Pumpkin Banana Muffins

Add some pumpkin to your normal banana muffins for a fun twist on a classic recipe. :)

Pumpkin Banana Muffins | thepajamachef.comWhen you move, you often have a lot of food to use up so you don’t have to haul it across town. Or is that just me? Soooo I hope you can bear with me as I talk about pumpkin in May. I love it year round, and hope a lot of you do too! Ha!

Pumpkin Banana Muffins | thepajamachef.comAs you know if you’ve ever read my blog, I love muffins. SO much. I almost always have them wrapped in sandwich bags to add to our work lunches–it’s so handy. And since I try to make most of my muffins on the healthier side, it’s a fun good-for-you pseudo-dessert to enjoy during the work day. I’m sure some nutritionists/dieticians might disagree with me on this… but heyyy I like my muffins and I’m not ashamed of it. :) Muffins aren’t ever filling enough for a normal breakfast, but they are a great lunchbox addition or snack. I know these muffins don’t look like much, but they taste great. Like their name implies, they’re a cross between banana and pumpkin muffins. Neither flavor overwhelms, and both flavors go great with pumpkin pie spice. I love making muffins with lots of fruit and/or spice so you don’t have to have tons ‘o sugar to get tons ‘o flavor. I know this is a recipe I’ll turn to again and again since I always have brown bananas on hand, and come fall, will have half empty cans of pumpkin to use up. If you want to spice these up a bit, feel free to stir in some sliced almonds or mini chocolate chips. Mmm! Enjoy!

two years ago: Apple Cream Chicken
three years ago: Pork Chops with Balsamic Blackberry Salad + Orzo

Pumpkin Banana Muffins

  • Servings: 12-16
  • Time: 30 minutes
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adapted from Simmworks Family Blog

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all purpose or white whole wheat flour
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2-3 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 medium bananas, mashed
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray muffin tins with cooking spray or line with paper liners. Set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and pumpkin pie spice.

In a smaller bowl or measuring cup, whisk together bananas, pumpkin, oil, eggs, and vanilla, until fully combined.

Add wet mixture to dry mixture, gently folding until combined. Divide batter between prepared muffin cups, then bake for 13-15 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Ricotta Pancakes

Delicate, melt-in-your mouth pancakes are made fluffy and delicious with ricotta, orange, and cinnamon. These fancy pancakes shouldn’t be missed!

Ricotta Pancakes | thepajamachef.com #breakfastThere’s pancakes and there is pancakes. These pancakes are pancakes, if you know what I mean. They’re light and fluffy, but also doughy and satisfying at the same time. The secret ingredient that makes ’em that way is in the title–ricotta!

Ricotta Pancakes | thepajamachef.com #breakfastIt’s a rare occasion that I have leftover ricotta, but I just so happened to have a half cup or so left from a pasta recipe I tried and I didn’t want it to go to waste. That would be so sad! I wanted to try baking with ricotta, but breakfast sounded better… so pancakes it was! I’ve made greek yogurt pancakes and sour cream pancakes before and honestly, the texture is pretty similar. The batter is thick but the pancakes cook beautifully and aren’t tough at all. My recipe uses a liberal amount of orange zest/juice and a touch of cinnamon for a pop of flavor, but you really can flavor these however you’d like–another type of citrus, perhaps, or some fresh berries, or chocolate… Mmm! The possibilities are endless. If I were you, I’d try them out this weekend. :) I would, but I’ll be busy moving. Wish me luck! :)

Ricotta Pancakes | thepajamachef.com #breakfast

one year ago: Blueberry Multigrain French Toast Bake
two years ago: Maple Berry Overnight Oats
three years ago: Cinnamon Carrot Muffins
four years ago: Springtime Linguine

Ricotta Pancakes

  • Servings: 2-3
  • Time: 30 minutes
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from Running to the Kitchen

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • zest of 1 orange
  • pinch of cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1 egg
  • juice of 1/2 an orange
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted [or oil]
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • butter or oil, for cooking
  • maple syrup or powdered sugar, for serving

Directions:

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat.

In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, orange zest, cinnamon, and salt. In a smaller bowl, whisk together milk, ricotta, egg, orange juice, butter, maple syrup, and vanilla. Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour in wet ingredients. Gently stir until just combined.

When skillet is hot, grease with oil or butter. Spoon batter in 1/4 cup increments on skillet, spreading if necessary. Cook for 1-2 minutes per side, until golden brown.

Serve with additional maple syrup or powdered sugar.

Mystery Dish: Pineapple Scones

Sweet, tropical pineapple scones… with smooth coconut and crunchy cashews, these are a treat you won’t be able to resist!

Pineapple Scones... a tropical treat with crunchy cashews, smooth coconut, and sweet pineapple in every bite! Find the recipe on thepajamachef.com

This month for Mystery Dish, Kristi at Inspiration Kitchen was our host and she challenged us to use three ingredients from this fabulous list: apricots, asparagus, vidalia onions, fennel/tarragon, chicken, puff pastry, coconut, cashews, chocolate, and pineapple. I’m a fruit girl at heart, and there’s nothing I love more than a big bowl of fresh pineapple. Feels like summer to me! So when I saw pineapple on that list, I KNEW it would be front and center in my recipe. I had all sorts of ideas, but finally landed on the idea of a quick and tasty scone.

Pineapple Scones... a tropical treat with crunchy cashews, smooth coconut, and sweet pineapple in every bite! Find the recipe on thepajamachef.com

I know you might be thinking… pineapple? In a scone? Is she crazy? I have to admit I was skeptical too. Pineapple seems too… wet or something to be baked like this. But truly, these are some of the best scones I’ve ever made. They are sweet but not cloyingly so, light and airy with just a bit of crunch from the coconut and cashews. Tropical flavors at their best! On a whim, I stirred in some Lightly Dried Ginger that I received from Gourmet Gardens as part of the #HotSummerEats blogging event I’m joining this summer. And as I suspected, ginger + pineapple + coconut + cashews = heaven. Enjoy!

Pineapple Scones... a tropical treat with crunchy cashews, smooth coconut, and sweet pineapple in every bite! Find the recipe on thepajamachef.com

one year ago: Chili Lime Popcorn
two years ago: Banana Chocolate Chip Cake with Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting
three years ago: Lemon Orzo Chicken Soup

Pineapple Scones

  • Servings: 16
  • Time: 30 minutes
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from Land O Lakes

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, cold and cubed
  • 1/4 cup crushed pineapple, drained [reserve juice]
  • 2-3 tablespoons reserved pineapple juice
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon grated ginger – or lightly dried ginger from Gourmet Garden
  • 1/2 cup sweetened coconut + more for sprinkling
  • 1/3 cup chopped cashews

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silpat.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and brown sugar. Cut in butter with pastry blender or two knives until flour mixture resembles coarse crumbs. In a small bowl, whisk together pineapple, 2 tablespoons juice, and eggs. Fold wet ingredients into dry and stir until just combined.

Knead dough in bowl a few times, incorporating a little more flour or pineapple juice depending on how wet/dry the dough is [I had to add an extra tablespoon of pineapple juice]. Dough will be sticky.

Divide dough in half, then pat each half into a circle. Cut each circle into 8 wedges [or 6 if you want them a bit bigger]. Do not separate as dough puffs during baking. Sprinkle dough with additional coconut. Bake for 13-15 minutes, increase oven temperature to 500 degrees for last 30-45 seconds of baking to toast coconut further if desired.

Allow scones to cool a few minutes, then cut wedges to separate into individual scones. Enjoy warm!

Check out what my other Mystery Dish pals made this month!

Pineapple Cake from I Dig Pinterest

Tropical Chicken Tacos from Inspiration Kitchen

Honey Pineapple Chicken Teriyaki Skillet from Flavor the Moments

Chicken Alfredo Bacon Pastry Pockets from Simply Gloria

Ricotta Asparagus Tart from Yummy Healthy Easy

Pineapple Scones from The Pajama Chef

Disclosure: I received an assortment of herbs from Gourmet Garden to try as part of my participation in the #HotSummerEats blogging event, coming this summer. I was not compensated in any other way, and am not required to publish positive comments. My opinions are my own.

SRC: Mini Egg Quiches

These adorable mini egg quiches are easy to make and full of great flavor! 

Mini Egg Quiches | thepajamachef.com

This month for SRC I was assigned to the fun blog, Living the Gourmet. This blog was started by Catherine in order to pass recipes down to her children. Aww! Her daughter, Tammy, contributes recipes and son Michael does reviews and interviews for the blog. It’s truly a family affair! When I was looking through the archives, I found several tempting choices, including Feta and Jalapeno Corn Muffins, French Apple Tart, and these Mini Egg Quiches! Obviously… quiche won. :)

Mini Egg Quiches | thepajamachef.com

These quiche are much easier to make than the traditional variety. The “crust” is merely sandwich bread. SO smart! And the filling is totally customizable, as all good egg/quiche dishes should be. Here I stuck with Catherine’s suggestions: Parmesan, sundried tomato, garlic, and herbs. I also threw in some spinach for good measure. Ben and I enjoyed these for a light dinner with smoothies, but I think they’d also be fantastic for brunch, breakfast, or even a snack. They’re portable, tasty, and cute! What more could you ask for? Enjoy!

Mini Egg Quiches

  • Servings: 10 mini quiches
  • Time: 35 minutes
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from Living the Gourmet

Ingredients:

  • 5-6 slices soft bread, edges trimmed [I used oatmeal bread]
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/4 cup sundried tomatoes, chopped [I used the dried ones from Trader Joe’s]
  • 1/4 cup spinach, chopped
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 scallions, diced
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley [I used dill]
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder [I accidentally left this out and they were fine]
  • freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

Grease 10 wells of a muffin tin with cooking spray. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Flatten bread with a rolling pin or your hands, then press it into the muffin wells, using about 1/2 of a slice for each. Bake the bread for 5-7 minutes, until just crisp. Remove from oven and let cool completely.

In a medium bowl, whisk eggs. Fold in tomatoes, spinach, Parmesan, sour cream, garlic, scallions, parsley, baking powder, and pepper.

Divide the egg batter between the muffin wells. Bake for 25-30 minutes until set.

To see what my other Secret Recipe Club pals made this month, check out the links below!

SRC: French Toast Casserole

French Toast Casserole is a great treat to wake up to! 

French Toast Casserole | thepajamachef.com #src #breakfast

Yay SRC! This is my second month participating in SRC group C and once again I had a blast! This month I was assigned to Jess’ blog, Pumpkins and Peonies. Two things I love! :) Jess’ blog is beautiful and her love of life, pretty things, and delicious baked goods is SO apparent. Her wedding pictures are gorgeous too! I was tempted by many of Jess’ recipes including these Deep Dark Chocolate Chunk Muffins, S’mores Cookies, and Popovers. In the end though, I decide to go with French Toast Casserole, because when is french toast wrong?!? Mmm!

French Toast Casserole | thepajamachef.com #src #breakfast

Jess made me fall in love with this French Toast Casserole when she said it was perfect… not too wet, not too dry, not too sweet. I’m sure you’ve had french toast that falls into any [or all] of those three categories, and this recipe does NOT disappoint! It’s practically foolproof too. I love simple recipes. :)

French Toast Casserole | thepajamachef.com #src #breakfast

The original recipe suggested using brioche or challah, but I used Texas toast and am happy to report that was an awesome choice. I just felt like it so I went with it. It’s still a soft, white bread so it works well, but use whatever you please.

French Toast Casserole4

This french toast bakes up nice and soft, with a sugary crust on the bottom and a nice crisp topping. Jess used pecans to top her french toast, but I just left them off. And this may go without saying, but this french toast makes weekend mornings even BETTER than they usually are. You can assemble the casserole the night before, and wake up and have breakfast on the table in less than an hour. Perfect-o! Enjoy! And thanks, Jess, for the great recipe!

one year ago: Tasty Mexican Lentils
two years ago: Quick Chocolate Pudding
three years ago: Alice’s Vanilla Tea-Infused Granola
four years ago: Roasted Tomato & Black Bean Soup

French Toast Casserole

  • Servings: 12
  • Time: 1 hour + overnight
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from Pumpkins and Peonies

Ingredinets:

  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 loaf brioche or challah, sliced [or I used Texas toast!]
  • 8 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 cup pecans, chopped [I left these out]
  • maple syrup, for topping
  • powdered sugar, for topping
  • fresh fruit, for serving

Directions:

Grease a 9×13 inch baking dish.

In a small bowl, whisk together butter and brown sugar. Pour mixture into bottom of baking dish.

Arrange bread on top of brown sugar mixture, overlapping as needed.

In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, vanilla, cinnamon, and ginger. Pour over bread slices, then sprinkle on pecans if using. Cover with foil or plastic wrap, and refrigerate at least 4 hours or overnight.

When ready to bake, remove pan from refrigerator and let rest at room temperature for 10 minutes while preheating the oven to 350 degrees. Bake for 30-35 minutes, covering with foil partway through if the top starts browning too much. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving with maple syrup, powdered sugar, or fruit.

Be sure to check out what else my SRC pals made this month: