Whole Grain Maple Yogurt Muffins [California Dairy Contest]

[I received a gift card to offset the expense of my ingredients. By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by the California Milk Advisory Board and am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.]

Would anyone object to declaring Monday as MUFFIN MONDAY? Yes? No? Need some convincing? Well after this post, you may just be on board. :)

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI recently had some MAJOR success in the muffin making department and it’s been killing me that I’ve had to keep it under wraps until now! See, last month as apart of the Recipe Redux group that I’m apart of I received an email that the Real California Milk council would be holding a recipe contest at the beginning of March! The only requirement was that the recipe had to include a product with the Real California Dairy seal. Easy enough, right? And it gave me great incentive to get in the kitchen and start experimenting with some creativity! So I signed up and received a fun package from CA Dairy that included a really nice spatula as well as a gift card for buying ingredients for my recipe! OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I am a total dairy lover so I was itching to get brainstorming on how I could cook in a unique way with a dairy product. Cheese (of all kinds!) , cottage cheese, and yogurt are staples in my diet but for my recipe I wanted to use one of them in a way that you typically wouldn’t think of. I wanted to steer away from yogurt parfaits, cheesy pizzas, or cottage cheese protein pancakes. Been there, seen that, done that. So what to make?!

Well after going through the list of Real California Dairy approved brands, I got an idea! I saw that Brown Cow Dairy was an approved brand and I had remembered seeing some awesome flavored yogurts at my local grocery store…particularly THIS ONE….
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMAPLE CREAM TOP YOGURT?! It can’t get any better! Usually I’m a plain yogurt gal…but this combo just sounded too good to pass up! Creamy rich yogurt combined with sweet maple syrup? Heaven. In fact, only 2 of the yogurts are used for the recipe I came up with…the third one was ALL MINE. :)
So what did I make?! Well, knowing yogurt is sometimes used to replace ingredients in baked goods, I decided to make it the star ingredient of a new muffin recipe! March is National Nutrition Month and part of the recipe challenge is to “lighten up” a breakfast, lunch, dinner, side dish, snack, appetizer or dessert by using a dairy product! So what better way to make a healthy muffin recipe than by swapping out some of the traditional ingredients with protein packed, calcium rich yogurt? It adds amazing flavor and makes the muffins INCREDIBLY moist. I know, I know…people hate that word. But in this case it’s appropriate!
The maple combined, with toasted walnuts, hearty whole grains, and other simple, healthy ingredients makes for muffin packed with flavor, fiber, protein, and soul filling goodness!
So check out what we’re working with.



Whole Grain Maple Yogurt Muffins

by Healthy Helper

Keywords: bake snack breakfast dessert soy-free vegetarian


Ingredients (12 BIG muffins)

  • 2 1/3 cup spelt flour
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • ½ cup apple sauce
  • 2 6 ounce containers of California maple yogurt  (like Real California Yogurt from Brown Cow)
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup walnuts


Beat together wet ingredients. Once mixed, stir in dry ingredients (except walnuts). Fold in walnuts. Divide batter among 12 muffin tins (mostly filled to the top). Bake for 18 minutes at 400 degrees. Store in the refrigerator or on the counter and eat within 3-4 days!

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These muffins came out HUGE! A lot bigger than I was expecting! In fact you could probably double the amount of muffins you make if you want smaller ones. But hey! I’m not complaining. The bigger the muffin top, the better. Fresh out of the oven…


Normally I refrain from using ‘porn’ and ‘food’ in the same sentence…but I think this occasion calls for it. Get ready for some muffin porn!



So did I convince ya? Muffin Monday for the win? I think yes.
Have you ever baked with yogurt before?
What’s your favorite type of muffin?
Did you know it was National Nutrition month?
It’s been 24 hours since I announced the winner of my giveaway (and emailed them!), so per my giveaway policy I have chosen another winner! Head on over to the giveaway post to see if it’s you!!


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Todays’s Healthy Help: Helped my mom reorganize the bathroom after we had some work done on it!

Never too early to start Lending a {Healthy} Hand for this week’s round-up! Tell me what you’ve done to help someone else lately!


Recipe Redux: Fruit & Almond Milk Power Bowls

[Reminder: Lend a {Healthy} Hand is on hiatus this week due to scheduling conflict with the Recipe Redux monthly link up! But it'll be back in full force next Friday! In the meantime, keep up with your #healthyhelp and remember how important it is to incorporate daily acts of kindness into each day!]

Don’t worry! You’re not in the wrong place! If you didn’t catch my announcement yesterday, Healthy Helper has a new look! So happy with it and I really appreciate all the feedback and advice you all have already given me on it!

Today it’s time for my 5th installment of the Recipe Redux monthly round up! I really enjoy partaking in this recipe link up each month as it really challenges my creativity in the kitchen and forces me to take some time out to experiment with new dishes, ingredients, and meal components!

This month’s theme proved to be especially challenging as I am not much of a drink maker!

Beverages Are Hot - That which is served in a mug, glass, or stein is becoming just as interesting as what’s on the plate. New cocktail-only blogs are emerging. Pinners are cooking with their Keurig K-cups. Hot beverages have gone way beyond hot cocoa. Beverages are in! Whether you’re serving something hot or cool, kid-friendly or happy hour worthy, show us your healthier drink.

But I put my thinking cap on and decided to do my only sort of twist on February’s beverage theme. Instead of creating a new beverage (I wanted to steer away from the typical smoothie or hot drink recipe), I decided to highlight one of the most unique ways I USE something that is normally reserved for drinking….ALMOND MILK!

Almond milk is a total staple in my diet and I absolutely love its creamy texture and taste! Plus it’s full of great nutrients and is fortified with calcium so that it actually contains more than regular cows milk!


I often feature almond milk-fruit bowls in my WIAW posts and I get asked all the time how I assemble them and what exactly goes in them. So that’s what the focus of today’s post is….how to build the ultimate Fruit & Almond Milk Power Bowl!






Fruit & Almond Milk Power Bowl

by Healthy Helper

Keywords: snack sugar-free


Ingredients (1 serving)

  • fruit of choice (apple, pear, or oranges are my favorites), diced and chopped
  • 1 cup almond milk (or milk of choice)
  • 1-2 tbsp protein powder (I use whey)
  • 1-2 tbsp coconut or chestnut flour
  • 1/2-1 tbsp cocoa or carob powder
  • 1/4 cup frozen fruit (blueberries or chopped strawberries are my favorite!)
  • a heft shake of cinnamon
  • a few tbsps of other mix-ins: freeze dried fruit, nuts, seeds, whey crunchies, extra fruit, flax seed, cereal, granola, chopped protein bars, crumbled baked goods


Chop base layer of fruit into small bite sized pieces and place in a bowl. Next add frozen fruit and almond milk. On top of that, layer flour of choice, protein powder, cocoa, cinnamon, and other mix-ins. Dig in!

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The stages of Power Bowl building…


Some of my favorite combos…

orange slices//cocoa//crumbled brownie//whey crunchies//cinnamon//almond milk

orange slices//freeze dried tangerines//cocoa//whey protein//whey crunchies//almond milk

pear//blueberries//Cafe Mocha Amazing Grass//whey crunchies//cinnamon//almond milk

pear//blueberries//Crunchies Mixed Fruit//coconut flour//cocoa//cinnamon//almond milk

apple//strawberries//chestnut flour//whey protein//cocoa//whey crunchies//cinnamon//almond milk

Another fun twists is letting your almond and fruit freeze together a bit before adding the rest of your toppings! Just place the whole bowl in the fridge for about 10-15 minutes and you get a nice, ICE COLD, slightly icey Power Bowl base! Delicious and great for a fun dessert!

Let me know if you try making your own Power Bowl! I’d love to see some pictures on Instagram! Use the hashtag #powerbowl and make sure to tag me @healthyhelper !!

What’s your favorite unique use for a beverage?

What beverages do you drink on a daily basis?

Where does your milk allegiance lie? Cow’s or alterna-milk?

Have a great weekend, friends!


Subscribe on the side. Follow me on TwitterAsk me on Formspring. Follow me on PinterestLike me on Facebook.Follow me on Instagram.

Todays’s Healthy Help: Helped my mom prep some food for my sister’s wedding shower tomorrow night!!

Never too early to start Lending a {Healthy} Hand for next week’s round-up! Tell me what you’ve done to help someone else lately!