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Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Delish and Healthy! – Carrot and Zucchini Cookies & Zucchini Muffins


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When I first mentioned this healthy snack to my children I did not receive the reaction I had hoped for, a wrinkling of noses and the assertion that they would “never, ever, not-never “ eat anything containing the “scustulous zucchini”.
As a mother I try to incorporate healthy ways to give my children their daily dose of vegetables and make it pleasing to the palate but when we are out and about  it can be particularly challenging.
When I came up with this recipe I already knew my kids would not take to it right away but I also knew that once I started baking these delicious yet healthy cookies their curiosity would soon take over, I was right!  The overwhelming and delicious aroma of cinnamon and raisins enticed the smallest of my children first, then her older brother agreed to try “just a bite”.
Later that day I caught him sneaking more and the first dozen didn’t make through one day!
Happily  we all enjoy these cookies now and it’s a great way to fit a full half day of vegetables which is amazing & makes a welcome change from sandwiches for a day of hiking or at the beach.
With only three cookies they receive an abundant amount of vegetables while enjoying the sweet tastes of cinnamon, raisins and sugar.  If you’re looking for something to help you get your little ones to eat more vegetables try this recipe, they are irresistible!
Here Is What You Need:
  • 3/4 cup margarine
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1-1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup shredded zucchini
  • 1/2 cup shredded carrots
  • 2-1/2 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
*NOTE I also add a couple of handful of walnuts for extra protein and Omega 3 & replace a couple of ounces of flour with ground flax
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Cream margarine and sugar in a large bowl.
  3. Add egg and vanilla, mixing thoroughly.
  4. Mix shredded zucchini and carrots.
  5. Combine remaining ingredients in a separate bowl.
  6. Add these dry ingredients to the large bowl, stirring until well combined.
  7. Drop teaspoons of dough approximately 2 inches apart onto greased cookie sheet.
  8. Bake 10-12 minutes.
The best part about this recipe is you can over time start to dwindle down the amount of sugar making this an even healthier snack, by simply sprinkling some sugar on top of the cookies before you bake them the first initial taste your children will notice is sugar.  Cutting the sugar back in the recipe shouldn’t be noticeable to your kids so try it out, you may find that they like it just as much as the last batch.
***Sorry the cookies didn’t last long enough to photograph!
I did a batch of muffins though that went down equally well and travel even better
Zucchini-Raisin Muffins
Makes one dozen
This is one of our favorite instead-of-a-sandwich muffins. If you won’t be using the whole batch within a couple of days, pop some in the freezer for later use.
  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1/4 cup wheat germ
  • 1/2 cup natural granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup organic vanilla low-fat yogurt or soy yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons light vegetable oil
  • 1 cup firmly packed grated zucchini
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts, optional
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. zuccini muffin p
Combine the first 6 (dry) ingredients in a mixing bowl. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the yogurt and oil. Stir together until smoothly combined. Stir in the zucchini, raisins, and optional walnuts.
Divide the batter between 12 muffin tins and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the tops are golden and a small knife inserted in the center of a muffin tests clean. Cool on a rack. Wrap well in plastic wrap to send in a lunch box.
Do you have any healthy sweet snacks full of vegetables you like to make your kids? Tell us about it!

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