The Bran Muffin Recipe This Nutritionist Swears By

Add protein and fiber to your breakfast with this nutritionist-approved recipe for healthy bran muffins, without excess fat and sugar.

Are bran muffins healthy?

When you think of bran muffins, you probably think that’s a healthy breakfast, right? But that is rarely the case. A bran muffin can have 300 calories or more, a lot of added sugar and a lot of butter and sodium. And that’s not even the extra butter you probably put on the bran muffin.

A nutritionist-approved bran muffin recipe

Just because a muffin contains bran doesn’t mean it’s good for you. So we chatted with registered dietitian Julia Robarts, RDN, based in Boston, about how to make a healthy yet delicious bran muffin. You can scroll all the way down to see her recipe for old-fashioned bran muffins.

Each muffin has 240 calories and can be the start of a balanced breakfast. “This recipe is lower in fat and sugar while still rocking that classic bran muffin flavor,” says Robarts.

To be precise, this dietitian-approved muffin contains just 1.5 grams of saturated fat and 14 grams of sugar. About half of that is added sugar. Robarts lowers the sugar content with additives such as unsweetened applesauce, raisins and cinnamon. “Although these muffins have less sugar than a typical muffin, you definitely won’t miss it,” she says. (You can definitely taste the natural sweetness in this healthy banana muffin recipe.)

A healthy bran muffin provides fuel

This bran muffin has 5 grams of protein and 4 grams of fiber, both nutrients that will keep you fueled for longer. “A healthy bran muffin recipe provides a good dose of fiber, while not going overboard with sugar or fat,” says Robarts. “This bran muffin gets its significant fiber count from wheat bran and whole wheat flour, as well as walnuts and raisins. The protein comes from a combination of milk, wheat, and walnuts.”

“The ingredients should contain whole grains such as wheat bran and whole wheat flour, along with blackstrap molasses for an authentic taste,” adds Robarts.

However, the molasses is not just for the taste, it also provides nutrition. “The muffin is a good source of iron, thanks to the blackstrap molasses,” she adds. Iron is an important nutrient that helps provide oxygen to various parts of your body. The bran muffin is also a good source of bone-building calcium.

The benefits don’t stop there. “The fiber and cinnamon both support proper blood glucose control, while the walnuts contribute health-promoting antioxidants,” says Robarts. Don’t miss these other healthy muffin recipes that are also packed with nutrients.

A balanced breakfast

How do you eat a nutritious bran muffin? “The deep, rich flavors of a bran muffin are the perfect complement to cold brew coffee,” says Robarts. “I wanted to make a recipe with a taste that rivals that of commercially prepared bran muffins, but that gets your morning off to a great start by delivering all the flavor, fiber and protein without excess fat and sugar.”

To balance the muffin with enough protein to fuel your morning, consider pairing it with a few hard-boiled eggs. Round out your meal with a healthy Pumpkin Spice Latte.

Make the muffin even healthier

If you are salt sensitive or on a low sodium diet, you can experiment by slightly reducing the amount of added salt in this recipe. Check out the best and worst breakfasts for weight loss.

Healthy bran muffin recipe

Thanks to Julia Robarts

For 12 muffins

Ingredients:

  • Cooking spray, if needed
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 cup blackstrap molasses
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 cup + 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 cup wheat bran
  • 1 1/2 cups whole-wheat puff flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Travel directions:

Preheat the oven to 400 F. Place the rack in the center of the oven. Prepare a standard muffin tin by coating each well with a generous layer of spray oil, or by lining each well with a cupcake liner. Put aside. In a medium bowl, add brown sugar, molasses, applesauce, milk, eggs, and oil. Stir with a whisk or large spoon until well blended.

In a separate bowl, combine wheat bran, flour, baking soda, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and cloves. Stir with a fork until well mixed. Pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Stir everything together until all dry ingredients are incorporated. Do not overmix. Fold in the raisins and walnuts. Fill each well about 80 percent full. Sprinkle the tops with a few raisins and walnuts, if desired. Bake for 18-20 minutes.

The muffins are ready when the top is no longer wet and set. Be sure to check for doneness by touch as the batter is dark brown and so it is difficult to see doneness at first glance. Let the muffins rest in the tin for a few minutes before removing them to cool further on a wire rack.

Nutritional value per serving:

Cal: 240 Fat: 13 g Sat Fat: 1.5 g Pro: 5 g Carbohydrate: 29 g Sugar: 14 g Fiber: 4 g Chol: 35 mg Sod: 280 mg

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