tablespoon of the drippings and add the spinach. Cook until the spinach is wilted. Remove from the heat. (If serving this to a young toddler, dice up the spinach so it's easier to eat).
- Add the baking soda and salt to the bowl with the dough and mix. Add the eggs and olive oil and then fold in the cooked sausage, spinach, cheddar and apples. The mixture will be a bit "gummy" and that's totally fine.
- Fill the prepared muffin tin with the batter and bake until lightly browned and cooked through. About 20-22 minutes.
- Store the muffins in the fridge for up to 5 days. Reheat before enjoying and smear with a dollop of grass fed butter for good measure. If sending these off to school, they'll be fine stored at room temperature for a few hours after you pull them from the fridge and they'll taste great that way!
Notes*If you don't have millet or amaranth flour, you can make up the difference with all-purpose flour. It's important to soak the flour in the yogurt the evening before to help break down the phtyic acid in the grains. This step helps to make the grains more easily digested and nutritious. If you can find sprouted grains you can skip the soaking process.