Glistening like sticky buns, these unusual muffins are packed with wholesome ingredients--vegetables, fruit and whole grains--so you can feel good about serving them to your family. If you prefer to make simple carrot muffins for lunchboxes or breakfasts-on-the-go, omit the topping; sprinkle 2 tablespoons chopped nuts over the muffins before baking, if desired.
1.2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
2.2 tablespoons chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)
3.1 10-ounce can pineapple slices
1.3/4 cup whole-wheat flour
2.3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3.2 teaspoons baking powder
4.1/2 teaspoon baking soda
5.1/4 teaspoon salt
6.1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
7.2 large eggs
8.1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
9.1/4 cup canola oil
10.2 tablespoons pineapple juice or orange juice
11.1 teaspoon vanilla extract
12.1 8-ounce can crushed pineapple (not drained)
13.1 cup grated carrot (1 large)
14.1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
15.3/4 cup raisins, preferably baking raisins (see Ingredient note)
16.1/4 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)
Preheat oven to 400°F. Coat 12 muffin cups with cooking spray.
To prepare topping: Sprinkle 1/2 teaspoon brown sugar into each muffin cup. Sprinkle nuts, if using, over the sugar. Stack pineapple slices and cut into 6 wedges. Place 2 wedges in each muffin cup.
To prepare muffins: Whisk whole-wheat flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a large bowl.
Whisk eggs and brown sugar in a medium bowl until smooth. Whisk in oil, juice and vanilla. Stir in crushed pineapple. Make a well in the dry ingredients; add the wet ingredients and stir with a rubber spatula until just combined. Stir in carrot, oats, raisins and nuts, if using. Scoop the batter into the prepared muffin cups (they'll be quite full).
Bake the muffins until the tops are golden brown and firm to the touch, 15 to 25 minutes. Immediately loosen edges and turn muffins out onto a baking sheet. Restore any stray pineapple pieces and nuts. Let cool for at least 10 minutes. Serve upside-down, either warm or at room temperature.
Baking raisins, moister than regular ones, ensure a better texture. To substitute regular raisins, plump them first: soak in boiling water for 10 minutes; drain well.
Recipe by 5 Minutes for Mom at http://www.5minutesformom.com/66201/get-a-coupon-for-del-montes-gold-extra-sweet-pineapple-plus-a-recipe/