My latest mini obsession: cinnamon! While working on this recipe for Paleo chocolate chip muffins (as well my Paleo chocolate chip cookie recipe, to be published soon), I found that cinnamon is the perfect compliment of flavor. Not only does it give a hint of a little extra something special and make these one my favorite baked goodies right now, but it also has many surprising health benefits.
Cinnamon has anti-inflammatory properties (it has been found to reduce pain associated with arthritis, as well as inflammation linked with neurological disorders), and it’s also believed to boost brain function. Cinnamon is anti-microbial (i.e. it helps fight infections), so much so that it is even used as a natural preservative in foods. Cinnamon is a powerful antioxidant; it helps regulate blood sugar and has been found to lower LDL cholesterol. It can help reduce risk factors associated with diabetes, cardiovascular disease and colon cancer (and possibly other cancers), and it is helpful in regulating some digestive functions, especially for those with IBS.
Using cinnamon along with my other usual ingredient favorites, such as coconut flour, coconut oil and honey, makes these muffins a guilt-free, indulgent Paleo treat. And these Paleo cinnamon chocolate chip muffins are so moist and delicious, they will be a favorite with even non-Paleo folk (like my hubby, who absolutely loves these!). So bake, eat and be merry:
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- ½ cup coconut flour
- 2 tsp organic ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- 4 pastured eggs (room temperature preferred)
- ¼ cup pure/raw honey, heaping
- ⅓ cup organic/unrefined coconut oil or grassfed butter, melted (use coconut oil for dairy-free option)
- ¾ cup full fat additive-free coconut milk (room temperature preferred)
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1 tsp raw apple cider vinegar
- ½ - ¾ cup allergen-free chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a standard size muffin tin with 9-10 liners (preferably unbleached, chlorine-free). (Note: if you find that the baked muffins stick to the liners, add a tiny drop of coconut oil to each liner before pouring in batter.)
In a medium bowl, mix coconut flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and sea salt.
In a separate large bowl, mix eggs, coconut oil (or grassed butter), honey, coconut milk, vanilla extract, and apple cider vinegar.
Slowly add dry ingredients into wet ingredients. (It may seem like a lot of liquid, but the coconut flour will eventually absorb it, and it is necessary to achieve an ideal texture.) Mix batter well (with a hand mixer, preferably). Let batter sit for about 5 minutes to allow liquid to absorb. Then mix again briefly.
Carefully fold in a little more than half of your chocolate chips. (Save the rest to sprinkle on top of muffin batter, as some might sink to the bottom.)
Pour batter into each muffin cup almost all the way to the top (this will produce about 9 muffins). Sprinkle remaining chocolate chips over the top of each unbaked muffin. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool and enjoy!
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator.