Banana breakfast muffins with a sweet, juicy caramel-y date baked right inside! Super easy and perfect for a quick, delicious breakfast on your way out the door. These pretty little vegan banana breakfast muffins with caramelized dates are gluten free and sweetened naturally!
So it’s Monday again, and I’m for sure over the cold. Though I really shouldn’t complain, because I can’t even imagine being not the east coast right now. I’m all cool with snow and slightly chilly temperatures up to Christmas since I think I could be classified as an elf for how much I love that time of year, BUT once the best day of the year is over and gone, dreary January takes over. I am literally cold almost all the time, so when it’s this freezing outside it’s hard for me to be my positive, cheery self! Plus training for a marathon requires long runs on weekends…12 miles when you can’t feel your face/fingers isn’t thaaat enjoyable.
But I try to be extra conscious and grateful for all of the amazing, wonderful things in my life and it makes the cold a lot more bearable 🙂 AND February is just around the corner which means v-day! I looove Valentine’s Day, call me cheesy or cliche or whatever, I just love getting to spoil Joe a little bit and all the cute colors/decor, obvi. Another way to get through the dreary January drag is baking up a batch of these banana breakfast muffins with caramelized dates for a quick, easy breakfast when you have to go out and scrape your windshield for the fifth straight morning.
These vegan banana breakfast muffins with caramelized dates are absolutely delish. The base is made with chickpea flour, which gives them a nice dense texture, since I wanted the muffins to be a little more hearty than they would be if made with oat flour (but if you don’t have chickpea, oat flour would definitely work!). Chickpea flour is just ground up chickpeas (or garbanzo beans), and it’s such a wonderful alternative for gluten free eaters or anybody trying to avoid processed, plain white flour (which should be everybody!). It has tons of health benefits including a boatload of fiber and plant based protein. The flour gets mixed with ground flaxseeds – this is a time saver for these muffins, as I tried them without making an actual flax egg. The batter held together fine, so we cut out the extra half hour of chilling a flax egg!
After the dry ingredients are mixed, three mashed bananas get mixed with unsweetened almond milk and applesauce. The bananas are super ripe and so, so sweet that you don’t need anything else added. It’s pure, banana goodness, just the way I like it! Trust me, you’ll see what I mean. But speaking of sweetness, I did stick some dates about halfway down into each muffin. I split a medjool date in half and gently pressed them into the batter once it was in the muffin cups. About half of the date was sticking out the top, and half was down in the batter. Honestly this was a last minute decision, as I saw some dates up on the shelf, and of course they had to go in because there’s never a wrong time for dates.
Unexpectedly, the dates literally turned to caramel in the oven. The tops that were exposed to the direct heat got super, super caramelized and sweet! Talk about a wonderful last minute addition. The inside part was still chewy and gooey, adding to the sweetness and giving a great contrast in texture to the dense, cake like muffins. Dates are seriously nature’s candy. Every time I eat them I get a little (really) overdramatic about how good they are, but so many people don’t even know what a date is and they’re sooo missing out! There are tons of varieties, but my go to is always medjool, and they’re easy to find at grocery stores. They MAKE these banana breakfast muffins, so get the good stuff and you’ll have sweet, candy-like goodness to snack on even when these muffins are gone. We’re (hopefully) almost done with winter, friends!!
If you try this recipe, let me know how it goes/what you think! Take a picture and tag me @beamingbanana on Instagram. Happy baking!