Apple Kale Muffins Recipe. All Variations Including Savory

Kale muffins for dessert?

Did I just say this? Am I losing it or something? Nonono! Repeat: Kale muffins for dessert! My last (this) tinkering was a triumph! Seriously, think about it: Carrot cake, pumpkin cake, sweet potato cookies, rice cakes …. Why can’t kale muffins be next? This is real food, so go ahead and splurge, and hide them well from the kids, they might just wipe them out, and you might end up with a fantastic problem. Funky, nourishing and delicious: I have already tried my kale muffins on some kids: Not only did they love’em, but they got an added kick from the green color. I think I will make a batch for my grandchildren this Shabbos. And as always when I tinker with outrageous stuff, I’m not saying the K word till after dessert: You’ll create a sensation! by the way you can make them with baby spinach leaves too.

Who knew kale could be so delicious, in addition to being so nutritious? Read this link on Kale, from wellbeingsecrets.com, which gives you the whole scoop on kale, complete with delicious kale-based, dishes, three of them mine!

You’ll be amazed how elastic this recipe for kale muffins is!

This holds true for both and sweet and savory treats: Kale and apples are a great pairing, but take a look at all the variations at the bottom of the recipe.

Ingredients

  • 4 cups baby kale leaves
  • 3 granny smith apples, quartered
  • Peel of 1 lemon
  • 1 8 ounce container vegan cream cheese (health food stores)
  • 4 eggs
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 3 cups flour (all purpose, whole wheat pastry or spelt)
  • 2/3 cup golden raisins
  • ½ cup chopped nuts or seeds

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

In a food processor, process the first set of ingredients until smooth. Add the flour in 2 parts, pulsing each time only until combined. Fold in the raisins and the nuts with a spoon, right in the bowl of the food processor. Pour the batter into 11/2 dozen muffin molds (or 9x13 cake pan). Bake 45mn for muffins, 1 hour for cake, or a little longer, until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

Variations:

  • Kale Pumpkin Muffins: Replace the apples with 2 cups canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix), or 2 medium carrots or zucchini
  • Gluten-Free Muffins: Use Gluten-Free flour, in equal parts, and add 1 teaspoon xanthum gum (health food stores)
  • Replace the raisins with dried cranberries or other dried fruit, chopped
  • Savory muffins: With any of the variations above. In this case, just 3 tablespoons sugar, and no raisins, cinnamon or nuts. Add 1-2 cups of any of the following: frozen corn kernels, grated parmesan or other strong cheese, saute mushrooms etc... Likewise, spice it up any way you like, with oregano, red pepper flakes, cumin, etc...
  • Vegan Muffins: Egg-Free: skip the eggs. Use instead 1/4 cup ground flax seeds (also called flax meal, health food stores) mixed with 2/3 warm water
21 replies
  1. Nikki
    Nikki says:

    I have just made these with a variation and they are delicious so I thought I would share.
    I used coconut cream instead of the vegan cream cheese. Swapped the sugar with a 1/4 cup of honey and I added spirulina powder for some extra green goodness.
    Such a great recipe and good way to get greens into my toddler, thanks for sharing.

    Reply
    • Lévana
      Lévana says:

      Hi Cec, Oh gosh I have my vegan variations posted in so many places in my cookbooks and on my blog, I plain forgot to include it here as well. Thanks so much for pointing it out. I have just update the recipe with the egg-free variation, so it’s good to go! Do look in my blog: So many of my recipes for muffins and cookies come with a vegan variation. Here’s just one example and you’ll get an idea https://www.levanacooks.com/muffin-recipes-all-variations/

  2. Connie
    Connie says:

    The muffins are baking in the oven as I write this. If they are even half as good as the batter, they will be excellent.

    An observation: I have a family size but not industrial size food processor. Rather than cut the recipe in half, here is how I modified it.

    I first chopped the apples in the food processor. Then, using fresh kale, I gradually added the 10 ounces. Because my cuisinart was beginning to strain, I then added the soy-based vegetarian cream cheese (which I made from scratch), followed by two of the eggs and the grated lemon peel.

    Separately, I sifted the flour, sugar, salt, cinnamon and baking soda together.

    Next, in a large mixing bowl, I whipped the two remaining eggs. In equal portions, I added the sifted flour mixture and the kale/apple mixture and continued to blend them together. This was followed by 3/8 c of sunflowerand pumpkin seeds and 1/8 c flax seeds. Because I’m not a great fan of raisins, the final ingredient added to the mixture was 2/3 c chopped pecans.

    Using 2 greased and floured loaf pans, half the batter was put into each.

    The final product is absolutely scrumptious.

    My final suggestion: for smaller families, cut the entire recipe in half.

    Reply
    • Lévana
      Lévana says:

      Connie thank you so much for sharing every step.
      Now please share with me and my fans how you made the vegan cream cheese from scratch. I would LOVE to learn that!

  3. Gitta
    Gitta says:

    Levana, hi, and a happy new year to you! Can one use dairy cream cheese, instead of vegan (very hard to find in my area)? Thank u!

    Gitta

    Reply
  4. Helen Zegerman Schwimmer
    Helen Zegerman Schwimmer says:

    More…more…more…that’s what my 20 month old grandson kept repeating this morning as I doled out chunks of the kale muffins I baked last night! I was afraid to give him the whole muffin because I knew he would try to devour it completely. Good thing I made two dozen because everyone in the family had one and my son-in-law took a few to work with him. And the leftover kale? I Made your delicious chips. Once again you have taken a very plebian food and turned it into a delicacy. Thanks, Levana.

    Reply
    • Lévana
      Lévana says:

      Aren’t they the best? And they are like real food, and kids love them, I’ve had a dozen occasions to see that for myself ever since I posted my recipe. Kale rocks! There’s nothing I don’t do with it! Look in my book: burgers, soup, salad, you name it coxo

  5. Michele Degani
    Michele Degani says:

    Thank you so much for the recipe. I can’t wait to try these muffins. I’ve become a huge fan of kale and used it last night to make an enchilada sauce. It was so delicious and doesn’t even seem like we’re eating healty : )

    Reply

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