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Small Plates & Sweet Treats: Gluten-free Banana Carrot Pecan Muffins

Ooh-la-la…..awhile back I got a package delivered, in it was a copy of Small Plates and Sweet Treats: My Family’s Journey to Gluten-Free Cooking, from the Creator of Cannelle et Vanille:


I had won a giveaway that was hosted by Gluten Free Travelette on her blog, and the publisher sent me a copy of the book. I love what I see as “counter-top cookbooks”, which would be the modern version of “coffee-table books”. The ones with lush photography and great writing, that draw a reader in. This isn’t what I would consider every-day dining, but more special occasion. Recipes that will have the reader questioning what they thought gluten-free meant. The book has only one recipe containing xantham gum, which I found wonderful. I would agree with her stand on it, just not a big fan of it and guar gum in baking. The book is omnivore but not necessarily meat-centric. If anything, it is used in small amounts. The recipes are presented seasonally, showcasing fresh vegetables and fruits that are ripe during those months. Each season has a section of small plates (the savory dishes) and a dessert section.


I looked over at a pile of bananas on my counter while reading, when I had reached Spring Sweet Treats. They were at the “Use me up” stop and well, the guys rarely say no to banana bread. Or muffins for that matter.


Gluten-free Banana Carrot Pecan Muffins (banana, carrot & quinoa bread, page 215)


  • 1½ cups ripe bananas, mashed (3 to 5, depending on size)
  • 3 whole large eggs
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup olive oil
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • ½ cup quinoa flour
  • ½ cup brown rice flour
  • ½ cup almond meal (see below)
  • 3 Tbsp tapioca starch
  • ½ tsp fine sea salt
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ cup finely chopped pecans
  • ¾ cup finely grated carrots


Preheat oven to 350°, line 18 muffin cups with premium liners (such as Wilton ColorCups or Reynolds StayBrite).

In a medium mixing bowl whisk the bananas through vanilla.

Add the quinoa flour through cinnamon to a large mixing bowl.

Add the wet to the dry, stir until mixed. Fold in pecans and carrots.

Divided between the papers (they will be full), bake for 15 to 21 minutes, until golden on top and a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then transfer to the rack. Store covered once cooled.

Makes 18 muffins.


Why do I always recommend the fancy liners? They don’t stick to the baked goods! Ever line a muffin pan with cheap paper liners, bake low-fat muffins and half the muffin sticks to the paper? Not fun. So pay a bit more and never be frustrated again. No matter how special-needs your recipe is. Gluten-free recipes sometimes need a little love, so the liners are great – and hey, no cleanup after for your pans 😉

OK, almond meal. You can use the dried leftovers from making almond milk or just grind almonds in your food processor. Do what is easiest!

The recipe can be prepared as a loaf, in a loaf pan. Spread in a greased loaf pan, bake for 45 to 55 minutes, or until done. Let cool fully before slicing.


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