I've recently been trying to get a bit healthier after a couple of high cholesterol-heart episodes with both parents. My genealogy just isn't helping on either side. I've always considered myself pretty knowledgeable about food and what's good for you and what isn't. Knowing these things doesn't mean I eat, or don't eat, accordingly.

I thought I'd do a test and do something I've never done before....count calories. What a nightmare! I found a calorie-counter online and was completely surprised with the amount of calories I was eating. If this is what 1500 calories looks like and it's only lunch-time, I'm in big trouble. I must have been consuming over 3,000+ calories a day.

So, why am I telling you all this? Anyone who knows me, knows I'm a very angry hungry person (did I just admit that?), so this calorie-counting process had to be about developing, testing, and uncovering recipes that actually tasted delicious. I don't like the taste of paper, so I'm not going to eat anything that resembles it just because it's low-cal or low-fat. And if you can't tell by now from this blog, I'm a sucker for a good muffin. I like muffins, because they are the right size, filling, and easy to manage on-the-go.

This recipe for Tropical Muffins is a twist on a zucchini-pineapple quick bread I found online. After many substitutions and additions, I was stunned that these weren't bad for me. The recipe made so much batter that I had enough for 12 muffins and a loaf!

Tropical Muffins
Yield: 2 loaves or 24 muffins

3 cups whole wheat flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
3 eggs
2 egg whites
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 cups mashed ripe, almost brown, banana
1/2 cup canola oil
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 (20 oz.) can crushed pineapple, drained
1/3 cup shredded coconut flakes (sweetened or unsweetened)
1/4 cup slivered almonds

Preheat the oven to 325. Mix together the eggs, egg whites, sugar, banana, oil, vanilla, pineapple, and coconut. Stir in the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt until combined. Pour evenly into greased/sprayed pans. Bake for 1 hour for loaves or 15-20 minutes for muffins.
Calories (per muffin/slice):187; Fat: 6g

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