Brown rice syrup is the healthiest natural sweetener, containing complex sugars along with the simpler kind. It tastes great in baked goods, but it’s milder in sweetness than pure maple syrup, our nation’s natural sweetener, so you may want to blend them if you’re looking for a sweeter taste.

Makes 6 Muffins

1 cup whole wheat pastry flour OR ½ cup each whole wheat pastry flour and unbleached white pastry flour
1 teaspoon aluminum-free baking powder
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon walnut oil (Spectrum brand works for baking temperatures)
1/4 cup brown rice syrup (Lundberg) or pure maple syrup OR 2 tablespoons of each
6 tablespoons soymilk (Eden Original preferred)
Zest of ¼ of an orange or a lemon and 1½ teaspoons orange or lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup blueberries
1 teaspoon maple sugar or dehydrated sugar cane juice to sprinkle on top

1. Preheat oven to 350°. Line muffin tin(s) with large 2.5-inch paper cups.

2. Mix dry ingredients in a bowl. In another bowl, whisk together wet ingredients, then stir in berries. Add wet ingredients to dry and stir to form a smooth, thick batter.

3. Transfer batter to paper-lined pan(s). Sprinkle tops with maple sugar or dehydrated sugar cane juice.

4. Bake until golden brown, 30 to 35 minutes. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes, then transfer muffins to wire rack to cool completely.

Variations:
Very Berry Muffins: Include an assortment of berries such as raspberries, blackberries and blueberries.
Gluten-Free Blueberry Muffins: Substitute Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free All-Purpose Baking Flour for whole wheat pastry flour.