Strawberry Muffin Tops (Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Paleo)

As you all know, it is spring!

DSC_0221I haven’t been able to hide my excitement at all, but how could anybody? I mean, the sun is shining much more now, the wind isn’t bone-chilling, flowers are coming out, the trees are more colorful, there are beautiful dandelions popping up all over the place, and some of my favorite foods are in season (namely asparagus!), and I can actually bike around campus.  This also means it is strawberry season! In the spirit of spring, our dietetics association asked people to bake something with strawberries in it, and my sister and I decided: cupcakes! But then we thought muffins would be more easily transported, so we searched the interwebs for recipes and found a couple that we liked.  We went out and got all the necessary ingredients, but once we went to make them we realized we were lacking a key aspect of muffins: muffin tins.  Out of this situation were born the muffin tops.  They look deceivingly like cookies (and who doesn’t like cookies, especially gluten free ones?), until you pick it up and realize it is soft and spongy like a muffin would be if it were shaped the right way. And these are everything you would want in a muffin:

But not too sweet
A Flavorful
Combo of

And the best part is, you can eat a couple, and not feel like you have the weight of an entire muffin on your stomach.  (I can tell you from experience:  I biked to the gym for a hard workout right after I taste-tested a couple of these babies, and I didn’t feel weighed down a bit!)  No, the best part might be the sweet, baked strawberry smell that lingers in your house for the entire day after you make these.  I would make these again solely for that welcoming smell when you get back from a night at the library.   DSC_0215

Strawberry Muffin Tops (Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Paleo)
Adapted from Cook Eat Paleo‘s Recipe
Makes 24 small tops

2 cups almond flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
3 Eggs
1 Cup chopped strawberries
1/4 cup Honey
2 Tbsp Coconut Oil, melted
1 Tbsp Lemon juice
1 Tspn vanilla

1. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees F
2. Mix the dry ingredients and wet ingredients separately, minus the strawberries, before combining the two together. Add the strawberries last.
3.  Spoon about 1-2 tablespoons worth of batter onto a lined cookie sheet.  The dough should be be evenly spread in the size of a circle made by touching your thumb and forefinger together.
4.  Pop into the oven until the tops are a light gold, the bottoms turn a bit brown, and when they rise again after pressing gently on them. (About between 10-17 minutes)
5. Allow the muffin tops to cool for a few minutes, until they are at a tolerable to eat without burning your mouth! (Let me tell you, they smell good enough to eat straight out of the oven.  This step will be tough, so I caution you to eat at your own risk if you skip it)

If you want a more intense strawberry flavor, I would chop up the strawberries into smaller pieces or try to mash some up into the batter.  To make these vegan, I would try adding an egg replacer or some ground up flax or chia seeds, though the seeds might end up making them less fluffy and more dense.

DSC_0204These are immensely satisfying on the warm spring day, so I recommend you try them out for yourself! And you can be happy as happy as your gut for skipping out on the gluten and dairy. I hope you guys continue to enjoy your spring wherever you may be experiencing it, and remember that this is a time of rebirth, optimism, and new beginnings.  You can do anything you put your mind to, the only person stopping you is you!

Lots of Love,

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