Hello October! It’s nice to feel your gentle, chilly breeze again.
Along with the change of seasons comes my incessant desire to eat anything & everything sweet potato related: sweet potato pie, sweet potato soup, roasted sweet potato, mashed sweet potato – Autumn’s got me wantin’ it all.
One of sweet potato’s most unique application is to be used in baked goods, as it’s a phenomenal moisturizer and binder in the world of alternative baking, which is important considering that these muffins are grain-free, sugar-free, vegan, lectin-free, and paleo, which makes it difficult to find ingredients that still lend a kind texture.
After being continually disappointed by the results of gluten-free, sugar-free, vegan baking experiments, I have a recipe that I can be proud of, because these muffins have:
- A flavor that’s akin to muffins baked with normal glucose or fructose sweeteners, such as agave, maple syrup, honey, or sugar
- No strange aftertaste – a common complaint with many stevia sweetened products
- A moist & fluffy texture that’s neither gummy or crumbly
To achieve proper flavor and texture, we used a blend of sweeteners: stevia & erythritol. The stevia is solely there for added sweetness whereas the erythritol adds moisture, fluffy texture, and sweetness.
Coincidentally, erythritol isn’t a sugar or an alcohol.
Rather, chemically, it’s a “resistant starch,” meaning a starch that’s fermented in the colon, where it’s converted into short-chain fatty acids by gut bacteria. Unlike sucrose or glucose, erythritol doesn’t require insulin to be digested, thus it doesn’t spike insulin levels or raise blood pressure. Because sugar alcohols act as food for good gut bacteria, they’re able to multiply their population, creating a thicker wall of intestinal mucous, which keeps lectins out of the bloodstream and helps repair leaky gut.
Another thing the processing of sugar alcohols does is create flatulence… as in gas. For this reason, some people experience abdominal discomfort after eating too much alcohol sugars.
But don’t get all sad faced emoji on us yet; thankfully, there’s more than one type of alcohol sugar, including: xylitol, erythritol, sorbitol, isomalt, mannitol, and more.
The body processes all of these differently, with a certain percentage being passed through the kidneys as urine (undigested) and another percentage is processed as resistant starch and turned into gas in the colon (digested). The more sugar alcohol that goes undigested, the less gas you will experience. The more sugar alcohol that’s digested, the more gas you will experience.
Erythritol has the highest amount that goes undigested at 90%, which is drastically different than xylitol, where only 20% is undigested.
In layman’s terms: 80% of xylitol has to be digested, which can equate to a lot of gas! Only 10% of erythritol has to be digested, which doesn’t normally cause any discomfort.
Don’t get me wrong, both are completely safe, but quantity is an important measure to consider when consuming sugar alcohols. For baking – where large quantities are used – erythritol is my alcohol sugar of choice. For coffee sweeteners and other sweetening tasks where only a minute amount is needed, xylitol is a fine option.
For extraordinary color and a big ‘ole dose of antioxidants, I used purple sweet potato in this recipe, but the more widely-available garnet or jewel varieties will work just as well!
These muffins are made via the muffin method, which includes three steps:
- Mix together dry ingredients.
- Mix together wet ingredients.
- Mix dry ingredients into wet ingredients.
The muffin method is also used to assemble pancakes, waffles, and quick-breads (such as banana bread and pumpkin bread). For this reason, cupcakes and muffins are more fundamentally different than the fact that one has frosting and one does not; cupcakes are assembled via the creaming method, accomplished by beating together a solid fat (butter) and sugar until light and fluffy, then adding in the wet and dry ingredients into the fat mixture in alternating batches until everything is smooth.
We hope you enjoy these simply, fluffy, moist, and sweet Sesame Muffins!
If you like what your taste buds are tellin’ ya, leave behind a nice rating, share your thoughts with us in the comments, or show us your creations by tagging @noeggsorham on Instagram.
Ryan & Kim
Fluffy Sesame Muffins
Moist & fluffy muffins laden with the flavor of sweet & nutty sesame.
- 1 purple sweet potato, peeled & cubed into 1-in pieces
- 1/4 c full-fat coconut milk
- 1/4 c water
- 48 g (1/4 c) erythritol
- 28 g (2 tbsp) tahini, raw or toasted*
- 28 g (2 tbsp) unrefined sesame oil
- 1/2 tsp liquid stevia extract
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
- Pre-heat oven to 325 F.
- Bring a medium pot of water to boil over high heat. Drop in peeled, cubed sweet potato and boil until fork tender; 10-15 minutes. Remove from heat and drain water.
- To measure sweet potato, combine coconut milk and water in a 1 cup measuring vessel. Add in sweet potato until liquid reaches the 1 cup mark. Transfer to a large mixing bowl.
- Add remaining wet ingredients to mixing bowl and mash until sweet potato is smooth and ingredients are thoroughly combined.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together dry ingredients.
- Using a spoon – a whisk will clog up – stir dry ingredients into wet ingredients until thoroughly combined.
- Divide among 6 muffin tins – filling each 4/5 of the way full – and top with a light sprinkle of sesame seeds.
- Bake in pre-heated oven for 32-36 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
- Cool in muffin tins for 5 minutes, then remove to a plate or cooling rack for at least 10 more minutes.
- Enjoy while warm, or finish cooling and store in an airtight container for up to two days.
*If using salted tahini, reduce the amount of salt to 1/8 tsp