{MM} lemon poppy seed muffins {vegan + gluten-free} + discovering the best vegan products

lemon poppy seed muffins -- vegan, gluten-free, agave sweetened, whole grain // bring joy I have a delicious vegan + gluten free lemon poppy seed muffin recipe,
(looking for just the recipe? scroll down to the bottom of the post)

but first, a quick weekend recap.

This weekend a few fun things happened:

1) Tyndale learned how to suck his thumb. We are thrilled. The ability for a child to self soothe is awesome.



2) I read Tell Your Time, by Amy Andrews (of Blogging with Amy). It’s short & sweet (only 30 pages–I read it & did the worksheets that comes with it in about an hours time).

tell your time

I’m in a huge transition period in my life right now. It’s kinda sink or swim. I cannot do everything I want to do as a wife, mother, friend, blogger/writer/businessperson without getting serious about my time management. I’ve been keeping track of my schedule & to-do’s by writing on scraps of paper & relying on the ol’ noggin to remember things. That sort of approach is just not going to cut it anymore.

I’m not into a lot of fluff or complex time management systems, so Amy’s straightforward, simple approach, & no-nonsense style really resonates with me. It’s based on prioritizing, being realistic, focusing on the type of person you want to become (rather than all of the things you think you need to do).

I highly recommend her book, especially if you’re like me & just need some direction with simple time management principles.

And the best part? The ebook is only $2.99. ⇒You can get it here


3) We went out to eat as a family & the Olive Garden & did our big monthly Costco trip–& I discovered some happy vegan gluten-free things. 

I didn’t think I would be able to get anything at Olive Garden except for salad (& the dressing, FYI, isn’t vegan, but I eat it anyway). My kids love getting the salad, pasta, & broccoli. I was pleasantly surprised to find that they have now added gluten-free rotini. This is good news for those of us who are gluten-intolerant, but not really for Celiacs since I’m sure that though the pasta is gluten-free, since it’s prepared in a gluten-heavy kitchen, there’s a high likelihood of cross-contamination.

I got the gluten-free rotini with the veggie pasta red sauce–both vegan & gluten-free. It was not an inventive dish, but it was filling & delicious, & fun to be able to eat pasta at Olive Garden again.

At Costco, as always, I noticed they had a few new vegan/gluten-free items.

Last week on facebook I asked you all what your little (big) expenses are that add up, & end up costing you a lot each month. One reader, Emma, mentioned coffee. While I don’t drink coffee, I do drink naturally sweetened carbonated beverages, which I’ve got to be honest, is sort of my financial achilles heel. I don’t drink coffee, or alcohol, can this be my one vice?

I’ve mentioned before how much I like flavored sparkling water & Zevia (in this post), & so when I saw that Costco added another fizzy drink to their selection, I couldn’t resist.

Honest Fizz is from the makers of Honest Tea, & is hands down the best stevia sweetened fizzy beverage I’ve tried. The flavor is clean, crisp, & fresh, & I like the tall, sleek 12 oz. cans. All of their ingredients, while not organic (they said they’re working on it), are non-GMO.

My fave: the orange fizz. Reminds me of orange CRUSH, from my childhood, except without all the sugar.


I noticed that Costco is now carrying almond flour (yipee!). It’s still about $6/pound, but probably the least expensive price I’ve found for almond flour. I don’t use almond flour much (for obvious budgetary reasons), but when I do use it, I think it can help create a delicious, r madras-chickpeas ich texture that really adds to gluten-free baked goods (like in my chocolate chip cookies). Between carrying their gluten-free all-purpose flour mix, coconut oil, plus all their bulk grains like quinoa, brown & white rice, I think your gluten-free baking free needs are nearly covered at Costco.

I also noticed they added a vegan entree-Madras Chickpea Curry. I figure I could add some rice & maybe a side of steamed broccoli & this could be quick dinner on a night when I don’t feel like doing much in the kitchen.

I’d like to tell myself I make everything from scratch, but the truth is, I like to have a few frozen meals in the freezer for those nights when their is just no time & we’re not in the mood for green smoothies or oatmeal.

Even though this entree costs a bit more than I’d like to spend on an average dinner ($10 for 6 servings, which would feed our family), I love supporting vegan companies & products, & hope that in doing so, we’ll see more vegan offerings like this.

After all, there is power in supporting vegan companies with your wallet. 

Speaking of which,

4) I received my first Vegan Cuts Snack Box.

I’m a Vegan Cuts ambassador & affiliate, which means they send me goodies & I get to try them out & tell you how I like them.

I cannot tell you how happy it made me to open up this little box of goodness to find so many delicious & interesting food selections–& all of them vegan & gluten-free! 

If you love to discover new vegan products, you’ll love the Vegan Cuts Snack Box. This monthly subscription box will introduce you to 7-10 new vegan products each month for just $19.95 (including shipping to the U.S.).


I love, love discovering new vegan products, but of course, we’re on a get-out-of-debt budget & I don’t want to waste time searching for stellar vegan products, or money buying a bunch of products I don’t actually like.

Vegan Cuts does all the work for you & carefully curates each month’s selection so that you can discover the best vegan products out there.

For only $20 a month, you can get a handful of products to try out, & get exposed to some awesome companies.

If you’re on a super tight budget, is Vegan Cuts worth it? Probably not.

But if you can manage a little wiggle room, Vegan Cuts is absolutely worth it–for only $20, you get some fab products, free shipping, & you’ll save on time because they’ve done all the searching & curating for you. You can trust their taste & their selection (kind of like Costco in that way).

(Plus, my kid’s think it’s so fun to get a box of vegan goodies–I love to show them that there are so many fun/tasty vegan options.)

Here’s what I got in this month’s box: 


What’s inside the box ↓↓

Since I just got the box on Saturday, I’ve only had a chance to try the NII bar (available in the Vegan Cuts Marketplace) so far.

It’s an organic, gluten-free, soy-free vegan snack bar. I found it satisfying (& loved that it was a bit higher in protein than some other comparable brands–8 grams), & actually like it better than other similar bars (like the Lara bar).

I’m excited to try the other products–especially the Numi tea (I really like their rooibos tea), which is made from a blend of carrot, curry, cilantro, onion, ginger, turmeric, & decaf green tea.


I have never heard of a tea using carrot, cilantro, onions. Can’t wait to try.

I’m also excited to get my hands (finally!) on a re-usable non-plastic straw. It’s about time I join the ranks of glass-straw users (& cut my plastic consumption while I’m at it).

I’ll let you know how I like the other products as I get around to trying each one.
Vegan Cuts



Vegan Gluten-free Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins

Now for this week’s {MM} recipe. 

Can I tell you I love muffins?

(also see my buckwheat oat muffins & amaranth banana muffins)

It’s important to have a slew of good muffin recipes up your sleeve, especially when you have kids. They are portable little mini-meals or snacks & these bad boys are agave sweetened as well as refined-flour free.

I decided to try using all unrefined flours this time, at the suggestion of Rachel, a bring joy reader. To my surprise, it turned out quite well. I typically like using a 60-40 ratio (60% whole grain, to 40% refined), because I find it delivers a baked good or bread that is light, not too dense, while still having some whole grain goodness to it, but this combo of flours turned out to work quite nicely together.

lemon poppy seed muffins -- vegan + gluten-free

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Yield: 24 muffins

Serving Size: 1 muffin

Calories per serving: 203 calories

Fat grams per serving: 10 g

lemon poppy seed muffins -- vegan + gluten-free

a vegan, gluten-free, refined-sugar-free, soy-free lemon poppy seed muffin made with whole grain flours


  • 1 1/3 c. buckwheat flour*
  • 1 c. brown rice flour
  • 1 c. cornmeal | or toasted quinoa flour
  • 1/3 c. ground flax seed
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 3/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 1/2 TBS. poppy seed
  • 1 c. solid coconut oil (not melted)
  • 1/2 TBS. pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 TBS. almond extract
  • 1 1/4 c. agave
  • 1 c. almond milk
  • 1/3 c. lemon juice (bottled is fine)
  • 1 tsp. lemon zest (totally optional)
  • *For a wheat version: instead of gluten-free flours, you can use 2 c.unbleached white flour + 3/4 c. whole wheat flour, or an additional cup of unbleached white flour


  1. First, a few notes. I like the combo of flours here--I think the cornmeal works well with the lemon & poppyseeds. I don't recommend replacing the buckwheat or rice flours, but if you want to replace the cornmeal with another flour, I'd recommend toasted quinoa flour. If you want to make a wheat version, you can use 3 cup unbleached white flour, or 2 cups unbleached white flour + 3/4 cup whole wheat flour. I make my flours from whole grains using my Blendtec, which helps keeps down the cost of baking gluten-free (here for more tips for baking on a budget).
  2. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  3. Get your muffin tins ready. (I love this muffin tin--it's non-stick & doesn't a great job of baking goods evenly.) You don't have to have cupcake paper liners, but I like to use them.
  4. Sift flours, baking soda, baking powder & salt. Add flax seed & poppy seeds & using a wire whisk, stir.
  5. Using a pastry cutter (or fork), cut in solid coconut oil, until flour is crumb-like & all coconut oil is incorporated.
  6. In a separate bowl, mix milk, agave, extracts, & lemon juice.
  7. Add liquid to flour mixture & stir until incorporated. It will be a bit lumpy--no worries--it will all smooth out in the baking process.
  8. Using a large cookie scoop (like this one, scoop batter into muffin tins (about 2/3-3/4 full).
  9. Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until it can pass the toothpick test.
  10. Remove the muffins from the oven & let cool in the tin on a cookie rack for 10 minutes.
  11. Remove muffins from tin. They are delicious hot right out of the oven, but they are a bit crumbly when eaten immediately after removing from the oven. As they cool they'll become less fragile.
  12. Wrap individual muffins in plastic wrap & store in fridge for 3-5 days. Freeze any leftovers after that, good for up to 3 months (if stored in airtight freezer bags).

27 g carbs, 2 g protein, 14 g sugar, 2 g fiber, 106 mg sodium; 6 WWP points

No {MM} links to share this week, but if you’re curious about what I’ve been pinning, follow me on pinterest, where I pin all my fave finds (not just food!).

Happy Monday.


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  1. Gabby @ the veggie nook
    on May 11, 2014 at 2:52 pm said:

    Love the look of these muffins!

    I wonder if Costcos in Canada have any of those products, I’m intrigued!

  2. Emma
    on May 6, 2014 at 2:26 pm said:

    I’m supposed to be getting a Vegan Cuts box in the mail but shipping is taking forever so I’m hoping there hasn’t been a problem…I want everything in the box you’ve shown! I’m especially intrigued by the veggie teas!
    About the fizzy drinks, have you tried making your own? I like to do sparkling water with lemon juice and stevia for lemonade or use the flavoured stevias (I like cherry).
    I’ve never made lemon poppyseed muffins but these look great.

    • Janae Wise
      on May 6, 2014 at 2:32 pm said:

      I love Vegan Cuts! I’m totally sold. I just used the glass straw for the first time this morning. I have to be honest, it’s a little weird using a *glass* straw, but if I can reduce my plastic consumption in one way, I’m all for it. Hope your box arrives safe & sound, & soon!

      And yes, the veggie teas–totally inventive! I seriously have never seen tea like it before. And I’m a tea (herbal infusion) lover.

      I have made my own fizzy drinks before, but I have to be honest, I love popping a cold can open. I think it’s fizzier & tastes better than if I pour it into a glass & add lemon juice & stevia. I know it’s cheaper this way, but what can I say, it’s one of my few guilty pleasures 🙂