When we decided to homeschool this year, one of the things that appealed to me was being able to do more “regular” life with our kids. I wanted to include them in the kitchen more and feel less rushed when teaching them things like how to crack an egg and scoop muffin batter into a tin.
On Friday, we took a “recess” and made these muffins together. I’d gone grocery shopping the night before and with a gigantic smile on my face, I bought my first can of pumpkin for this season. In the past we’ve grown pumpkins, but this year has been our transition summer without a garden. Gosh, I’ve missed digging in the dirt…but more on that another day. Regardless of if you have your own homegrown pumpkin puree or you’re a smile-as-you-open-up-a-can-kind-of-girl, you need to make these muffins. They taste like fall and since they’re loaded with pumpkin, carrot and almond flour, they’re actually pretty healthy!
So let’s look at this picture for a moment. See the wet chair and the towel on the floor? Moments before I took this, my 2 year old had been playing with the sink, while the other kids took turns stirring. I posted this picture on Instagram when I was having a “moment” feeling totally overwhelmed by the chaos going down in my kitchen. See, it’s one thing to want to cook with your kids and include them in everything, but when your kids are 6, 4 and 2, living this out comes with a certain amount of crazy. You do the right thing and include the kids, while reminding yourself of the Glennon Melton mantra “We Can Do Hard Things“. But then….after the muffins come out, you know it was so worth it, when the kids claim they’re the best they’ve ever had.
While we finished our school day, they ate almost the entire bowl. They made these just about 100% themselves and while it was crazy, messy and it took longer than if I would’ve just done it, they were so proud.
So, buy the pumpkin. Or go pick one, bake it, and puree it…do your thing and then bring your family into the kitchen and cook together. Memories aren’t all neat and tidy, in a clean little box with a nice perfect bow. Memories made in the kitchen are full of laughs, messes and feasting.
Paleo Pumpkin and Carrot Mini-Muffins
- 3 large eggs
- 4 medium carrots, grated and squeezed of juice (final volume: 1½ cups shredded carrots)
- 1½ cups almond flour
- 1½ teaspoons pumpkin spice
- 1 teaspoons baking soda
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ¾ cup canned pumpkin purée
- ½ cup local honey or pure maple syrup
- 1/4 cup melted butter or coconut oil
- Heat oven to 350°F with the rack in the middle position.
- Line muffin tin with muffin liners or grease well.
- Next, grate your peeled carrots by hand or in a food processor.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the almond flour, pumpkin spice, baking soda, ground cinnamon, and sea salt.
- In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs well.
- Mix in the pumpkin, honey, almond butter, and melted coconut oil.
- Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir until combined.
- Fold in the grated carrots.
- Scoop the batter evenly into the muffin tins, filling them about ¾ full.
- Bake for about 15-20 minutes (for mini muffins). 25-30 minutes for regular sized muffins.
- The muffins are done when a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean and the tops feel springy to the touch.
- Cool the tray on a rack for about 5 minutes and then pop the muffins out and completely cool them directly on the rack.