I figured I would stick with the apple theme for one more day and actually create something with the applesauce I made yesterday. (Find Recipe Here)
A reader had commented yesterday about how they like to add cinnamon to their applesauce, and it really got me craving the combination of apples and cinnamon last night.
This Bran Applesauce Muffin Recipe is something I have created in my head. It is a mish mash of many other recipes and I have taken what I like from some, and left some things out that I dislike. It really seems to work well with the fresh applesauce and keeps the muffins nice and moist.
What is Oat Bran?
Oat bran is made from the outer shell of the whole oat. It is packed full of good for your body nutrients such as dietary fibre, iron, B vitamins, magnesium, selenium and many more. Bran is mostly well knows for that “keeps you regular” effect and that is from the amount of fibre that it contains.
It’s true that bran does keep you regular, if added to your diet each day. However, not drinking enough fluids along with a high fibre diet can have the opposite effect to the body.
Oat bran also has the ability to lower cholesterol and helps to maintain a healthy heart. The beta-glucan in oat bran is excellent at keeping your cholesterol levels down, while the fibre helps to excrete it from the body. It can also help prevent full absorption of LDL (bad) cholesterol in to the body from those not so healthy foods that you eat. Lowering your cholesterol greatly lowers your chance of heart disease.
Another huge benefit of adding oat bran to your diet is that it can help regulate your blood sugar. It slows the digestion of carbs therefore slowing down the amount of sugar that is entering the bloodstream after a meal. If eaten everyday oat bran can increase sensitivity to the bodies insulin production which helps clear sugar from the blood.
Oat bran can help with weight loss if added to your diet correctly. It gives the eater a sense of fullness after ingestion, and this is because it absorbs water as food passes through the gut and also slows down digestion so that you feel full longer. This in turn will help you consume less calories, eliminate snacking, and perhaps lose weight.
Oat bran is great for cooking with, and does exceptionally well in muffins!
It can also be served as a hot breakfast, or mixed in to your morning oatmeal.
Other types of bran
As far as types of bran goes, there is also
- Wheat bran
- Rice bran
Wheat bran is one of the three layers of the wheat kernel. It is the hard outer layer that was once tossed away and thought to not contain much nutritional value. Like oat bran its main component is the amount of fibre it contains. Wheat bran is also a source of prebiotics that act as food to promote a healthy gut.
Some studies show that Wheat bran can be used in preventing cancers of the colon, and reducing tumor production in some types of colon cancers. It is also rich in antioxidants.
Wheat bran does contain gluten, which may pose a problem for some people who ingest it. Fructans are also present in wheat bran which can essentially make you gassy.
This type of bran is commonly used in baking and can be used to replace half of the flour in most recipes. It is also great added to smoothies, and on top of cereals or yogurt in the mornings. It is best to start out slow with your intake to try to eliminate that gassy bloat.
Unlike wheat bran, rice bran is gluten free, lactose free, and hypoallergenic. It comes in a grain form as well as an oil. Rice bran is said to be helpful for a number of conditions such as high blood pressure, obesity, preventing kidney stones and preventing certain types of cancers. Rice bran can also be used as a topical paste and put on allergic skin reactions such as hives, or eczema.
Rice bran oil has a very high smoking point so it is a great choice for frying certain foods, though it contains no proteins.
Rice bran is most widely knows for is fibre content, and is suggested in most elimination diets due to the fact that most people can tolerate it.
Bran Applesauce Muffin Recipe
1 1/2 cups oat bran
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup fresh made applesauce (left chunky)
3 tbsp oil
Preheat oven to 400F
Line or grease edges of 12 capacity muffin tray
Mix together oat bran, flour, brown sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt, stirring until well combined
Make well in centre and add eggs, oil and applesauce
Stir until just combined – batter will be lumpy because of applesauce
Fill muffin cups almost to the top
Bake for 14-16 minutes
This recipe is also great if you add your favourite chopped nut or dried fruit such as raisins or cranberries.
If you are using paper liners, I find it is best to let muffins cool a bit before trying to remove the paper. It sometimes takes a bit of the muffin with it if they aren’t properly cooled.
If you are looking for other kid friendly recipes: Check out this super easy salt dough recipe!