Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Muffins

I have an everlasting love affair with peanut butter. I could eat it on and in everything! I love it so much I eat it by the spoonful out of the jar at pretty much any time of the day…it’s a problem friends! So any chance I get to incorporate peanut butter into anything I make is a good day! These chocolate peanut butter protein muffins are both delicious and handy. Rich chocolate, salty peanut butter and a dense cake-y texture make these muffins something special! The best part is that these muffins are only roughly 145 calories each! 

I started experimenting with a protein muffin after I found I was blowing my diet on a so called “healthy” frozen muffin that was actually sugar and fat laden. I started by making a banana based muffin, but found that while they were tasty right out of the oven, the muffins molded quickly and had a weird moisture issue the longer they sat (anybody else have this problem too?). 

So I started working with a base of whole wheat flour, protein powder and Greek yogurt. The muffins tasted good, but were still slightly dry. Then the other day I fell into something unexpected. I had a leftover half can of pumpkin puree in the fridge, so I added that into my muffin base as a random experiment and BAM! It added the moisture that this muffin was missing yet you can’t taste the pumpkin. 

Enjoy these muffins as an after workout protein/carb refuel or as a fast morning breakfast! They also freeze well for up to 3 months. Simply thaw in the fridge overnight or place a frozen muffin in a microwave and blast it for about 45 seconds.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Muffins
Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup canned pumpkin puree 
  • 1/4 cup coconut palm sugar or light brown sugar (can also use one packet of Stevia to reduce calories)
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2/3 cup nonfat Greek yogurt ( not flavored)
  • 2 tablespoons  coconut oil, melted
  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter, melted plus 2 tablespoons
  • 1 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 scoop chocolate or vanilla protein powder 
  • 1/2 cup  unsweetened cocoa powder ( I like the Hershey’s special dark cocoa powder)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ cup  mini chocolate chips 

Procedure
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a 12-count muffin pan with nonstick spray or oil.

In a large bowl, combine pumpkin, sugar, maple syrup, eggs, Greek yogurt, oil, ½ cup peanut butter and vanilla extract. Whisk until smooth.

In another bowl mix together flours, cocoa powder, salt, baking soda, baking powder, protein powder and cinnamon together into a large bowl. Slowly stir in the wet ingredients. Don’t over mix or you will have a chewy muffin! Fold in the mini chocolate chips. 

Fill muffin pan with batter, fill muffin cups up to the top. Using the melted 2 tablespoons of peanut butter, spoon a little on top of each muffin. Using a toothpick, swirl the peanut butter into the top of the muffin.

Bake for 18 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool 5 minutes, then remove and cool completely on a wire rack. Muffins stay fresh in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days.