Healthier peanut butter and choc chip pumpkin muffins

In case you haven’t noticed from the recap in my last post, there have been a lot of sweets consumed over the past two weeks. None of them came into my life unwillingly (like those office sweets that just jump out of nowhere at unsuspecting dieters). I made every one except for the cake and pies consumed on Thanksgiving. And the day after. What, not everyone eats leftover cake for breakfast the day after Thanksgiving? So yeah, I made them on purpose. But then I ate them, waaaaay too many of them. What can I say, the second sugar hits my lips, it’s like crack. I can’t stop.

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So when people ask me how my lifting program is going, I can’t really tell them much because while I’m following the lifting portion of the program, and yes – eating more protein, all those sweets kind of undo the hard work. [I’ve seen no body changes so far and gained another 0.6lbs in the last 2 weeks. And no, it is NOT muscle mass.]

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I polish them off so that “they’ll be gone and I can be better tomorrow” which is silly, really. But not in that moment… at that moment it seems oh so logical. So I decided something. When baking, I’m going to stick to healthier treats from now on. So that there is no guilt and no urge to binge just one more time before I try to be better. And hey, healthier doesn’t mean less tasty anyway. So really, it’s a win-win. Open-mouthed smile We’re going back to the basics here. I got a little too lax about treats in the name of “intuitive eating” but clearly intuitive (sweets) eater I am not.

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Btw, how do you like my pumpkin muffin pan? Isn’t it the cutest? I’ve been meaning to use it for about 12 months now. Ever since I got it on sale at Crate & Barrel last year after their fall collection was switched to Christmas-themed. And what do you know, I’m using it smack in the middle of Christmas season. Oh well, better late than never.

I’ve been craving pumpkin muffins like it was my job, so last night my pumpkin dream became a reality. It was rainy, dark and our kitchen was clean (thanks to Adam, our dish cleaning master). Oh and right about the same time, I stumbled upon a printout of Lauren’s pumpkin muffins with spiced cream cheese filling recipe. These were based on Ellie Krieger’s pumpkin muffin recipe, which I ADORE, so I knew there was a very good chance I’d love these too.

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I followed Lauren’s recipe for the muffin dough + added 1/4 cup chocolate chips and 1/4 cup peanut butter chips (which coincidently Lauren sent me as a sweet present. Last time we saw each other, I was telling her how I could no longer find the natural kind. Thanks again, Lauren!!!). I also used 2T of sugar for the cream cheese filling (instead of 1), which I sandwiched between muffin halves after they were baked (there was enough filling for 6).

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The result was fantastic. These are so moist!! They have just enough sweetness to make them feel like a treat, but I know with the whole grains and pumpkin I’m still taking care of my body. I will admit, I had one for breakfast today (with a plain Oikos) but devoured this model after his after-dinner photo-shoot tonight as well. He was as good as he looks Smile with tongue out

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Do you think pumpkin recipe season is over? I think I’m usually late to these parties Winking smile

What are traditional “Christmassy” foods… except for cookies? I want to be season-appropriate. :D

PS – For a savory recipe from me, check out my post on Moldavian grilled pork chops with garlic sauce.

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