created at: 2011-12-29When Alyson Popper of Medfield, mom of Isaac and Brandon, wants to make a homemade snack for her kids, she chooses banana muffins as a healthier alternative to cookies. The oil in her recipe keeps the batter moist and the nutmeg adds just the perfect amount of spice. To keep her boys happy and satisfy their sweets cravings, she also adds mini chocolate chips to the batter. The recipe is simple enough that kids can help, plus it makes a great gift for neighbors and friends during winter visits!

2 eggs
1 cup sugar
½ cup applesauce
1 cup vegetable oil
2 medium ripe bananas, mashed
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon cinnamon
⅛ teaspoon nutmeg
¼ cup mini chocolate chips, optional

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin tins with paper liners. In a large bowl, use a mixer to beat eggs, sugar, applesauce, oil, bananas and vanilla. Stir in flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add cinnamon and nutmeg (and chocolate chips, if using). Pour batter into muffin tins and bake for 30 minutes, until tops spring back when gently pressed. Cool for five minutes before transferring to a wire rack.